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Organicell Regenerative Medicine, Inc. OCEL is a pioneer in the Extracellular Vesicle (EV) space. They have already been developing exosome-based drug candidates for the treatment and prevention of COVID-19, Long COVID, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), osteoarthritis, and other conditions. Its flagship product, Zofin™, is in human clinical trials. Since being FDA approved for an expanded access trial, the company has also treated 18 people with the exosome-based therapy and the results are promising with patients showing reduced inflammation and improved lung function.
New Information Linking Exosomes and the Common Cold
However, a possible new reason for companies like Organicell to get excited about EVs has recently been uncovered by researchers at Harvard University.
“In what researchers are calling a scientific breakthrough, scientists behind a new study may have found the biological reason we get more respiratory illnesses in winter. It turns out the cold air itself damages the immune response occurring in the nose.”
It seems that EVs have an absolutely crucial role in preventing germs from effectively entering and getting a foothold in the body through the nose. The body creates and uses EVs to mop up and get rid of harmful agents, but this becomes seemingly far more difficult when the temperature outside gets extra low.
“In fact, that little bit of coldness in the tip of the nose was enough to take nearly 42% of the extracellular vesicles out of the fight…”
One of the researchers, Dr. Benjamin Bleier, “expects to see the development of topical nasal medications that build upon this scientific revelation. These new pharmaceuticals will ‘essentially fool the nose into thinking it has just seen a virus,’ he said.”
The Emerging Research On Exosomes Is Filled With Promise, But Still New
While often confused with stem cells, exosomes are not cells. They are the smallest of all Extracellular Vesicles (EVs) – the various particles cells secrete to send messages and materials to each other. EVs are how cells tell each other to reproduce, differentiate into specific cells, repair, and so on. It’s also how cells pass along proteins, lipids, DNA, RNA, and other materials that the receiving cell might need to carry out those functions.
EVs may have the potential to reduce inflammation, repair damaged tissue, and otherwise help cells regenerate and heal.
Their ability to carry cargo to a cell has also attracted interest from biopharmaceutical developers who are looking into using EVs as a delivery mechanism for therapeutics. If these developers can engineer EVs that carry a specific drug to specific cells – like delivering chemotherapeutic agents to tumor cells – they could create more targeted treatments with fewer adverse reactions. Biotech companies are working on creating the technology necessary to reliably engineer exosomes to create potent and highly targeted treatments.
This field of study is still emerging and there is a lot that researchers still don’t yet know about EVs. A lot of the most promising data to come out about these messenger particles is from animal and cell culture studies. So a major hurdle the research still needs to overcome is whether those exciting findings will translate to human studies.
Organicell is among the companies to have already begun human trials for an exosome therapy. ZofinTM, its lead drug candidate, is being developed as a potential treatment for COVID, Long COVID, COPD, and osteoarthritis.
Does all this mean even bigger opportunities for treatments and products for companies like Organicell?
Learn more about Organicell’s research and products here.
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