6:32 pm Monday, September 14, 2015
  • DSC01166 cropped

2015 San Diego JDRF Annual ONE Walk

Join Team ViaCyte in Turning Type 1 into Type None!

2015 Walk Info Flyer

Take two steps forward to cure diabetes

Step 1: Visit our team website and register as a Walker or a Virtual Walker

Step 2: Raise a minimum of $25.00 before September 25th and you will receive a Team ViaCyte walk t-shirt

View Team Viacyte images from past JDRF walks

12:28 pm Monday, September 14, 2015
  • Career Showcase - 1

Fueling Innovation: ViaCyte’s Medical Biotechnology Career Showcase 2015

Investing in the Future

Here at ViaCyte, we believe in the importance of teaching and supporting our future generations in their scientific endeavors in order to fuel innovation.  With that, we were happy to host our first Medical Biotechnology Career Showcase where we provided high school students from around the San Diego region the opportunity to explore careers in regenerative medicine with the insights, knowledge, and guidance from the professionals at ViaCyte.

Students learned what it means to pursue a career in science by participating in discussions and demonstrations from a number of members of the ViaCyte team including execs, scientists, and engineers.

Lab 1: Stem Cells & Cell Culture – fed a mock flask of cells, and observed and imaged cultured cells using a microscope

Lab 2: Design Engineering – reviewed the medical device design process, from initial CAD to finished device and observed 3D printer in action

Lab 3: Medical Device Manufacturing –operated laser cutting materials, part inspection, and assembly of a mock device by ultrasonic welding

Lab 4: Product Manufacturing – performed a mock device filling operation in a barrier isolator

Lab 5: Histology & Imaging –observed stages of histological specimen preparation and performed inspection of stained tissue slides

A big thank you to all of the students who participated in making our first career showcase a great success!

10:19 am Monday, August 10, 2015
  • Viacyte EN20 with quarter

MIT Technology Review: A Pancreas in a Capsule

The MIT Technology Review published a piece expressing optimism about our “cells in a sack” approach to treating type 1 diabetes.  ViaCyte is mentioned as only the third company in the United States to test an embryonic stem cell-based therapy in humans.

As the article describes, in October 2014 we began a Phase 1/2 clinical trial to test the safety and efficacy of our VC-01™ candidate product — a semi-permeable pouch containing pancreatic precursor cells that are designed to differentiate upon implant to produce blood sugar-regulating hormones.  In this way, the VC-01 product could essentially act as a replacement endocrine pancreas.

This piece also emphasizes the seriousness of type 1 diabetes and how difficult it is for children — patients are required to prick their fingers, inject themselves with insulin, and monitor what they eat every day in order to regulate their blood sugar.  Improperly managed blood sugar can lead to kidney damage and blindness.

Read more in MIT Technology Review

10:18 am Monday, August 10, 2015
  • Kevin A DAmour

The Pharmaceutical Journal: Making Beta Cells in the Lab

The Pharmaceutical Journal interviewed Kevin D’Amour, ViaCyte’s chief scientific officer, in an article that describes several current approaches to producing beta cells as a treatment for type 1 diabetes.

The piece describes our 2008 study in which we introduced pancreatic progenitor cells derived from embryonic stem cells in a mouse model.  The cells, implanted at three different sites, differentiated into functional human islet tissue and produced insulin in 92 percent of the mice.  In the years since, as the article explains, we went on to develop the Encaptra™ pouch to hold the pancreatic precursor cells, protecting them from autoimmune destruction.  We also developed methods for scale-up production of the cells, and now the VC-01TM product candidate (cells plus device) is in a Phase 1/2 clinical trial in humans.

D’Amour is quoted saying that he envisions that ViaCyte’s type 1 diabetes product will one day be available from hospitals — implanted by endocrinologists in a non-invasive procedure.

Read more in The Pharmaceutical Journal

10:18 am Monday, August 10, 2015
  • SD Reader cover_Gavin

San Diego Reader: Type 1 terror

An in-depth article in the San Diego Reader details the difficulties faced by families with a child who has type 1 diabetes — pricking fingers to test blood sugar levels every three hours, injecting insulin, monitoring glucose intake and worrying constantly.  Many of these families are strong advocates for type 1 diabetes research.  Looking ahead at potential therapies in development, the executive director of the San Diego chapter of JDRF likened our candidate encapsulation device, Encaptra™, which holds pancreatic precursor cells, to a “shark-proof cages used by underwater photographers.”

From within Encaptra, the precursor cells are expected to differentiate upon implantation, producing mature pancreatic cells that produce insulin and other blood sugar-regulating hormones. Encaptra is designed to allow the hormones to escape, and the body’s immune system can’t get in to destroy the cells.

Read more in the San Diego Reader