MYJ 1633 and NK Biocell: UKM inks MoA to advance cancer treatment

UNIVERSITI Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM) is working towards advancing cancer treatment under a new collaboration with NK Biocell Sdn Bhd.

The memorandum of agreement (MoA), signed at Hospital Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (HUKM) recently, has the potential to offer hope for cancer patients in Malaysia who are seeking treatment other than chemotherapy.

MYJ 1633

There were more than 48,000 new cancer cases in Malaysia last year as reported by the World Health Organization (WHO), and the number is expected to double by 2040. This will ultimately burden the country’s healthcare system, and have a direct impact on the emotional, physical and financial health of cancer patients.

In this regard, experts need the latest methods to provide appropriate treatment to cancer patients, and NK cells are poised to be one of such potential measures, NK Biocell said in a press release dated Oct 5.

NK cells are part of the human immune system that plays an important role in destroying tumour cells and virus-infected cells, and research has shown that these have the potential to be used for cancer immunotherapy treatment.

As a result, ImmunisBio Co Ltd. (Korea) has developed and patented a technology to activate and expand the cells in the laboratory.

The final product is known as MYJ1633. With the MoA, UKM is able to produce this product for the Malaysian market through NK Biocell.

UKM deputy vice chancellor for research and innovation affairs Prof Datuk Dr Wan Kamal Mujani said he hoped the collaboration would provide a significant impact on society and benefit the country.

Private-public partnerships, he added, are regarded as the new frontier for higher learning institutions as the latter now have to embark on more tangible, deliverable and lab-to-market innovative research studies to produce more clinical products and services.

“We hope that more medical products for the treatment of various diseases can be manufactured under the varsity’s Current Good Manufacturing Practice (cGMP) certified lab and the Centre for Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine (CTERM).”

NK Biocell chief executive officer Dr Park Ji-Youn said the MoA was a milestone in science, technology and medicine collaboration between the parties.

“In 2018, MYJ1633 was certified and approved by the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare of Japan.

“This benefits Malaysians, especially cancer and autoimmune patients,” he said, adding that MYJ1633 would be registered under the National Pharmaceutical Regulatory Agency (NPRA) with the help of CTERM.


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