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Biotechnology Focus – RepliCel receives Japanese patent covering its hair regeneration technology

January 22, 2014

Biotechnology Focus

RepliCel Life Sciences Inc.  has been granted a patent by Japan’s Ministry of International Trade and Industry for hair follicle mesenchymal stem cells and their use thereof. These cells are used in RepliCel’s RCH-01 treatment for androgenetic alopecia, also known as pattern hair loss. With the issuance of this patent, RepliCel now has patents issued in Japan, the U.S, Australia and the European Union protecting its technology with other jurisdictions still pending.

The patent approval is an important milestone as RepliCel’s licensing partner, Shiseido Company, prepares to conduct human clinical trials using RCH-01. Shiseido has an exclusive license to use RCH-01 in Japan, China, South Korea and Taiwan representing a population of approximately 2.1 billion people.

David Hall, CEO of RepliCel stated, “The allowance of our first patent in Japan is significant as it protects RepliCel’s licensing partner, Shiseido Company, as they move forward with their clinical trial program in Japan. In addition, recently adopted legislation in Japan governing regenerative medicine underlines the country’s commitment to accelerate R&D and clinical pathways which could be beneficial to our Japanese partner.”

According to the International Society of Hair Restoration (ISHR), the leading authority on hair loss treatment and restoration, almost one million patients sought treatment for hair loss in 2012. Of this number, 41 per cent of the patients were from Asia, representing the largest single region, surpassing the U.S. by 15 per cent.