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Hemocellular Therapeutics establishes licensing agreement with UNC, ECU

CHAPEL HILL -- Hemocellular Therapeutics, expected to produce the first platelet-based therapeutic available to doctors for the immediate treatment of active bleeding, has established an exclusive licensing agreement with the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and East Carolina University, company officials recently announced.

The agreement recognizes key technology developed by researchers at the two universities as central to the N.C. company's planned creation of lyophilized, or "freeze-dried," human platelets the component of blood primarily responsible for initiation of coagulation. As a part of the exclusive license agreement, both universities received equity in Hemocellular and will share in royalties on the eventual sale of products.

Hemocellular's freeze-dried platelets are the result of a decade of research supported by initial federal research funding of $10 million.

The company's scientific founders, Dr. Arthur P. Bode of ECU and Dr. Thomas H. Fischer of UNC, have led the research efforts. Bode, who received his doctorate in experimental pathology from UNC, has served as ECU's scientific director of clinical coagulation programs for 15 years.

Fischer is scientific director of UNC's Francis Owen Research Laboratory, where researchers discovered the molecular cell membrane cross-linking technology crucial to Hemocellular's product development, said Richard A. Basile, chief executive officer of the company, and the initial extensive series of trials have taken place at that lab.

"The Francis Owen lab has a worldwide reputation in the field of coagulation therapeutics. We are extremely fortunate to have researchers affiliated with this lab informing our efforts to bring this technology to health-care settings as rapidly and responsibly as possible," he said.

Basile added that the licensing agreement is key in advancing platelet development to the next stage: human clinical trials. No other func
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Contact: Deb Saine
919-962-8415
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
15-May-2003


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