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New Growth Technique Could Lead to Mass Stem Cell Production

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By introducing the cultures to this particular bioreactor process, the stem cells were grown in suspension, eliminating the problems inherent in growing the cells on surfaces—something the two say has never before been accomplished.

"This is an enabling technology," Prof. Zandstra said of the discovery. "[It] takes something we showed we could do before at low efficiency, but not at such numbers that could be used in manufacturing."

Fluri hopes his discovery, which is "more compatible with large scale processes," will help ease the "bottleneck of cell production" used for research and drug development. The new process also has the potential to make this phase of cell production safer and more stable, he added.

The research is published online in Nature Methods.

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