Eli Lilly and Company and Sigilon Therapeutics announced a global collaboration to develop encapsulated cell therapies for the potential treatment of type 1 diabetes.
Lilly is a global biopharmaceutical company and a worldwide leader in diabetes care, offering a wide range of therapies and a strong commitment to cutting-edge research.
Sigilon is a privately-held biopharmaceutical company that is focused on discovering and developing “living therapeutics” with its Afibromer™ technology product platform. Sigilon was founded and created by Flagship Pioneering, a life science innovation firm, which unveiled the company in 2017 with $23.5 million in capital.
Encapsulated cell therapy is an emerging area of biopharmaceutical research that aims to unleash the therapeutic potential of cells to treat serious diseases without the need for immunosuppression. This approach holds promise to address chronic conditions, such as type 1 diabetes. In type 1 diabetes, pancreatic beta cells are destroyed by the immune system, leading to hyperglycemia (high blood sugar) and long-term complications if glucose levels are not managed effectively.
In the Lilly-Sigilon collaboration, Sigilon will create proprietary products comprised of induced pluripotent stem cells, a type of stem cell derived from adult cells, engineered into differentiated insulin-producing pancreatic beta cells and encapsulated using Sigilon’s Afibromer technology. The goal of these products will be to restore insulin production over sustained periods, without triggering an immune reaction.