In tonight’s health watch, as the corona virus spreads there is a huge rush to find effective treatments. Vaccines are a long way off an antiviral so far have been ineffective but Dr. Max Gomez here now to tell us about a local company that may have a treatment using cells, this could be big.
Dr. Max Gomez: “80% people who get the coronavirus recover all on their own or don’t even realize they’re infected, what’s the difference between those people and those who get deathly ill aside from underlying illness, it’s probably cells in their immune system and there’s a drug to fix that.”
It looks a little like a scene from a sci-fi movie row upon row of liquid nitrogen tanks chilled at 330 degrees below zero Fharenheit, what’s not fiction though is what’s frozen in the tanks, millions of human cells that may just be the treatment for corona virus illness call COVID19 that everybody have been searching for.
In an interview with Dr. Robert Hariri (CEO, Celularity): “Not everybody who’s exposed to COVID19 get sick, that suggests that there’s something fundamental about them that makes those who get sick and those who don’t get sick different and we know that’s their immune system.”
Dr. Robert Hariri (CEO, Celularity) is a renowned cell biologist and founder of cellularity, a cell therapy company that has developed a source of immune cells called Natural Killer Cells and these labs in New Jersey’s cellularity has isolated purified and vastly multiplied huge numbers of natural killer cells derived from human placentas.
Dr. Robert Hariri (CEO, Celularity): “Natural killer cells are designed by nature in order to protect us from things like viral infections, residents in the placenta at the end of birth are these remarkable cells that retain the ability to provide defense against viral infected cells and even cancer.”
Cellularity has already been testing its natural killer cells against cancer in human trials where they’ve proven to be safe and well tolerated. The company has just filed and IND and investigational new drug application ith the FDA to test this with COVID 19.
Dr. Robert Hariri (CEO, Celularity): “We think that in an early trial of some 50 to 100 patients we’d be able to determine how effective this is and what we have to do to maximize effect.”
Dr. Max Gomez: “Now that FDA is obligated to respond to an IND within 30 days but there’s a good chance that this IND will be granted an accelerated review so it’s possible that these NK or natural killer cells could be tested in the sickest COVID19 patients very soon. It’s worked, it’s safe and there’s a good chance that these things worked very well against virally infected viruses and virally infected cells so they got to test it first, little the absolute it looks like this, it’s a safe treatment that’s why we’re going to move ahead quickly. “