Loughborough University
Leicestershire, UK
LE11 3TU
+44 (0)1509 263171
Loughborough University

Centre for Biological Engineering

Development of a novel cell cryopreservation platform technology for the successful banking of human cells: using amphipathic polymers for human cell preservation

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This project aims to develop novel preservation platform technologies required for the successful banking of human cells, an absolute prerequisite for their use as products.

Current cryopreservation methods for stem cells typically employ DMSO as a cryoprotective agent but DMSO can be toxic to cells and lead to genetic and epigenetic instability. Furthermore, current processes often result in low cell recovery of some human stem cells. Trehalose, a membrane impermeable disaccharide, has previously been suggested as an alternative cryoprotective agent but its use has been restricted due to difficulties in delivering high enough concentrations into cells without causing damage. In this project we are using novel amphipathic cell permeating polymers (CPPs) developed by our collaborators at the University of Cambridge in order to overcome this issue.

We are working with both mesenchymal stem cells and human embryonic stem cells in order to investigate the CPP-mediated loading of trehalose into stem cells and how this impacts cryopreservation success. Depending on the initial outcomes we are interested in exploring a wider range of human cell types.

Funding body

Project dates / duration

February 2012 - January 2015

Project team



Dr Karen Coopman: K.Coopman@lboro.ac.uk, 01509 222513

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State-of-the-art facility

The facility is made up of a suite of Class 2 laboratories for cell growth, a bioelectrical facility and an analytical suite to service all laboratories.

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