StemCyte, a global cell therapy company from the US has formed of a joint venture with Apollo Hospitals and Cadila Pharmaceuticals to develop stem cell therapies derived from umbilical cord blood to treat patients with certain malignant blood disorders.

StemCyte, a global cell therapy company from the US has formed of a joint venture with Apollo Hospitals and Cadila Pharmaceuticals. The joint-venture company, called StemCyte India Therapeutics, will be based in Ahmedabad in Gujarat and utilizes the strengths and regional expertise of Apollo Hospitals and Cadila Pharmaceuticals. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

The StemCyte India Therapeutics will provide stem cell therapies derived from umbilical cord blood to treat patients with certain malignant blood disorders, including leukemia, lymphoma and myeloma; inherited disorders such as sickle cell anemia and thalassemia; and immune deficiency diseases. In addition, StemCyte India Therapeutics will participate in clinical studies to develop cell therapies for indications for which there are unmet clinical needs.

"The joint venture enables us to combine StemCyte's proven cell therapy products with Apollo and Cadila's expertise in the Indian healthcare market for the benefit of one of the largest patient populations in the world. Furthermore, StemCyte India Therapeutics is an important part of our global expansion strategy. We have one of the largest and most ethnically diverse supplies of umbilical cord blood stem cells. By continuing to build our inventory, we can bring our products to more patients worldwide," said Mr Kenneth J. Giacin, chairman and chief executive officer of StemCyte.

Dr. Prathap C. Reddy, Executive Chairman of Apollo Hospitals said, "Apollo believes in building bridges to improve the Indian health care system. Apollo has always invested in therapies and technologies that provide safe, effective and ethical cures to our patients. The formation of StemCyte India Therapeutics is another hallmark on our journey to excellence."

Mr Indravadan A Modi, chairman of Cadila Pharmaceuticals, said, "Our goal is to bring the best to India in the realm of life sciences. Research in stem cells and related areas will have a far-reaching impact on patient care in the future, and StemCyte's results have been very encouraging. We join forces with Apollo Hospitals and StemCyte to redefine the future of life-saving health care in India."