n February 2020, Genprex signed an exclusive license agreement with the University of Pittsburgh for an innovative gene therapy technology developed by lead researcher, George Gittes, M.D. at the Rangos Research Center at the University of Pittsbugh Medical Center ("UPMC") Children’s Hospital. The diabetes gene therapy candidate, GPX-002, which is being evaluated in preclinical studies, reprograms alpha cells in the pancreas into functional beta-like cells, thereby replenishing levels of insulin and providing the potential to cure the disease. The novel infusion is by means of an endoscopic procedure that delivers Pdx1 and MafA genes to the pancreas. The genes express proteins that transform alpha cells in the pancreas into functional beta-like cells, which can produce insulin but are distinct enough from beta cells to evade the body’s immune system. GPX-002 has been tested in vivo in mice and nonhuman primates. In studies in non-obese diabetic mice, a model of Type 1 autoimmune diabetes, the gene therapy approach restored normal blood glucose levels for an extended period of time, typically around four months. According to the researchers, the duration of restored blood glucose levels in mice could potentially translate to decades in humans.