Capricor Therapeutics, Inc. (NASDAQ: CAPR), a clinical-stage biotechnology company developing biological therapies for cardiac and other serious medical conditions, announced on October 20, 2016 that it has been awarded a grant of up to $4.2 million from the NIH to study CAP-2003 (cardiosphere-derived cell [CDC] exosomes) for hypoplastic left heart syndrome (HLHS). "Capricor's successful record of competing for non-dilutive sources of capital reflects our commitment to scientific excellence, as well as the importance of pursuing the therapeutic potential of our technologies. To date, we have been awarded over $30 million from government agencies to support the preclinical and clinical advancement of our cell and exosome candidates," said Linda Marbán (photo), Ph.D., President and Chief Executive Officer of Capricor. "HLHS is a tragic congenital defect of the heart that often results in heart failure and premature death despite several complex surgeries. With this grant award, together with a recently-awarded grant from the Department of Defense to fund the development of a commercial manufacturing process for CAP-2003, we now have two federally-funded applications that will enable us to broaden the scope of our exosome program. Exosomes offer a different approach to regenerative medicine as compared to cell-based strategies, and can be handled more like traditional pharmaceuticals. CAP-2003 is independent of its cells of origin, so we believe this product may offer opportunities for clinical use that may not be ideal targets for our cellular therapeutic product (CAP-1002, allogeneic CDCs). We are currently pursuing indications in which CAP-2003 can be locally delivered so as to have the best opportunity to act upon the injured cells.
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