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Life Technologies and CDI partner to commercialize novel stem cell technologies

Life Technologies Corporation will partner with Cellular Dynamics International, producer of human cells derived from induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells, to commercialize a set of three new products optimized to consistently develop and grow human iPS cells for both research and bioproduction.

The partnership marries CDI’s leadership in human iPS cell development with Life Technologies’ expertise in stem cell research tool manufacturing and global distribution network to make these novel technologies accessible to researchers around the world. Life Technologies’ commercialization of Essential 8™ Medium, Vitronectin (VTN-N), and Episomal iPSC Reprogramming Vectors addresses several challenges associated with developing relevant cells for use in a wide range of studies, from basic and translational research to drug discovery efforts. The effectiveness of these products is the focus of recent validation studies published in the journals Nature Methods and PLoS One.

“The launch of these new stem cell culture products furthers CDI founder and stem cell pioneer Jamie Thomson’s vision to enable scientists worldwide to easily access the power of iPSC technology, thus driving breakthroughs in human health,” noted Bob Palay, CDI Chief Executive Officer.

To eliminate the variability introduced by a mouse cell feeder layer previously used during the culture of human iPS cells, researchers have adopted "feeder-free" media. However, existing feeder-free culture media contain more than 20 interactive ingredients, many of which, such as bovine serum albumin and lipids, are highly uncharacterized and vary significantly from lot-to-lot. This leads to variability in iPS cell growth and differentiation and impedes the progress of disease studies and potential clinical applications.

Essential 8 Medium, manufactured in a Life Technologies current Good Manufacturing Practices facility, overcomes this barrier. In addition, bovine serum albumin and other undesirable components have been removed from the media, thus reducing the number of ingredients to just eight well-characterized elements required to support efficient growth, eliminate variability, and enable large-scale production of human iPS cells.

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