Liquid Biopsies Used in Personalized Medicine Represent Disruptive Innovation

Time magazine considers liquid biopsies one of the top five investment opportunities of 2015. Investors considering new developments in healthcare like ideas that have the potential to change existing treatment protocols or dramatically impact an entire industry segment. These investors look for “disruptive innovation” or “impact investing” and many are actively engaged in helping bring the new personalized medicine break-through technology to market.

The liquid biopsy is one example of a relatively new idea that has the potential to change the life sciences industry and further scientific discovery. 

In this blog, let's explore the potential benefits of liquid biopsies as a minimally invasive methodology. We'll also consider the challenges associated with the technology and explore how it may impact treatment protocols and strategies.

Topic: Biobanking and Biorepository, Topic: Labora..........

Researchers Learn How to Turn Cancer Cells into Macrophages

Sometimes we set out in search of one thing, and end up finding something entirely different. This was the case for a group of Stanford scientists who were looking for ways to prevent cancer cells from dying during experiments, but then discovered that it is possible to force leukemia cells to mature into macrophages.

Published in the March 2015 Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, this discovery came as a chance observation in a Stanford University of Medicine laboratory.

Topic: Laboratory Processing, Topic: Cell Therapy ..........

Japan's Gambit for Cell Therapy Clinical Trials

When Shinzo Abe was re-elected as Japan's Prime Minister he aggressively embarked on a challenge to revive Japan's "sluggish" economy. With the introduction of Abenomics, an economic policy that includes "three arrows" of fiscal stimulus, monetary easing, and structural reforms, the ball was set in motion to redefine Japan's standings within the global market. Over the past several years, Japan has developed a foothold in the cell therapy clinical trial space and gained global attention based on their regulation reform. In this blog, we'll address how these new regulations are impacting cell therapy clinical trials conducted by the biopharma industry on a global scale.

Topic: Clinical Trial Sample Management, Topic: Ce..........

ISCT 2015: Driving Clinical Advances in Cell Therapy

We are pleased to announce our participation at next week's International Society for Cellular Therapy (ISCT) 21st Annual Meeting in Las Vegas, NV. This year's theme, Coming of Age - Driving Clinical Advances in Cell Therapy, will focus on driving the translation of scientific and clinical research to deliver innovative cellular therapies to patients. With over 1500 international delegates registered to attend, ISCT 2015 is a great opportunity to network with experts within the global cell therapy arena. We are honored to showcase our cell therapy logistics services and cold storage products in conjunction with our parent company, Thermo Fisher Scientific.  

Topic: Cell Therapy Solutions, Content: Blog

The Atlantic Vaccines & Immunotherapeutics Summit 2015


Did you know that the US vaccine market is projected to reach $17B by 2018 or that the cancer immunotherapy market will increase to nearly $9 billion across the world's major pharmaceutical markets in 2022? It is projections such as these that are the driving forces behind the inaugural Atlantic Vaccines and Immunotherapeutics Summit. The conference, hosted by Tech Council of Maryland (TCM), begins this Thursday, May 7th in Bethesda, MD. Attendees will have the opportunity to learn from and engage with the industry's foremost researchers and business leaders, while discussing the pressing issues that face the new generation of vaccines.

Topic: Cell Therapy Solutions, Content: Blog

Cell Therapy Logistics: Beyond the Basics

My previous eBook, Commercially Successful Cell Therapies: Navigating the Ultra Cold Chain Distribution Minefield, and several of my blogs, have discussed the basics of building a successful logistics strategy for the management of cell-based material. If you read these, then you are aware of the better-known and important factors to consider, such as:

  • Selecting the right dry shipper
  • Qualifying that shipper to the particular payload and shipping configuration
  • Choosing an appropriate data logger
  • Creating a chain of custody
  • Evaluating a transit carrier
  • Anticipating potential problems inherent in shipping at cryogenic temperatures

This eBook goes beyond the basics and acquaints you with some of the lesser known considerations. Although they may be hidden in the background, these factors can play a major role in the success or failure of a clinical trial and the long term efficacy of a cell-based commercial product. They are:

  • Standardization
  • Package and shipping qualification
  • Equipment validation
  • Process qualification
  • Documenting the chain of custody

I am focusing this eBook on the unique logistical challenges of autologous cell-based therapies, that is, therapies that use a patient’s own cells for the manufacture of a treatment that is then administered only to that patient. The other type of cell-based therapy is referred to as“allogeneic” and is derived from an unrelated donor or donors, and administered to the relevant population of patients. All of the considerations I mentioned above apply to allogeneic as well as autologous therapies.

Content: eBook, Topic: Cell Therapy Solutions

Viral Cell Therapies Fighting Cancer

Emily Whitehead was diagnosed with acute lymophoblastic leukemia (ALL) in 2010. After two years of unsuccessful intensive chemotherapy, she was running out of treatment options and time. When the outlook was at its bleakest, she found out that she qualified for CTL019, a highly experimental phase I clinical trial where virus-modified T cells are administered to fight against the cancer. Following her enrollment and receiving this treatment, Emily had severe symptoms and became critically ill with cytokine release syndrome, a type of systemic inflammatory response to treatment. After spending several weeks in the pediatric intensive care unit (PICU) at CHOP her doctors conducted a bone marrow test where the results showed no evidence of the disease whatsoever. Her successful reaction to this cutting edge treatment has led people to believe that viral cell therapies are not only a treatment, but a potential cure for leukemia cancer. Talk about a game changer.

HBO's VICE, an Emmy-winning documentary series, is a dynamic and ground breaking news program that discusses controversial topics and pushes the envelope. The season three premier was preceded by a special report called Killing Cancer which highlighted stories like Emily's and discussed how common viruses like small pox, measles, and even HIV are being used to battle and possibly cure cancer.

Topic: Cell Therapy Solutions, Content: Blog

Phacilitate Cell & Gene Therapy Forum 2015: Pre-conference Facility Tour

Fisher BioServices, a Thermo Fisher Scientific brand,  is proud to announce our full support of Phacilitate’s 11th Annual Cell & Gene Therapy Forum Washington Meeting to be held on January 26-28 at the Grand Hyatt in Washington, DC.  Over 150 biopharma industry leaders will be in attendance to share their expertise in cell & gene therapy, immunotherapy, and stem cells as discovery & research tools.

In addition to attending Phacilitate, Fisher BioServices will host an on-site tour of our facility in Rockville, MD on Sunday, January 25th.

Topic: Cell Therapy Solutions, Content: Blog

World Stem Cell Summit 2014

Fisher BioServices is proud to announce our attendance at this year's World Stem Cell Summit, to be held in San Antonio, Texas, from December 3rd through the 5th, concurrent with the RegMed Capital Conference (RMCC). The Summit is the single largest international meeting of stakeholders in stem cell therapies and regenerative medicine, with discussions regarding research, advocacy, regulatory law, and funding, as well as advances in disease-specific areas. More than 1,400 attendees are expected from around the world.

Topic: Biobanking and Biorepository, Topic: Cell T..........

"24 Hours of Stem Cells" Virtual Event for Cell Therapy Researchers


We at Fisher BioServices are proud to announce our participation in Life Technologies' upcoming virtual event, the 2nd annual 24 Hours of Stem Cells. From 6 pm EST on November 5th through 8 pm EST on November 6th (11 pm Nov. 5th to 1 am Nov. 7th GMT), you can connect with other researchers, visit virtual booths with digital resources, and hear discussions on various topics from speakers around the world! And as a virtual event, you can connect on your own terms, whenever and from wherever you want.

Topic: Cell Therapy Solutions, Content: Blog

Latest Ultra Cold Chain Global Challenges to be Discussed at Key Events

We at Fisher BioServices are excited to share our recent and upcoming participation at three industry conferences, with three opportunities to provide new case studies and insights. Dan O'Donnell, our Director of Cell Therapy Logistics, who is widely known for his expertise in ultra cold chain distribution and regulatory compliance in the transport of biologics and cell-based therapeutics, will speak at two of these events. Both occur in September, in Boston: Mr. O'Donnell recently spoke at the Stem Cell and Regenerative Medicine Conference on September 15th and 16th (speaking on the 15th), and for those who missed this event, Mr. O'Donnell will present again at the 12th Annual Cold Chain GDP & Temperature Management Logistics Global Forum from September 29th through October 3rd (speaking on the 30th). He will also be exhibiting at the Stem Cell Meeting on the Mesa in La Jolla, CA, on October 7th through 9th. Dan also recently published a video blog that you can find in this previous post

Topic: Cold-Chain Logistics, Topic: Cell Therapy S..........

Amazing Samples: Tumor Saving Lives

Cancer is one of the more feared afflictions plaguing modern man. Although the symptoms and anatomy of tumors have been known for thousands of years—the name was coined by Hippocrates, the father of western medicine, for the way the blood vessels resembled a crab’s legs—we are only now beginning to understand the molecular mechanisms behind the disease. Who could have imagined that a small mutation could so impair a single cell’s apoptotic machinery,  allowing it to proliferate as ever-growing tissue, and eventually spread and destroy the entire body?

Topic: Cell Therapy Solutions, Topic: Amazing Samp..........