U.S. Department of Health and Human ServicesHHS National Institutes of HealthNIH National Center for Advancing Translational SciencesNCATS

Robotic Cell Culture, Multi-Lineage Directed Differentiation, and Translational Application of Human iPSCs

Posted on August 27th, 2019 by claire.malley@nih.gov

Members of SCTL presented a poster at the ISSCR 2019 conference. The poster is entitled: Robotic Cell Culture, Multi-Lineage Directed Differentiation, and Translational Application of Human iPSCs.

Authors (underlined, presenting): Carlos A. Tristan, Pinar Ormanoglu, Claire Malley, Yu Chen, Christopher P. Austin, Anton Simeonov, Ilyas Singeç

Download the full size poster here.

More information about ISSCR 2019.


Clinical translation of human induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) critically depends on implementing robust, scalable, and standardized methods for quality-controlled cell lines and their optimized long-term growth and functional differentiation. Currently, culturing iPSCs is variable and labor-intensive and these process development and manufacturing limitations pose major challenges for many downstream applications of patient- and disease-specific cell lines. Here, we established robotic workflows under defined feeder-free conditions that fully automate and industrialize all essential steps of iPSC culture, thereby allowing parallel-processing of multiple cell lines and directed differentiation into various cell types. Importantly, single-cell transcriptomic analysis of different pluripotent cell lines demonstrated that robotic cell culture can produce highly homogenous and pure populations of ectodermal, mesodermal, and endodermal precursors. These multi-lineage precursors were further differentiated into functional cells (e.g. neurons, cardiomyocytes, hepatocytes) and utilized for assay development enabling high-throughput screening. Taken together, this work demonstrates how automation can help to overcome translational challenges in the stem cell field and facilitate standardization and scalability of the iPSC technology for disease modeling, drug discovery, and cell therapeutics.