Golden Meditech Holdings Limited (SEHK stock code: 00801), a Hong Kong-based integrated healthcare enterprise, and The University of Texas at MD Anderson Cancer Center (www.mdanderson.org) have created Cellenkos, Inc., a start-up enterprise focused on umbilical cord blood derived T-regulatory cellular therapies arising from the laboratory investigations of Simrit Parmar, MD, Associate Professor at MD Anderson Cancer Center
Dr Simrit Parmar is Tenured Associate Professor in the department of Stem Cell Transplantation and Cellular Therapy as well as Experimental Therapeutics at MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, Texas. Dr Parmar is the principal investigator of research laboratory focused on cord blood derived regulatory T cells including their isolation and ex-vivo expansion for generating clinically relevant dose for their application in autoimmune diseases and inflammatory disorders. She has published her work in peer reviewed journals and her research has been translated into a pilot study of 3rd party cord blood regulatory T cells for prevention of graft versus host disease, where she serves as the principal investigator. Her research has been funded by peer reviewed grants. She was also the proud recipient of the inaugural R. Lee Clark Fellowship award. In addition, she is actively involved with the global academic program as well as MD Anderson Cancer Network program. Dr Parmar is one of the founding members of the Asia Pacific Hematology Consortium that focuses on advancing the field of hematology oncology through continued education, collaboration and fostering innovations. She chairs the radiation injury treatment network (RITN) committee at MD Anderson Cancer Center. Dr Parmar received her hematology / oncology fellowship training at Northwestern University and bone marrow transplant fellowship at MD Anderson Cancer Center.
Chief Technology Officer
Dr. Elizabeth J Read was appointed as Chief Technology Officer and Chemistry, Manufacturing, and Controls (CMC) Advisor overseeing product development, manufacturing and regulatory affairs. Dr. Read brings with her over 30 years experience in the field of cellular therapy including IND/BLA development, CMC/manufacturing & assay development as well as quality and regulatory affairs. Prior to joining Cellenkos, Inc., Dr. Read’s previous positions include Chief Technology Officer at Adicet Bio, Senior Vice President of Product Development at Medeor Therapeutics, and Head of Product Development at Fate Therapeutics. She also served as Section Chief and Medical Director for the core cell therapy facility at the National Institutes of Health Clinical Center, and Medical Director at the American Red Cross Blood & Tissue Services Southern California Region.
Chairman and Chief Financial Officer
Mr Kim Chuan Leong, also known as Jackie, has been the Chief Financial Officer at FunTalk China Holdings Limited (Formerly Pypo China Holdings Ltd.) since July 2009, and also serves as its Principal Accounting Officer. Mr Leong served as a Vice President and the Chief Financial Officer of FunTalk PRC since August 2008. Mr Leong serves as Chief Financial Officer of Middle Kingdom Alliance Corp. Mr Leong served as a Director and Acting Chief Financial Controller of China Healthcare Inc., the largest Chinese medicine retail chain in the United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland, from August 2007 to July 2008, and Vice President of the Business Development Division at Golden Meditech Holdings Limited, a Hong Kong Stock Exchange listed company, or Golden Meditech, from December 2006 to July 2007. He was a Senior Manager of the Audit Department at KPMG Hong Kong, from April 2004 to November 2006 and a Manager of the Assurance Department of KPMG Singapore, from April 2001 to March 2003. Mr Leong obtained a diploma in financial accounting from Tunku Abdul Rahman College in Malaysia, and is a fellowship member of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants.
Vice President, Clinical Operations
Tara Sadeghi was appointed Senior Director of Clinical Operations in December 2017, where she provides oversight and strategic development for clinical operations. Ms. Sadeghi brings with her over 25 years experience in clinical research and drug development, regulatory and quality management, and executive leadership. Prior to joining Cellenkos, Inc., Ms. Sadeghi served as Director of Clinical Operations at Bio-Path Holdings, Inc., Assistant Director of Cord Blood Bank Regulatory and Quality Assurance at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, and GMP Administrator at Baylor College of Medicine, Center for Cell and Gene Therapy (CAGT).
The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston ranks as one of the world's most respected centers focused on cancer patient care, research, education and prevention. It is one of only 41 comprehensive cancer centers designated by the National Cancer Institute (NCI). For the past 25 years, MD Anderson has ranked as one of the nation's top two cancer centers in U.S. News & World Report's annual "Best Hospitals" survey. It receives a cancer center support grant from the NCI of the National Institutes of Health (P30 CA016672).
MD Anderson Cancer Center and Cellenkos collaboration will support the T-REG Program, led by Dr Simrit Parmar.
ASD: AUTISM SPECTRUM DISORDER
AD: ALZHEIMER’S DISEASE
MS: MULTIPLE SCLEROSIS
IBD: INFLAMMATORY BOWEL DISEASE
GVDH: GRAFT VS HOST DISEASE
AA: APLASTIC ANEMIA
SLE: SYSTEMIC LUPUS ERYTHEMATOSIS
RA: RHEUMATOID ARTHRITIS
T1D: TYPE 1 DIABETES
Golden Meditech and the strategic investor collectively own 51% of the voting stock of the new company following the exercise of the warrants. The investment includes options to expand the T-reg technologies of Cellenkos into key Asian markets. At present, Golden Meditech's cord blood storage facilities have surpassed half a million subscriber base in the first half of 2016. This large pool of data is essential for the research treatments that may help thousands of families since stem cells have the potential to treat a wide range of diseases.
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