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An Israeli company is using placental cells and 3D technology to develop cell therapies to treat coronavirus symptoms.

By United with Israel Staff

The Israeli company Pluristem Therapeutics Inc.is developing a treatment for COVID-19 (coronavirus), it announced Thursday. Pluristem is using stem cell therapies that do not require genetic or tissue matching to heal patients fighting the potentially deadly illness.

Pluristem is using its patented placenta-derived cell treatment called PLacental eXpanded (PLX), which it hopes can be used to treat the respiratory and inflammatory complications associated with COVID-19.

It appears that PLX cells grown using the company’s three-dimensional expansion technology “may prevent or reverse the dangerous over-activation of the immune system,” reducing the symptoms of the virus, according to a company statement.

“PLX cells may potentially reduce … COVID-19-induced pneumonia and pneumonitis,” the company explained.

“Previous pre-clinical findings of PLX cells revealed significant therapeutic effects in animal studies of pulmonary hypertension, lung fibrosis, acute kidney injury and gastrointestinal injury which are potential complications of the severe COVID-19 infection,” the company added.

The company’s clinical trials on hundreds of patients showed the treatment is safe and may mitigate tissue-damage caused by COVID-19.

“The fact that PLX is available off-the-shelf, combined with our ability to manufacture large scale quantities, is a key advantage in case a large number of patients may need respiratory support,” stated Yaky Yanay, Pluristem President and CEO. “The primary target is to prevent the deterioration of patients towards Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome (ARDS) and sepsis. We intend to start the joint collaboration immediately, with an aim to bringing much needed treatment to a rapidly expanding global health threat.”

Pluristem uses placental cells and three-dimensional (3D) technology to develop cell therapies for conditions such as inflammation, ischemia (inadequate blood supply to organs, especially the heart muscles), muscle injuries, hematological disorders and exposure to radiation.