Scientists at I-Stem are currently using the CompacT SC to automate differentiation and expansion of stem cells, allowing the generation of human pluripotent cell lines of consistent high quality. They are then using the Fill-It system to prepare these cell lines for storage in the I-Stem biobank, which is France’s largest human embryonic stem cell bank. The cells produced are either stem cells containing specific disease mutations or stem cells for use in clinical trials as cellular therapies. Both of these approaches will enable advances in the treatment of many debilitating human diseases.

Dr Yacine Laabi, Senior Group Leader of Stem Cell Biotechnologies at I-Stem said: “My group is working with human pluripotent induced progenitor cells for skin, muscle, neurons and retina. We decided two years ago that automation was essential because it would offer us greater reproducibility in both process and cell quality. We reviewed systems from several companies but chose CompacT SC as the published literature shows the system works well with mesenchymal and neuronal stem cells and we believed it would be most suited to our research.”

Dr Laabi continued: “We use the CompacT SC to differentiate cells into specific lineages and it is ideal for this because the system has chilled storage for expensive cytokines, which allows us to add these at the correct time to maintain our cell lines in specific states. By using a newly developed flask adaptor, we can also process T75 flasks, so we can work with smaller scale cultures using less of the costly media and growth factors. We then use Fill-It to dispense our final stem cells harvests into cryovials for storage. This integrated workflow improves our process standardisation and reduces the chance of contamination because human contact with each cell line is kept to a minimum.”

Dave Thomas, Product Manager at TAP Biosystems concluded: “We are delighted our CompacT SC and Fill-It systems have passed the rigorous acceptance testing at I-Stem. I-Stem’s adoption of our technology is an excellent demonstration of how this automated workflow can be implemented for culturing and processing consistent high quality stem cells for use in many critical research and clinical programmes.”