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  • Yuguo Lei



Project TitleAn Automated Miniature Device/Process for Personalized Cell Manufacturing
Track Code2016-069
Short Description

This technology is a device/process to produce high yields of autologous cells in a closed cell culture system.

Tagstherapeutics,  stem cells,  cell culture,  alginate hydrogel,  research tool,  pharmaceuticals,  3D bioreactor
Posted DateFeb 8, 2017 2:03 PM


Yuguo Lei

Technology Description

This technology is a miniature device/process to produce high yields of autologous cells for personalized medicine. It uses hydrogels to grow stem cells in a closed cell culture followed by the differentiation of those cells into the desired cell type within the same device.


Figure 1. An integrated miniature bioprocessing for iPSC expansion and differentiation into NSCs. (a) Illustration of the bioprocessing. (b) The miniature cell culture device consists of a pump for medium perfusion, an oxygen-permeable plastic bag for stocking medium and a closed 15 ml conical tube. Fibrous hydrogel fibers with cells were suspended in the tube. (c) On day 0, single iPSCs were mixed with 10% PNIPAAm-PEG solution at 4°C. With a syringe and needle, the mixture was injected into room temperature E8 medium contained in a closed and sterile 15 ml conical tube with a septum cap. Fibrous hydrogels (with diameter <2.0 mm) were instantly formed. (d, e) The cells were cultured in E8 medium for 5 days, followed by additional 7 days of neural induction medium in the conical tube. Medium was continuously perfused. (f) On day 12, hydrogel scaffolds were liquefied by placing the cell culture tube on ice for 5 minutes. (g) Cell spheroids were pelleted by spinning the tube at 100 g for 3 minutes. Medium was removed. (h) Cell spheroids were incubated in Accutase at 37 °C for 10 minutes. Removing reagents from the tube and adding reagents to the tube were done with a sterile syringe through the septum cap. (i) Magnetic beads coated with anti-SSEA4 antibodies were added into the tube to pull down the undifferentiated SSEA4+ iPSCs with a magnetic cell separator. (j) Purified cells in the supernatant were transferred into a new, close tube and transported to the surgical room. (k) NSCs were transplanted to the rat brain with a stereotactic injector.

Inventive Feature(s)

•  Cells are cultured, reprogrammed, and expanded in a hydrogel scaffold with automatic medium perfusion
•  Closed 3D cell culture


•  Limits contamination – closed cell culture and point of care procedure removes risk of cross-contamination during cell culture transportation
•  Lower cost – cGMP facility and highly-skilled technicians are not required  
•  Miniature device – cells sufficient for one patient can be produced in a small device (e.g. 15 mL tube)
•  High cell yield – one procedure will produce enough cells to treat a patient
•  High cell purity
•  Can be used at patient’s point of care

Potential Application(s)

•  Personalized cell manufacturing for:
-  Reprogramming adult cells into iPSCs
-  Expanding stem cells for transplants
-  Differentiating stem cells into their derivatives
-  Purifying and concentrating cells

Intellectual Property

Patent application filed


Related Technologies

Licensing Contact

Arpi Siyahian, Ph.D.
Technology Manager
Phone: 818-599-2543

About NUtech Ventures

NUtech Ventures is the non-profit technology commercialization affiliate of the University of Nebraska—Lincoln. Our mission is to facilitate the commercialization and practical use of innovations generated through the research activities at the University of Nebraska.


File Name Description
Tech Brief 2016-069 The technology brief is a one-page summary describing the technology, inventive features and benefits over the current state of the art. Download