SCN industry partner, Morphocell Technologies, secures US$40M in Series A financing to advance ReLiver®, an innovative cell therapy for liver disease

April 4, 2024 (Montréal, QC/Ottawa, ON) – Today Morphocell Technologies announced US$40M in Series A financing to advance its first therapeutic product, ReLiver®, a novel cell therapy platform that promises to transform the treatment of liver disease.

Based in Montréal, Morphocell Technologies is a preclinical regenerative medicine company that was born out of game-changing research originally funded by the Stem Cell Network (SCN).

In 2016, Drs. Massimiliano Paganelli and Claudia Raggi from Centre Hospitalier Universitaire Sainte-Justine set out to find an alternative solution for pediatric patients who require liver transplants. Their proposed answer was to develop and test an implantable stem cell-derived liver tissue to restore the liver functions in patients, alleviating the need for a transplant and immunosuppressant drugs.

It was a novel idea and SCN was excited to take a risk and invest nearly $200,000 in the research – an investment which ultimately led to the creation of Morphocell Technologies in 2018. Since that time, SCN has invested just under one million dollars in liver-related research led by Dr. Massimiliano Paganelli and his research team.

This significant financial milestone, led by Genson Capital, a Montreal-based investor specializing in life sciences and MedTech, sets Morphocell on a ground-breaking path toward a first-in-human clinical trial aimed at transforming liver disease treatment globally.


“On behalf of Canada’s Stem Cell Network, I’d like to extend our sincere congratulations to the Morphocell Technologies team on securing Series A funding. We are thrilled to have been first-in on their ground-breaking research. This is yet another example of Canadian research excellence and a testament to how regenerative medicine, and products like ReLiver®, will change the future of health care.”

-Cate Murray, President and CEO, Stem Cell Network

“A few years ago, our research would have been seen as high risk. Not all research funders would have taken that risk, but the Stem Cell Network saw the potential and provided critical early support to advance our technology. This Series A financing is more than just a capital boost; it’s a leap forward in our mission to bring life-saving solutions to those battling liver disease.”

-Massimiliano Paganelli, MD, PhD, Co-founder, President and CEO, Morphocell Technologies

Quick Facts:

  • Chronic liver disease affects one in four
  • There are over 100 different types of liver disease caused by a variety of factors such as viruses, toxins, genetics, alcohol and other unknown causes.
  • One of the most common liver diseases in Canada is non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD), which affects over seven million Canadians.
  • In-hospital procedures for liver disease patients – including transplants – have cost the health system an average of $39 million annually.
  • Data from the Canadian Institute for Health Information shows that between 2016 and 2021 an average of 94 patients die annually while waiting for a liver transplant.

About the Stem Cell Network: The Stem Cell Network (SCN) is a Canadian not-for-profit that supports stem cell and regenerative medicine research; training the next generation of highly qualified personnel; and knowledge mobilization and transfer of stem cell and regenerative medicine research. From the lab to the clinic, SCN’s goal is to power life-saving therapies and technologies through regenerative medicine research for the benefit of all. Created in 2001, with support from the Government of Canada, the Network has grown from a few dozen labs to more than 270 world-class research groups, supporting over 250 research projects and 30 clinical trials. Since its inception, over 25 biotech companies have been catalyzed or enhanced and more than 6,400 highly qualified personnel have been trained. In 2021, the Government of Canada demonstrated its continuing trust and support in SCN with an investment of $45 million for the 2022–2025 period.

About Morphocell Technologies: Morphocell Technologies is a Montreal-based regenerative medicine company focused on the development and commercialization of stem cell-derived tissue and organ replacement therapies. Its iPSC-derived platform technology has a large pipeline potential touching different organ deficiencies, with severe liver disease being the initial focus. Morphocell prides itself on its culture of innovation, technical excellence, and commitment to improving patients’ lives.

Media Contacts:
Samantha Rae Ayoub
Vice President, Communications & Knowledge Mobilization
Stem Cell Network

Mathieu Pagé