NextCell Pharma & The Stem Cell Revolution

Like the IT-revolution has changed our way to handle data and communication, stem cells will revolutionize almost any aspect of medicine including treatments for cancer, inflammatory and autoimmune disorders as well as regeneration of new tissues.

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Welcome to NextCell Pharma, by CEO and founder Dr. Mathias Svahn

The human body is extremely complex and we need complex tools to defeat today’s incurable diseases.  NextCell Pharma utilizes stem cells unique potential to restore normal body functions. The quality and potency of the stem cells is absolutely fundamental – this is our area of expertise.

I welcome you to join NextCell Pharma in our mission to bring the next generation of stem cell therapy to patients.

Watch Mathias present Next Cell Pharma (in Swedish)

ProTrans™ - For Autoimmune & Inflammatory Diseases and Transplants

We are developing ProTrans™ for therapeutic immunomodulation of autoimmune and inflammatory diseases including for transplantation applications.

Mesenchymal stem cells have proven to have immunomodulatory effects. ProTrans is an “off-the-shelf” product based on Wharton’s Jelly derived Mesenchymal Stem Cells (WJMSC). ProTrans is an Advanced Therapy Investigational Medicinal Product (ATIMP).

Type 1 Diabetes

Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune condition in which the immune system is attacking the insulin producing cells in the pancreas. The causes of this autoimmune reaction is not known and is not linked to modifiable lifestyle factors. There is no cure and it cannot be prevented. Only 5% of people with diabetes have this form of the disease which is usually diagnosed in children and young adults. Between 20-40 million are living with type 1 diabetes worldwide.

ProTrans will be given to patients directly after diagnosis. It is the immunomodulating effect of the stem cells in ProTrans is given in an attempt to protect the insulin producing cells and to modulate the immune system. The effect might be transient, resulting in an longer honeymoon phase or reduced need of insulin, but the goal is to reprogram the immune system to accept the body's own insulin producing cells.

Renal Transplant

Kidney transplantation has become standard therapy for eligible patients with end stage renal disease. The number of transplants has increased rapidly over the last two decades. However, the demand for organs has increased even more. Deceased donor kidneys are the origin of the majority of all transplants, 50 000 annually. The criteria for an acceptable kidney has been modified to include so called marginal kidneys and donors. Transplants with marginal kidneys have a higher risk of rejection.

ProTrans is to be given to the patient at the time of transplantation and will protect the kidney, empowering the engraftment. High risk patients would receive ProTrans in addition to conventional immunosuppression with the purpose to foster the engraftment of the marginal kidney.

NextCell Pharma AB

The company is located in Karolinska Institutet Science Park, adjacent to the Karolinska University Hospital. in Huddinge. The region includes a cluster for stem cell research and is a perfect location for advancing stem cell technologies.
NextCell Pharma is a tissue establishment and primary biobank, classified as healthcare provider. Its activities are inspected by the government agency, The Health and Social Care Inspectorate (IVO).

Stem Cells and Immunology in Synergy

NextCell Pharma is an innovative Biotech growing out of the need for Advanced Therapy Medicinal Products for Autoimmune Disease and Transplantation. Cellaviva, the first Swedish family saving stem cell bank, with its expertise in umbilical cord stem cells and Diamyd Medical with its interests and investments within autoimmune diseases made a natural partnership for creating NextCell Pharma. A plan for testing NextCell Pharma’s first product ProTrans in the clinic is in place.


Mathias Svahn, CEO
Ph.D. and co-founder, background as scientific manager at KI and country medical manager at Roche.

Edvard Smith, CSO
MD,Ph.D., professor, co-founder and medically responsible for NextCell Pharma AB and Cellaviva.

Ylva Bäckström, Commercial director.
MSc, experienced marketer within business to consumer

Anders Essen-Möller, Business development director.
MSc, founder of Diamyd Medical AB and Synectics Medical AB

Maria Hägg, QA/QR manager.
Ph.D. Background from clinical grade cell production and advanced therapeutic medicinal products (ATMP)


Anders Essen-Möller (chairman)
Board member and founder of Diamyd Medical AB and Synectics Medical AB.

Hans-Peter Ekre
Background as investment manager at Karolinska Development and R&D manager at Pharmacia, Astra and Biotech companies.

Edvard Smith
Professor of molecular genetics. His research has resulted in the identification of several disease genes and to new treatments.

Niclas Löwgren
Private investor and board member in Copperstone Resources AB and QuiaPEG Pharmaceuticals AB.


Scientific Advisors

Edvard Smith, MD, Professor in Molecular Genetics at the Department of Laboratory Medicine, Karolinska University Hospital and Karolinska Institutet, Huddinge, Sweden.
Gunvor Ekman-Ordeberg, MD, professor
in Obstetrics and gynecology at Karolinska University Hospital and Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden.
Per-Ola Carlsson, MD, professor in Medical Cell biology and experimental endocrinology at the Department of Medical Sciences, Transplantation and Regenerative medicine, Akademiska University Hospital, Uppsala, Sweden
Timo Otonkoski, M.D. Professor of Medical Stem Cell Research, Children's Hospital and Biomedicum Stem Cell Center, Program of Molecular Neurology, University of Helsinki, Helsinki, Finland
Xiao-Dong Chen, MD, Professor and VA Research Health Scientist; Chief, Regenerative Medicine Program; Department of Physiology, University of Texas Health Science Center, San Antonio, USA


Cellaviva will always be the first Swedish family cell bank for stem cells and is the only biobank with approval from Swedish authorities. Cellaviva and NextCell Pharma have a high scientific profile with a strong network with academic researchers.

Family stem cell banking and cord blood banking is a proven business model. Expectant parents all over the world have been offered to store stem cells from their newborn children for more than two decades. Today 200 companies have stored stem cells from more than 4 million children, globally.