ISTO Technologies Awarded Spine Technology Award for NuQu(R) Technology

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| Source: ISTO

ST. LOUIS, Oct. 25, 2012 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- ISTO Technologies, Inc. announced today that it has received the 2012 Spine Technology Award for its NuQu® technology. This award, which is announced annually by Orthopedics This Week and RRY Publications, is to be presented this week at the North American Spine Society annual meeting in Dallas, Texas. The purpose of the award is to honor the best products, engineering teams, and inventors in spine surgery. ISTO received this award for its scientific innovation in the category of Biomaterials and Biologics.

NuQu is comprised of tissue expanded juvenile chondrocytes, and is under clinical investigation for the treatment of pain and disability associated with lumbar degenerative disc disease. Currently there is no available treatment for patients who fail traditional conservative management of discogenic back pain. NuQu may represent a break though treatment which promotes healing of the disc and allows a cost effective non-surgical solution to chronic disability.

ISTO announced on October 22nd 2012 that it is initiating a Phase II trial to further evaluate the efficacy and safety of its NuQu cell-based therapy for the treatment of pain and disability associated with degenerated spinal discs. The company expects to commence enrollment in the randomized, double-blinded, placebo-controlled trial in the fourth quarter of 2012.

NuQu is part of ISTO's proprietary cell-based orthobiologics platform, which harnesses the regenerative capacity of juvenile cartilage cells to create products designed to repair and restore function to damaged cartilage. In preclinical studies, in partnership with the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery at University of California, San Francisco, ISTO scientists studied the use of juvenile chondrocytes, compared to bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells for treatment of injured intervertebral discs. Results showed that juvenile chondrocytes were optimally suited for this application, showing superior regenerative capacity.

"Receipt of this award from a recognized industry-leading publication like Orthopedics This Week is an important acknowledgement for the company and our NuQu technology," said Mitchell Seyedin, Ph.D. President & CEO of ISTO. "We are very excited about the potential of this program as a key element of our cartilage regeneration technology. We believe that NuQu has the potential to improve patient outcomes applicable to the treatment of certain chronic spinal conditions," commented Dr. Seyedin.

In addition to NuQu, ISTO is developing DeNovo® ET, a scaffold-free engineered cartilage tissue, also produced though tissue expansion of juvenile chondrocytes. This product is intended for the repair of damaged articular cartilage in the knee, and is under Phase III clinical investigation.  

ISTO also manufacturers and markets InQu®, a bone graft extender and substitute. InQu is a differentiated product that combines integrated hyaluronic acid and a resorbable polymer for better handling and biology. The primary target market for InQu is spinal fusion applications.

About ISTO

ISTO is a privately-held orthobiologics company dedicated to improving patient quality of life through the development of proprietary products for spinal therapies and sport medicine applications. ISTO's products are intended for the repair and regeneration of damaged or injured cartilage and bone.  For additional information on ISTO, please visit our website at www.istotech.com.     ;

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