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In 2002, my father, who was an oceanographer, and I were faced with an almost impossible decision. The chemotherapy we were using to treat his leukemia was no longer functional, and we were forced to choose an immunological approach, bone marrow stem cell transplantation (BMT), for which the survival rate was 50%. We struggled with this very difficult decision for so long that when we finally decided on BMT, he was no longer eligible. At the time in an effort to help in any way I could, I clearly remember humbly offering a well known transplant expert, Dr. Karen Ballen at Massachusetts General Hospital, a paper on copper supplementation for the treatment of AML. She politely thanked me and raised her hand indicating a negative response. After this encounter, and two years before his death, I enrolled in the Ph.D. program at the University of Miami. I obtained an 8 year, dual education in the departments of biochemistry and immunology, and I am still today trying to control disease using immunological molecular approaches. One of the directions that showed early promise for chronic graft-versus-host disease after BMT was the use of mesenchymal stromal cells to suppress rejection. In 2014, this experience and my study of immunological manipulation led me to a deep understanding of what the ‘paracrine effect’ of cell communication really means –– exosomes. Since then, our research and development related to mesenchymal stem cell exosomes has led our company to a point where we are preparing investigational new drug trials for FDA approval for multiple indications, and our company is one of the most well respected groups in exosome science.
I have dedicated myself and this company to the development of a body of knowledge supporting exosome scientific and clinical research. I invite you to connect with us to learn more about exosomes and their specific characterization, which utilizes advanced modalities such as super-resolution fluorescence microscopy, protein assays, as well as mRNA and miRNA sequencing results that help us define the evolving science that is cellular signalling.
Duncan Ross Ph.D.