Stem Cells


Stem Cells can differentiate into any cell types of the body. At Roche we are utilizing the enormous potential of human stem cells to test potential new drugs in vitro. Induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSC), in particular, are derived from adult cells, such as skin cells and blood cells, and are reprogrammed to a pluripotent stage: once re-programmed, they exhibit similar properties as embryonic stem cells. These offer the opportunity to access patient cells in an ethically responsible way and allow us to test drugs on human cells outside of the body. Stem-cell derived cells are used both as disease models as well as for the assessment of compound safety. Of particular interest are stem cell-derived cardiac cells, neurons, endothelial cells, adipose cells, liver cells and many more. At Roche, we are also investing effort in developing tri-dimensional culture systems for stem-cell derived stem cells, which would allow access to tissue models that are closer to an operating organ.

Drawn to Science: Stem cells in research

Tags: Screening Technologies, Drug Safety