Biotechnology company bit.bio has launched a range of immune cells to provide researchers with a consistently functional and rapid human in vitro model for the study of neuroinflammation and neurodegenerative diseases.
The company’s ioMicroglia cell range is designed to recapitulate key human microglia functions and as such, can mediate inflammatory responses, dispose of unwanted materials, and carry out immune surveillance.
In the body, microglia are integral to the central nervous system, providing first-line innate immunity, and are a focus for the development of potential therapeutic interventions for neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease. To study microglia, researchers currently use animal models, primary human microglia, or (human induced pluripotent stem cell) hiPSC-derived microglia generated through traditional directed differentiation methods, although each of these has specific limitations.
Animal models however do not translate accurately to humans. Primary human microglia can be difficult and time-consuming to isolate and maintain in culture, with inherent donor-to-donor variation and limited scale. Traditional directed differentiation protocols are complex, time- and resource-intensive, and struggle with lot-to-lot consistency.
Bit.bio has used its cellular reprogramming technology to deliver defined, functional, and physiologically relevant hiPSC-derived ioMicroglia with lot-to-lot consistency at scale.
ioMicroglia can also form stable and functional co-cultures with ioGlutamatergic Neurons in vitro from 24 hours post-thaw. These co-cultures allow the modelling of brain complexity to gain insights into critical microglia-neuronal intercellular interactions.