City of Hope in Duarte, California, has announced a five-year, $8 million grant from the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine to establish a clinic that will work to identify cures for currently incurable diseases and provide patients with safe, fast, and potentially life-saving stem cell therapies.
The Alpha Clinic for Cell Therapy and Innovation (ACT-I), part of CIRM's Alpha Stem Cell Clinics program, will serve as a one-stop solution for clinical trials focused on stem cell treatments for incurable diseases. To date, only two trials have been identified, but additional trials — including the transplantation of modified blood stem cells into patients with AIDS and lymphoma and T cell immunotherapy trials developed by researchers in City of Hope's new Hematologic Malignancies and Stem Cell Transplantation Institute — are enrolling patients and will be integrated into the effort. City of Hope had previously been awarded more than $55 million by CIRM for laboratory and translational research, with a focus on HIV/AIDS and brain cancer.
"We are committed to finding cures and treatments to diseases that are, for now, incurable," said John Zaia, the Aaron D. and Edith Miller Chair in Gene Therapy, chair of the Department of Virology, and principal investigator for the stem cell clinic. "This grant recognizes City of Hope's commitment to and leadership in this endeavor, [and] enables us to pursue the crucially important work of bringing the promising potential of stem cell treatments to fruition."