Fluidigm, develops, manufactures and markets proprietary Integrated Fluidic Circuit (IFC) systems that significantly improve productivity in life science research, will provide the latest updates for its upcoming Stem Cell Culture Chip at the World Stem Cell Summit being held in Baltimore on September 21 - 23. This specialized integrated fluidic circuit will enable a variety of cell culture applications, including allowing stem cell researchers to simplify and automate protocols for turning differentiated cells into stem cells, and later fine tuning the reprogramming of those stem cells into targeted differentiated cells.
Fluidigm has working prototypes of this chip and instrumentation operating in its R&D labs now. The commercially available product, which will standardize and automate the cell culture process, is expected to significantly speed development of stem cell understanding, reduce the complexity of reprogramming stem cells and lower the cost of this research by improving efficiency and shrinking labor requirements.
“Reprogramming a patient’s differentiated cells – such as skin cells – into stem cells overcomes the inherent ethical and immunological barriers to therapeutic usage of embryonic stem cells,” explained Marc Unger, Fluidigm’s chief scientific officer. “We believe our Stem Cell Culture Chip will be an enabling tool for stem cell researchers. By designing and building a stem cell-specific microfluidic chip in conjunction with a complete support system, we can automate much of mundane process steps and substantially reduce the complexity and cost of fundamental stem cell research.”
Fluidigm’s Stem Cell Culture Chip (and supporting instrumentation) will be able to seed chambers with stem cells and then feed those cells, as well as provide media exchange and an automated means to dose those cells with different reagents under programmable control. The cells can be easily analyzed using time-lapse microscopic images in both transmitted light and fluorescence.
Fluidigm develops, manufactures and markets proprietary Integrated Fluidic Circuit (IFC) systems that significantly improve productivity in life science research. Fluidigm’s IFCs enable the simultaneous performance of thousands of sophisticated biochemical measurements in extremely minute volumes. These “integrated circuits for biology” are made possible by miniaturizing and integrating liquid handling components on a single microfluidic device. Fluidigm’s systems, consisting of instrumentation, software and single-use chips, increase throughput, decrease costs and enhance sensitivity compared to conventional laboratory systems. Fluidigm products have not been cleared or approved by the Food and Drug Administration for use as a diagnostic and are only available for research use.