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Millenium Biologix Inc. launches bone research experiments aboard NASA Shuttle Columbia Mission - STS-107.

Kingston, Ontario, Canada -- Kingston, Ontario, Canada, January 15 /PRNewswire/ -- Millenium Biologix Inc., a Canadian Medical Biotechnology company specialising in Skeletal Repair and Tissue Engineering, is pleased to announce that a second series of bone cell research experiments from Canada and Europe will be flown on two of Millenium's Osteoporosis Experiments in Orbit (OSTEO(TM)) payloads aboard the NASA Shuttle Columbia mission, STS-107, scheduled for launch on January 16, 2003.

OSTEO(TM) Mini-Lab

Osteoporosis-like bone loss is a serious problem for astronauts during space flight. To find a solution to this condition, Millenium Biologix, in partnership with the Canadian Space Agency (CSA), developed the OSTEO(TM) Mini- Lab System to conduct bone cell research in Microgravity. In addition to providing valuable research opportunities in microgravity using the company's Skelite(TM) technology, OSTEO(TM) forms the foundation for the company's advanced clinical tissue engineering systems. Millenium plans to make these innovative products available to hospitals and clinics around the world, enabling them to carry out autologous tissue engineering for their own patients.

The OSTEO(TM) mini-lab system is designed as a fully contained multi- functional biological culturing system. This NASA Shuttle Middeck Locker payload consists of four independent trays that operate at a controlled temperature of 37.0 degrees C +/- 0.3 degrees C. Each tray provides closed culture containment consisting of a pre-sterilised/ready-to-use disposable fluid pathway and three independent, disposable bioreactors. This setup allows fluid delivery from any of the four syringe reservoirs to any of the three bioreactors, offering maximum science flexibility.

The first successful mission was John Glenn's flight STS-95 in October 1998.

The Osteoporosis Experiments in Orbit 2 (OSTEO(TM) 2) mission is aimed at better understanding bone loss during spaceflight, which has implications for osteoporosis research on Earth. As part of the NASA Shuttle Columbia Mission STS-107, three Canadian experiments once again use technology developed by Millenium, and expand on the very promising results of OSTEO(TM) experiments flown in 1998. Specific issues addressed are:
 - Exploring how disturbances in sleep and immune functions may cause
 impaired bone metabolism;
 - Characterising and identifying bone gene regulation patterns in
 microgravity; and
 - Exploring the use of parathyroid hormone (PTH) to increase bone
 formation in microgravity.


ERISTO

European Research in Space and Terrestrial Osteoporosis (ERISTO) is a European-based science program dedicated to the utilisation of microgravity to further terrestrial bone research. Facilitated by an agreement between the CSA and European Space Agency (ESA), Millenium has generated the first commercial microgravity sale of hardware and support to ESA. This first flight for ERISTO on STS-107 will utilise the hardware developed for the OSTEO(TM) program. The ERISTO payload contains scientific experiments from Italy and France.

For further information: Inquiries should be directed to: Sheema Inayatulla, Technical Communications Coordinator, Millenium Biologix Inc., 785 Midpark Drive, Kingston, Ontario, Canada, K7M 7G3, Tel: +1 (613) 389-6565, Fax: +1 (613) 389-6625

Web site: http://www.millenium-biologix.com/
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Publication:PR Newswire
Geographic Code:1CANA
Date:Jan 15, 2003
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