Tag Archives: Embryonic Stem Cells

First Study Demonstrating Safety of Embryonic Stem Cell (ESC)-Derived Cells in Humans Reported by Advanced Cell Technology, Results Published in The Lancet

For the first time, a study by Advanced Cell Technology (“ACT”; OTCBB: ACTC)

Dr. Steven Schwartz, a retina specialist at the University of California, Los Angeles, conducted the trial with two patients. (Monica Almeida/The New York Times)

demonstrated the safety of the transplantation of human embryonic stem cells (hESC) derived from retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) into patients. Additionally, the injected cells survived and continued to persist during the study period.  Results were reported for two patients, the first in each of the Phase 1/2 clinical trials, and were published in The Lancet, representing an important milestone for the field of embryonic stem cell research.

A patient said her vision improved in a meaningful way after the treatment, which used embryonic stem cells. (Monica Almeida/The New York Times)

In the study, patients with Stargardt’s macular dystrophy (SMD) and dry age-related macular degeneration (dry AMD) were treated with ACT’s embryonic stem cell (ESC)-derived cells. Both patients were legally blind, and both had measurable improvements in their vision that persisted for more than four months. No treatments currently exist for either indication.

Through extensive media outreach coordinated by Russo Partners, coverage of this announcement was secured across all levels of print and broadcast media, including top tier, national, international, newswire, trade and regional outlets.

Below are links to samples of media coverage of the announcement:




New York Times

USA Today

BBC News



The Telegraph



Associated Press


Los Angeles Times

The Scientist


MedPage Today


Advanced Cell Technology, Leader in the Human Embryonic Stem Cell Space

Two weeks ago our client, Advanced Cell Technology (ACT), strengthened their position as a leader in the field of embryonic stem cell research when Geron, citing economic conditions, announced that it would shift its focus to developing the company’s later-stage oncology therapeutics and no longer pursue its human embryonic stem cell (hESC) programs. Geron and ACT were the first two companies to initiate clinical trials in the United States using hESCs.

ACT recently initiated the first-ever European clinical trial using stem cells, specifically using retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) derived from hESCs to treat Stargardt’s Macular Dystrophy (SMD).  Additionally, the company is currently conducting two Phase 1/2 clinical trials in the United States using hESC-derived RPE cells to treat SMD and dry age-related macular degeneration, respectively.

When Russo Partners received the news that Monday morning, we immediately sprang into action, knowing this was a key opportunity for ACT to control the company’s messages surrounding Geron’s announcement when the public would want to know what implications this industry shift would have on ACT’s clinical programs. We proactively reached out to the media, securing interviews with multiple top-tier outlets, as well as financial wires, scientific magazines and trade publications.

By speaking with the media, ACT was able to communicate core messages surrounding the announcement, including emphasizing the strengths of its ongoing hESC programs and the company’s future development plans. In addition, the company was able to provide insight into Geron’s decision as well as information about the stem cell space in general.

Below are links to sample coverage we secured for ACT following Geron’s news:

New York Times



The Scientist