Professor Itescu's research covers the off-the-shelf utility of allogeneic adult mesenchymal progenitor cells (MFCs). These cells have a low cost, can be easily culture-expanded under GMP conditions, have regulatory controls for release and potency criteria allowing for uniformity of product, are 1000 fold purer than other cell types and can be used to treat unrelated patients without the need for immunosuppression. The research has demonstrated proof-of-principle safety and efficacy of these cells in a variety of indications covering cardiovascular, eye disease, orthopedic and bone marrow transplantation. Itescu is focused on understanding the basic mechanism for how these cells exert their effects, and how to harness their potential and translate the findings to clinical practice.
Kim do E, Lee EJ, Martens TP, Kara R, Chaudhry HW, Itescu S, Costa KD. Engineered cardiac tissues for in vitro assessment of contractile function and repair mechanisms. Conf Proc IEEE Eng Med Biol Soc. 2006;1:849-52.
Martens TP, See F, Schuster MD, Sondermeijer HP, Hefti MM, Zannettino A, Gronthos S, Seki T, Itescu S. Mesenchymal lineage precursor cells induce vascular network formation in ischemic myocardium. Nat Clin Pract Cardiovasc Med. 2006 Mar;3 Suppl 1:S18-22.
Boyle AJ, Whitbourn R, Schlicht S, Krum H, Kocher A, Nandurkar H, Bergmann S, Daniell M, O'Day J, Skerrett D, Haylock D, Gilbert RE, Itescu S. Intra-coronary high-dose CD34+ stem cells in patients with chronic ischemic heart disease: a 12-month follow-up. Int J Cardiol. 2006 Apr 28;109(1):21-7. Epub 2005 Jun 20.