Cellular Dynamics Announces Launch of World’s Largest Public Stem Cell Bank With 300 Available iPSC Lines

The Madison, Wisconsin-based biotechnology company, Cellular Dynamics, has announced the launch , of the world’s largest public stem cell bank and the availability of the first 300 iPSC lines.

Cellular Dynamics International, Inc. (CDI), a FUJIFILM company, has announced the launch of the world’s largest publicly available stem cell bank, the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM) hPSC Repository.  Additionally, CDI has also announced the availability of the first 300 induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC) lines in September, 2015.  These high quality, disease-specific iPSC resources are now accessible to academic and industry researchers to model diseases, target discovery and drug discovery.

In 2013, CDI was awarded $16 million by the CIRM to create induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC) lines for each of 3,000 healthy and diseased volunteer donors across 11 common diseases and disorders to be made available through the CIRM hPSC Repository.

In September, the CIRM hPSC Repository will make the first 300 iPSC lines available to researchers.  These lines include cells from healthy donors and donors suffering from non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH), dilated cardiomyopathy, diseases of the eye and autism.  The number of available cell lines is expected to increase to 750 by February 2016.

iPSC lines can be created from any individual, and thus provide a powerful tool for understanding disease as well as studying genetic variation between individuals. Patient samples are collected primarily from standard doctor’s office blood draws.

The iPSC lines are accompanied by detailed demographic and clinical data and each line was derived from tissue samples collected from living donors.

iPSCs have the potential to be differentiated into any cell type in the human body, and CDI already routinely manufactures 12 iPSC-derived cell types, including high-quality heart, neural, liver and endothelial cells, in high quantity, and at very high levels of purity.  Through CDI’s MyCell® Product portfolio, researchers can order iPSC line(s) of interest and have them differentiated into the cell type of choice.

Researchers can obtain undifferentiated iPSC lines through the Coriell Institute for Medical Research.

What are researchers saying about this advance:

Kaz Hirao, CDI Chairman and CEO, said, “iPSCs are proving to be powerful tools for disease modeling, drug discovery and the development of cell therapies, capturing human disease and individual genetic variability in ways that are not possible with other cellular models. We’ve seen a dramatic increase in the availability of iPSC lines. We’re pleased to be the vendor of choice for creating high quality iPSC lines and enabling scientists from academia and industry to better understand and help develop treatments for major diseases. The lines available from the CIRM stem cell bank directly complement CDI’s ability to provide differentiated cells corresponding to each of these iPSC lines, which will allow researchers to model the diseases represented, better understand disease progression, perform more targeted drug discovery, and ultimately lead to better treatments.”

Jonathan Thomas, Ph.D., J.D., CIRM Chairman, said, “We believe the bank will be an extraordinarily important resource in helping advance the use of stem cell tools for the study of diseases and finding new ways to treat them. While many stem cell efforts in the past have provided badly needed new tools for studying rare genetic diseases, this bank represents common diseases that afflict many Californians. Stem cell technology offers a critical new approach toward developing new treatments and cures for those diseases as well.”

Michael Christman, Ph.D., president and CEO of Coriell said, “Coriell Institute is a leader in managing large and complex biospecimen collections and distributing samples and data worldwide to promote research. We are very pleased to be part of this CIRM initiative and advance stem cell research for several devastating yet common diseases.”