07:52am Wednesday 23 October 2019

Step closer to stem cell answer for human diseases

Stem Cells Ltd, based at the Australian Institute for Bioengineering and Nanotechnology at The University of Queensland, is set to receive $470,000 in Queensland Government science funding.

The funding will ensure the growth of stem cell research in Queensland, taking the state’s leaders closer to developing cell-based therapies for a host of diseases.

Stem Cells Ltd Queensland manager Victoria Turner said her team would work with stem cell scientists to advance research into diseases such as schizophrenia, Down syndrome, Parkinson’s disease and heart disease.

Ms Turner said Stem Cells Ltd would ensure Queensland remained at the forefront of cutting-edge stem cell research.

“Stem cell research is an exciting and rapidly expanding field that is vital for basic research and understanding of diseases,” she said.

“Most importantly, stem cells are set to have a major impact on healthcare and innovation, offering novel scientific insights that can be used to direct the treatment of a multitude of diseases and, ultimately in the future development of cell-based therapies when cells become damaged by illness or injury.”

Stem Cells Ltd is a not-for-profit company established to grow the capacity of stem cell research in Australia, providing researchers in the field with highly specialised stem cell products, services and training.

This enables scientists to access valuable stem cell strategies for modeling human diseases, which in many cases represents the only option for gaining a better understanding in order to direct treatment.

Stem Cells Ltd is also expected to break down the barriers for new stem cell scientists to enter the field, providing them with the specialist technical expertise they need for stem cell culture and keeping up with the pace of development.

“The operation of this local state-of-the-art core facility in Queensland, with concentrated expertise in this area and dedicated to stem cell support services, facilitates entry for new Queensland scientists into this exciting area of research,” Ms Turner said.

“The promise of stem cell research is yet to be fully appreciated but Stem Cells Ltd is providing the necessary infrastructure to ensure the true potential of this field is realised.”

Stem Cells Ltd services to researchers will include cell line characterisation, custom generation of patient-specific induced pluripotent stem cell lines, multiple stem cell types, management of a stem cell bioinformatics database called Stemformatics and training in exemplar methodological approaches to stem cell biology.

Visit the StemCore website at www.stemcore.com.au or the Stemformatics database website at www.stemformatics.org.

Media: Erik de Wit (3346 3962, 0427 281 466 or e.dewit@uq.edu.au)
Stem Cells Ltd enquiries: Victoria Turner (3346 3472, v.turner@uq.edu.au)

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