University of Wisconsin–Madison

Advance furthers stem cells for use in drug discovery, cell therapy

July 14, 2017

CVRC trainer, William Murphy, and former trainee, Eric Nguyen, develop new material for growing and raising stem cells that could allow researchers to move away from using Matrigel.

This week, a UW–Madison team reports in Nature Biomedical Engineering that they have jumped a major hurdle on the path toward wider use of stem cells.  Using an automated screening test that they devised, William Murphy, a professor of biomedical engineering, and colleagues Eric Nguyen and William Daly have invented an all-chemical replacement for  the confusing, even dangerous materials, now used to grow these delicate cells.

“We set out to create a simple, completely synthetic material that would support stem cells without the issues of unintended effects and lack of reproducibility,” Murphy says.

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