Regenerative medicines firm BioTime has teamed up with XenneX to establish LifeMap Sciences, an intiiative that aims to develop and commercialize a database of cell lineages derived from embryonic stem cells, together with their molecular markers. The resource will allow users to chart the development of embryonic stem cell lines to the purified progenitor cell lines generated by BioTime using its ACTCellerate™ technology. LifeMap aims to make aspects of the database available to institutions and industry through paid subscriptions or on a fee-per-use basis.
XenneX already commercializes its GeneCards® relational database of genes in human DNA. The firm says the LifeMap initiative aims to provide stem cell scientists and companies with a resource that will help them determine which cells they may need for their research. “Working with XenneX, we plan to accomplish the first detailed roadmap of the complexities of thousands of cell types that arise from human embryonic stem cells,” remarks Michael D. West, Ph.D., president and CEO at BioTime. “We believe the database created by LifeMap Sciences will benefit cell biologists and will provide high visibility to our diverse portfolio of novel progenitor cell types currently marketed to the research community.”
BioTime operates in two separate fields: stem cell technology and products for use in regenerative medicine, which are being developed by its Embryome Sciences subsidiary; and blood plasma volume expanders and related technology.
The firm’s stem cell capabilities hinges on a combination of its technology for generating human induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSC), and its ACTCellerate platform for the scalable production of purified human progenitor cell types from hES or iPS cells. Initial products generated by BioTime’s Embryome Sciences subsidiary include about 100 progenitor cell types made using the ACTCellerate technology, together with its ESpanTM cell growth media for the growth of human embryonic progenitor cells, and an array of human embryonic stem cell lines carrying inherited genetic diseases such as cystic fibrosis and muscular dystrophy.
Announcement of the LifeMap Sciences initiative follows just a couple of weeks after BioTime confirmed completing the merger of Glycosan BioSystems into its wholly owned orthopedics cell therapy subsidiary OrthoCyte.
XenneX’ flagship GeneCards resource is a searchable, integrated, database of human genes designed to provide concise genomic, transcriptomic, genetic, proteomic, functional and disease-related information on all known and predicted human genes.