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A 48-Week, Phase 2b/3a, Double-Blind, Randomized, Placebo Controlled, Multi-center, Superiority Study to Evaluate the Efficacy and Safety of JointStem, Autologous Adipose Tissue Derived Mesenchymal Stem Cells in patients diagnosed with Knee Osteoarthritis

IRB Number: 2021-0514

Institutional Review Board, Hospital for Special Surgery

August 30, 2022

The safety of study participants is our top priority. The trial is approved and periodically reviewed by an Institutional Review Board (IRB), which includes doctors, administrators, ethicists, and members of the general public. The safety of clinical trials is reviewed by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

Before enrolling in a clinical trial, the investigator will explain the purpose of the trial, its expected benefits, any possible risks or side effects, and what your role will be. This is the time to ask questions! If you want to join the trial, you must sign the informed consent documents. You can leave a clinical trial at any time without penalty.

For further information, see Understanding Clinical Trials.

Principal Investigator

Sabrina M. Strickland, MD


Andreas H. Gomoll, MD


We are conducting a study investigating the effects of of JointStem, an autologous adipose tissue-derived mesenchymal stem cell injection, in patients with knee osteoarthritis. This product consists of adult stem cells that are isolated from a patient’s own abdominal fat tissue and expanded to the desired dose for injection, and it is administered to synovial cavity to improve symptoms and to delay the progression of osteoarthritis by regenerating and restoring damaged cartilage. Please note that this is a randomized blinded study, with study participants receiving either the JointStem injection or a placebo control injection in a 1:1 ratio. If you qualify for this study the costs of lipoaspiration and injection would be completely covered.  

• 2-week Screening period, 48-week treatment to follow up period

• 140 subjects to be randomized

– 12 month enrollment period, competitive enrollment

• Subjects are randomly assigned into one of the following two arms in a 1:1 ratio (1 JointStem : 1 Placebo):

– Test product: JointStem (1x108 cells in 2.1mL Normal Saline with 0.9mL Autologous Serum)

– Placebo control: 2.1mL Normal Saline with 0.9mL Autologous Serum

Inclusion/Exclusion Criteria

Inclusion Criteria:

  • Subject who had osteoarthritis of knee diagnosed (according to the clinical and American College of Rheumatology Criteria)
  • Subject who has ≥ 34 on WOMAC function score at Screening and Baseline
  • Subject who has knee pain ≥ 50 mm out of 100 mm on VAS (Visual Analog Scale) at Screening and Baseline
  • Subject who has radiographic evidence of grade 3 osteoarthritis in one knee and grade 1 or 2 in the other knee based on the Kellgren and Lawrence radiographic criteria.
  • Subjects whose knee pain persists for at least 12 weeks (about 3 months) prior to screening and does not improve symptoms with non-operative treatment options
  • Subject who is willing to discontinue all pain medications for osteoarthritis except rescue medication (< acetaminophen 3.25 g per day) at least 72 hours prior to screening and throughout the duration of study
  • Subject who is willing and able to give written informed consent for participation in the study

Exclusion Criteria:

  • Subject who has Body Mass Index (BMI) > 35 kg/m2
  • Subject who has any of following clinically significant disease or has a medical history of past
  • Uncontrolled comorbid disease under treatment
  • Kidney diseases (glomerulonephritis, chronic renal failure, etc.)
  • Liver diseases (acute and chronic liver diseases including fatty liver, liver cirrhosis, etc.)
  • Endocrine diseases (hypothyroidism/hyperthyroidism, thyroiditis, diabetes insipidus, Cushing's disease, etc.)
  • Subject who has any of following clinically significant disease
  • Autoimmune diseases
  • Paget's disease, ochronosis, acromegaly, hemochromatosis, or Wilson's disease
  • Genetic diseases (hyperkinesia, collagen gene abnormality, etc.)
  • Inflammatory joint disorders (e.g. rheumatoid inflammation)
  • Infectious joint disorders (e.g. septic arthritis)
  • Other joint disorders (e.g. gout, recurrent pseudogout, articular fracture, primary osteochondrosis, villonodular synovitis)
  • Subject who has a history of cancer or is diagnosed with cancer and currently receiving cancer treatment
  • Subject who is positive in pathogenic test (HIV, viral hepatitis, or syphilis)
  • Subject who has heart diseases (myocardial infarction, coronary artery bypass graft surgery, arrhythmia, or other serious heart diseases) or has history of heart diseases within 6 months prior to Screening
  • Subject who have received any intra-articular therapy in any joint within 6 months prior to Screening, or surgery on the relevant knee including articular endoscopic procedures within 6 months prior to Screening
  • Subject who has history of prolotherapy, or platelet rich plasma injection within 6 months prior to Screening
  • Subject who have received long-acting hyaluronic acid injection (e.g. Synvisc-One®, etc.) within 12 months prior to Screening
  • Subject who has history of stem cell therapy
  • Subject who have significant lab abnormalities for the following parameters (If the value is within 10% of the listed laboratory exclusion criterion value and the value is considered not to be clinically significant by the investigator, the subject can be considered for enrollment):
    • Serum ALT and AST > 2 x upper limit of normal
    • Serum creatinine out of normal range
    • PT/INR out of normal range
    • Hemoglobin < 10 g/dL for female subject and hemoglobin < 11 g/dL for male subject
    • Platelets out of normal range
  • Subject for whom the investigator judges the lipoaspiration can cause any problem
  • Subject who has history of local anesthetic allergy
  • Subject who has taken anti-inflammatory drugs (prescription and non-prescription NSAIDs), symptomatic slow acting drugs (glucosamine, chondroitin sulfate, diacerhein etc.), or oral steroids (prednisone etc.) within 14 days prior to Screening (however, those who undergo a 14-day wash-out period can participate.)
  • Subject who is an active drug/alcohol abuser
  • Pregnant or breast-feeding women, or women or men who are not using appropriate method of contraception (appropriate method includes hormones, bilateral tubal ligation, and barrier method with spermicide, and intra-uterine device for women and vasectomy and barrier method with spermicide for men; subjects should agree to use appropriate method)
  • Subject who is enrolled in any other clinical trials within 3 months from Screening
  • Subject who the principal investigator considers inappropriate for the study due to any other reasons than those listed above

Contact Information

Sabrina Strickland, MD 
523 E 72nd St
New York, New York 10021
United States