Emerging Company Profile Inflammatics: Building on serendipity

The idea for a cell-based immunotherapeutic vaccine treatment for rheumatoid arthritis came to J. Bruce Smith, a rheumatologist and professor of medicine at Jefferson Medical College in Philadelphia, from witnessing an improvement of symptoms in many of his RA patients during pregnancy.

Smith discovered that the women who improved during pregnancy were carrying fetuses with HLA (human leukocyte antigen) types dissimilar to themselves but similar to that of the father - which meant the fetuses could be seen as "allografts" or foreign grafts.

Protein shields He understood that a pregnant woman's immune system produces proteins that shield the developing fetus from rejection as a foreign body, and that this protective mechanism - known as the TH