Frequently Asked Questions

General Questions

What is a Red Cell Therapeutic?

A Red Cell Therapeutic is a red blood cell that has been genetically engineered into a medicine for the potential treatment of cancer and autoimmune diseases.

How is a Red Cell Therapeutic made?

  • Red blood cells (RBC’s) live for approximately 120 days and are continuously replenished by the body to maintain healthy levels in circulation.
  • RBC’s are replenished from immature precursor cells in the bone marrow. Rubius uses these immature precursor cells to create its Red Cell Therapeutics.
  • These immature precursor cells are collected from healthy O-negative blood donors and are purified.
  • To turn these immature cells into medicines, Rubius uses a process called genetic engineering to insert an extra gene or genes into the cell.
  • This gene makes a therapeutic protein used to potentially treat the intended disease.
  • The cells are then placed into cell culturing tanks, where they grow and turn into red blood cells.
  • As the last step in the process, the cells lose their nucleus, leaving the therapeutic protein in or on the red cell
  • Except for the therapeutic protein, the red blood cells appear to be just like red blood cells made in our bodies.

How is a Red Cell Therapeutic given to a patient?

Red Cell Therapeutics are administered via a short infusion into a vein and infusion time will vary, depending on the dose level.

In what treatment setting is a patient given a Red Cell Therapeutic (e.g. doctor’s office, transfusion center)?

The Red Cell Therapeutic will be given at the clinical trial center.

How do I know the donor’s cells used to make Red Cell Therapeutics is safe?

  • The cell supply that Rubius Therapeutics uses to create Red Cell Therapeutics is rigorously tested for safety and quality and comes from certified centers that meet federal safety standards.
  • Donors are screened for infectious diseases and the blood is tested for any infections, similar to other blood-based products.
  • Before administration of any of our RCT product candidates, cross-matching tests will be performed to ensure the compatibility of the product to the patient.

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