ABU DHABI - The Abu Dhabi Stem Cell Centre (ADSCC) has treated more than 2,000 patients suffering from COVID-19, with 1200 already fully recovered from the effects of the virus, according to state news media agency WAM.
ADSCC announced that it had succeeded in ramping up the number of treatments from the 73 in the initial clinical trial.
The large increase was due to a major effort by staff at the centre to treat as many people as possible following the UAE government’s decision to make it available free of charge to all moderate-to-high risk COVID-19 patients in the Gulf state.
The Government’s decision came after the treatment, which is branded UAECell19, showed efficacy and an impressive safety profile reflected in the absence of significant changes in adverse events reported, an absence of any unexpected serious reactions (such as anaphylaxis, allergic reactions or sudden death) and an absence of any lung complications as determined by radiological exams from inhalation of the nebulized product.
A team of doctors and researchers at ADSCC, led by Dr Yendry Ventura, announced in May they had developed a new treatment for COVID-19 patients.
UAECell19, an autologous stem cells based therapy, appears to help the body fight the virus and makes the disease less harmful.
Following an initial trial, researchers were able to conclude that UAECell19 reduced the duration of hospitalization from 22 days to just six, when compared to patients who had received standard treatment.
Further analyses revealed that patients treated with the stem cells were 3.1 times more likely to recover in less than seven days than those treated with standard therapy, and 67% of the patients who received the stem cells treatment owed this recovery to the new treatment.
ADSCC has since secured intellectual property rights protection for UAECell19, which opens the way for the treatment to be shared widely so more patients can benefit.
ADSCC said researchers were at various stages of several investigatory efforts to establish effectiveness (Phase 3 trial), optimal efficacy of dosage, and efficacy to treat other respiratory diseases such asthma, COPD, and cystic fibrosis.