Unicyte AG, a subsidiary of Fresenius Medical Care, has initiated a long-term research collaboration with Prof. Dr.  Tobias B. Huber of Germany’s Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf (UKE) to explore the molecular and cellular mechanisms of kidney diseases.

Prof. Huber, Chair of the III. Department of Medicine at UKE, a major university hospital, is a leading expert on glomerular diseases. He will direct the research program, which aims to address various forms of kidney disease including diabetic nephropathy. The goals of the collaboration are to gain further insights into the process leading to the gradual decline in renal function and to identify genetic, signaling and soluble factors involved in the underlying mechanisms.

Unicyte, a leading regenerative medicine company with translational programs in the field of kidney disorders and other illnesses, is building on successful partnerships with other academic partners. These include a collaboration of 15 years’ standing with the University of Torino in Italy.

Dr. Olaf Schermeier, Fresenius Medical Care’s CEO for Global Research and Development, said: “As Unicyte’s organizational structure is designed to leverage the benefits of academia-industry partnerships, the collaboration with Prof. Huber offers a unique opportunity to help patients with kidney disorders by developing innovative treatment options based on a holistic understanding of renal dysfunction. I’m very excited about this collaboration with one of the leading hospitals in Europe, as it could lead to new treatment options that will complement current kidney care.”

Prof. Tobias B. Huber stated: “Because fundamental scientific questions concerning the pathomechanisms of kidney diseases remain to be answered, we will further explore the potential of new options for the treatment of kidney patients in pre-dialysis stages. The collaboration with Unicyte as industry partner will be fruitful in developing a therapy from pre-clinical research through to clinical practice. Our goal is to provide excellent new therapies, reduce the burden of disease, and significantly improve the lives of our patients.”