Guildford, UK, 18 April 2006: ReNeuron Group plc (LSE: RENE.L) today announces that it has signed an agreement with Chemicon International, Inc. (‘Chemicon’), a subsidiary of Serologicals Corporation (NASDAQ/NM: SERO), whereby Chemicon will exclusively manufacture and distribute two of ReNeuron’s patented ReNcellTM neural stem cell lines worldwide for research purposes.
Under the terms of this multi-year agreement, Chemicon will exclusively manufacture and supply ReNeuron’s ReNcell CX and ReNcell VM cell lines and media to the worldwide stem cell research community. Chemicon will leverage its strength and depth in stem cell research products to offer the ReNcell lines through its direct sales team in North America, Australia, the UK and much of Europe, as well as through its worldwide network of distributors. ReNeuron will receive upfront and royalty payments on cell line and media sales made by Chemicon.
The ReNcellTM lines are immortalized human neural stem cell lines specifically generated by ReNeuron for application as models for regenerative medicine. These cell lines are fully characterized, can proliferate indefinitely and can be induced to differentiate into the three major types of neural cells – neurons, astrocytes and oligodendrocytes – via defined media and protocols.
Michael Hunt, Chief Executive Officer of ReNeuron, said:
“We are delighted to be collaborating with Chemicon, a world-class reagent company with a clear and aggressive strategy to deliver high quality human stem cell products to the research market. This deal enables the immediate commercial exploitation of ReNeuron’s ReNcellTM neural stem cell products, in line with our strategy of generating near-term income streams from our technologies to contribute to the funding of our various longer term stem cell therapeutic programs.”
Jeffrey D. Linton, President of Chemicon, said:
“Chemicon is excited to collaborate with a leading company in the human stem cell field. The ReNcellTM lines represent a key product release for us and demonstrate our commitment to delivering innovative, high-value reagents to the stem cell market. Well characterized human stem cell products like these provide a valuable research tool and will help fuel discovery in this promising area of research.”
Notes to editors
About ReNeuron Group plc
ReNeuron is a leading, UK-based adult stem cell therapy business. The Company is applying its novel stem cell platform technologies in the development of ground-breaking stem cell therapies to serve significant and unmet or poorly-met clinical needs.
ReNeuron has used its c-mycERTAM technology to generate genetically stable neural stem cell lines. This technology platform has multi-national patent protection and is fully regulated by means of a chemically-induced safety switch. Cell growth can therefore be completely arrested prior to in vivo implantation.
The Company’s lead stem cell therapy, ReN001 for chronic stroke disability, is in late pre-clinical development. Subject to successful completion of pre-clinical testing, the Company plans to file for approval to commence initial clinical trials in stroke later this year, with trials commencing as soon as possible thereafter.
The Company has also generated pre-clinical efficacy data with its ReN005 stem cell therapy for Huntington’s disease, a rare, genetic and fatal neurodegenerative disorder which affects around 1 in 100,000 people. This programme is in pre-clinical development.
In addition to its stroke and Huntington’s disease programmes, ReNeuron is developing stem cell therapies for Parkinson’s disease, Type 1 diabetes and diseases of the retina.
ReNeuron has also leveraged its stem cell technologies into non-therapeutic areas – its ReNcellTM range of cell lines for use in drug discovery applications in the pharmaceutical industry.
ReNeuron’s shares are traded on the London AIM market under the symbol RENE.L, and its warrants are traded under the symbol RENW.L.
Further information on ReNeuron and its products can be found at www.reneuron.com.
About Serologicals Corporation
Headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia, Serologicals Corporation is a global provider of biological products, enabling technologies and custom services to life science companies and research organizations. The Company’s diverse customer base includes major life science companies and leading research institutions. Our customers use our products, technologies and services in all facets of their activities, including basic research, drug discovery, development and bio-manufacturing. Our products, technologies and services are essential tools for research in a range of key disciplines, including oncology, hematology, immunology, cardiology, neurology, proteomics, infectious diseases, cell signaling and stem cell research.
Through its Chemicon Division, the Company also manufactures diagnostic products at its cGMP, ISO, and TGA approved facilities. Chemicon International, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Serologicals Corporation, is headquartered in Temecula, California.
For further information:
Michael Hunt, Chief Executive Officer
John Sinden, Chief Scientific Officer
Tel: 44 (0)1483 302 560
Tel: 44 (0)20 7831 3113
The terms “ReNeuron” or “the Company” refer to ReNeuron Group plc and its subsidiary undertakings.