Cell Medica Collaborates with Cell Therapy Catapult to Help Bring Its New Treatment to NHS

First UK SME to have novel cell therapy ready for supply to the NHS

The Cell Therapy Catapult and Cell Medica, leading players in the emerging UK cell therapy industry, are pleased to announce a collaboration to accelerate NHS adoption of Cell Medica’s Cytovir™ CMV. Cell Medica is a leading UK cellular immunotherapy company while the Cell Therapy Catapult is focused on the development of the UK cell therapy industry to increase the nation’s health and wealth.

Cytovir™ CMV is an individualised immune cell therapy that involves the infusion of immune cells from a donor into an immunosuppressed patient, in order to reconstitute their immunity to Cytomegalovirus (CMV). CMV is a member of the herpes virus family that is carried by up to 65% of the UK population as a latent virus. In people with a healthy immune system, the virus remains in the body without causing any infectious symptoms. In a patient whose immune system has been profoundly suppressed following a bone marrow transplant, CMV will often reactivate and can cause significant morbidity and mortality. Anti-viral drugs are currently the only available treatment option, however these are associated with complications and side effects, which limit overall effectiveness.

Keith Thompson, CEO of the Cell Therapy Catapult said: “We’re looking forward to helping Cell Medica with the preparations for seeking reimbursement in the UK for Cytovir™ CMV. This will be one of the first cellular immunotherapies to be considered for use within the NHS and as such, we believe it has real potential to help establish a framework to evaluate the healthcare benefits of novel cell therapies.”

Cytovir™ CMV is comprised of naturally occurring CMV-specific memory or effector T cells which can be purified from the blood of the original bone marrow donor and transferred to the patient to provide immunity to the virus.

Gregg Sando, CEO of Cell Medica said: “Having undertaken important clinical studies in the UK to demonstrate the benefit of Cytovir™ CMV, we are looking forward to collaborating with Cell Therapy Catapult to present the case for reimbursement within the NHS system. Advanced immune reconstitution techniques offer an alternative to antiviral drug therapies with harmful side effects. Reimbursement is required to make these cell therapies available to NHS patients.

Cytovir™ CMV is currently available to treat patients in the UK and Germany.