Diabetes is the fastest growing chronic disease in the world and is recognized by the United Nations as a global health threat, affecting over 415 million people worldwide. With a dramatic increase in the incidence of diabetes in the U.S., the domestic health care market is particularly disposed to new solutions.
The American Diabetes Association estimates that one in five health care dollars in the U.S. is spent on diabetes-related care. The high cost of blood sugar control and insulin regimens present a drain on the country’s health care resources.
Causes and Treatments
The emerging global epidemic of diabetes can be traced to rapid increases in obesity and poor diet. Sadly, this increasing prevalence of diabetes presents a very large market opportunity for qualified and enterprising biotechnology companies like
Altucell. According to the Centers for Disease Control, in addition to those already diagnosed (in the US, 29 million and another 86 million with pre- diabetes), another 57 million are at risk due to hereditary, health and lifestyle factors.
Today, the principal approach to diabetes is to manage, not cure. Besides insulin products, there are nearly two-dozen approved drugs on the market for management of blood sugar levels. However, nearly all of these compounds have identified cardiovascular and renal side effects and some are contra-indicated for certain at-risk patient groups.
Perhaps more important than the staggering size of the patient population, is the paucity of effective methods to diagnose and treat diabetes. In addition, no drugs or therapies are on the market today that has demonstrated effectiveness in restoring health to insulin-producing tissues.
· Diabetes represents a large and rapidly growing global market with huge unmet medical needs
· Diabetes is a chronic disease that both reduces life expectancy and reduces quality of life among the afflicted
· People suffering from this disease are dependent on medications and diet restrictions, and live a sub-par life
· There is an immense and untapped opportunity in T1D, an autoimmune disease with a more aggressive and predictable disease progression, which can be extended to other autoimmune diseases
Altucell is focused on combining its patented Altustem stem cells with its patented, proprietary delivery system Altucap, a microencapsulation process designed to protect cells from the autoimmune system. In T1D, our strategy protects Altustem from the patient’s immune system and allows these stem cells to function as they do in non-diabetic individuals.
This approach holds promise to address chronic conditions, such as T1D, where, pancreatic beta cells are destroyed by the immune system, leading to hyperglycemia (high blood sugar) and long-term complications. In T1D there are defective t-cells; the stem cells transplanted into the body repairs these diseased, malfunctioning t-cells, restoring the body’s ability to produce insulin. The process is one of remodulating and regenerating normal functionality.