iPS cells can transform into any cell in the body without the need for embryonic stem cells. Until now, they have been developed manually. But to do so requires specialized knowledge and extensive training. Researchers never rested because of the need to change the medium daily.
The Institute for Frontier Medical Science asked Panasonic to develop a system to ensure consistency no matter who worked on the cells. Panasonic has extensive expertise in production equipment, but when it came to detailed information on the cell culture process, it relied on the experts at the institute.
The resulting automated cell culture system mimics the movements of cell cultivators and is packed with proprietary Panasonic technologies to maintain accuracy in every step of the process. The incubator can store 60 petri dishes and an optical microscope monitors conditions to determine optimal timing of passages.
The ongoing goal is to reach more patients faster with new treatments using iPS cells. Now the continuous cultivation of the cells needed to achieve that goal is being made possible through this small apparatus developed by Panasonic.
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