Now in its 9th year, the World Stem Cells and Regenerative Medicine Congress has seen a shift in industry focus from predominantly science, to translation and commercialisation, and manufacturing. Chris Parker’s talk demonstrated this evolution well, and discussed how scale enables the broad application of iPS cells.
Chris Parker, VP and CCO for Cellular Dynamics International Inc., began with the idea to take an application perspective to open the door for new preclinical/clinical work. One example given was methods to detect toxicity in the unmet cardiotoxicity market. Current animal models are inadequate, so generating iPS lines from QT trials to produce cardiomyoctes could eliminate the requirement of thorough QT studies, saving millions and preventing testing for null hypothesis.
Working with Coriell, CDI now automate the generation of iPS cells to create multiple clone cell banks. A triple HLA matched cGMP iPS cell line (much like Thomas Fellner at Lonza spoke about) will also be available for researchers by the end of 2014 for clinical development.
The go home message from this important talk? To enables broader research, generation of material at scale is pivotal.
Ben Weil for Total BioPharma at WSCRM Congress, London
Ben is an EngD research student at University College London. His work, in collaboration with SpheriTech Ltd., is in designing a novel purification step to isolate rare cell types derived through human pluripotent cells.