May 23, 2021

Weekly reads: Orchard punts on life-saving SCID trial, cardioids with cavities, more

Weekly reads: Orchard punts on life-saving SCID trial, cardioids with cavities, more


Sometimes things in the stem cell world get complicated and this week is no exception with news of Orchard Therapeutics dropping a seemingly life-saving clinical trial. There are hundreds of kids who could possibly benefit.

Weekly reads: Orchard punts on life-saving SCID trial, cardioids with cavities, more
Stained sections of cardioids, which have a heart chamber-like structure. (B) Cardiac mesoderm explants from chick embryos in human cardiac mesoderm conditions form chamber-like CM structures with cavities. Scale bar, 200 mm. Hofbauer, et al. Cell 20201.

Rotten apple decision from Orchard Therapeutics

From David Jensen at California Stem Cell Report we have something of a scoop: ‘Wicked’ Problems, Orchard Therapeutics and Bubble Babies: A California Stem Cell Story.

Orchard Therapeutics cited “business reasons” for terminating its seemingly successful stem cell clinical trial for SCID.

It feels to me like a tragedy to see a biotech stop a trial that seems to have already saved lives and could save many more.

What about the tens of millions of dollars that CIRM invested here? Should Orchard have to pay that back? Jensen has a follow-up piece at Capitol Weekly with more information about CIRM’s perspectives on the decision by Orchard Therapeutics.

The more encouraging news is that CIRM seems very devoted to continuing this work clinically. The hope is that another biotech will pick up the trial and Orchard will facilitate that.

Here’s a newer update from David Jensen.

Heart self-organization from stem cells

Some more recommended papers: T cells and more



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