Bringing automated, precision manufacture of complex 3d-tissue engineered implants a step closer to patients.

Bringing automated, precision manufacture of complex 3d-tissue engineered implants a step closer to patients.

bioreactor

Joint defects involving the surface cartilage and underlying bone are one of the major causes of osteoarthritis, the most common arthritic disease, affecting 25% of adults – especially the elderly – a problem exacerbated by a steadily ageing population.

Breakthroughs in developmental biology, have allowed Prometheus, the Division of Skeletal Tissue Engineering at KU Leuven, Belgium to create cartilaginous micro-tissues that can be used as building blocks for the bottom-up, 3D-assembly of functional tissue implants. These implants are effective in treating bone and joint surface defects in a range of pre-clinical animal models, paving the way for exploratory clinical trials in humans. The first step in the overall process, however, is the expansion of bone-specific stem cell populations that form the micro-tissue building blocks.

As a result of a productive collaboration with SCINUS Cell Expansion Netherlands B.V. (www.scinus.com), Prometheus has successfully adapted its existing manual, research-scale cell expansion process for use with the SCINUS bio-reactor. This enables the automated, GMP-compliant production of the required stem-cell populations, using a novel, single-use, cell-culture bag, the volume of which can be increased under controlled conditions as the cell number grows during the expansion process. Harvesting the resultant cell population is also facilitated by the use of dissolvable micro-carriers on which the cell-culture takes proceeds.

The work was conducted as part of an ongoing collaboration between Flanders and the Netherlands – RegMed XB (Regenerative Medicine Crossing Borders: https://regmedxb.com/) and is funded in Flanders by EWI (Dept. of Economy, Science and Entrepreneurship).

‘The SCINUS system will bring significant improvements in the efficiency and effectiveness of our cell expansion processes’ said Professor Liesbet Geris of Prometheus. ‘The bioreactor is also expected to become the first piece of hardware in a larger automated platform for the precision manufacturing of affordable, skeletal tissue-engineered implants, so addressing a major socioeconomic challenge presented by an ageing European population.’

Michiel Jannink, CEO of Scinus Cell Expansion, added, “We are really excited about this collaboration with Prometheus at KU Leuven. Our knowledge, expertise and products are very complementary and we both have the same mission: to bring the field of regenerative medicine further and as such closer to the patient!”

Contact / more Information:

  • Mr Michiel Jannink, PhD, CEO, SCINUS Cell Expansion Netherlands BV, Prof. Bronkhorstlaan 10 – Building 48, 3723 MB Bilthoven, the Netherlands. E-mail: michiel.jannink@scinus.com; tel: +31 (0)30 22 97 280; www.scinus.com.
  • Mr Stan Snowball, Phd MBA, Innovation Manager, Prometheus, Division of Skeletal Tissue Engineering, Skeletal Biology and Engineering Research Center, O&N 1, Herestraat 49 – box 813, 3000 Leuven. E-mail: snowball@kuleuven.be; tel: +32 16 37 39 83; www.kuleuven.be.

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About Prometheus at KU Leuven: Prometheus is a translational platform in the field of regenerative medicine. To achieve this, it integrates and advances the scientific and technological knowledge of its partners. This unique transdisciplinary team organizes its activities on the scientific, industrial-technical and preclinical level to develop robust and clinically relevant tissue engineering approaches for skeletal applications.

 

About SCINUS Cell Expansion :  Scinus Cell Expansion is a Dutch company which develops and distributes bioreactor technology for stem cell cultivation. Scinus’ mission is to make cell therapies accessible for a global patient population by means of developing an innovative bioreactor platform technology for the cell therapy industry. In addition to the development and marketing of bioreactor technology Scinus also offers process optimization and translation consulting services

LinkedIn; Twitter: @ScinusCell; Instagram: scinus.cell.expansion

Scinus Cell Expansion is a Dutch company which develops and distributes bioreactor technology for stem cell cultivation.