ALAMEDA, Calif.—BioTime Inc., a biotechnology company thatdevelops and markets products in the field of stem cells and regenerativemedicine, and XenneX Inc., a biomedical research tool provider, recentlyannounced the formation of LifeMap Sciences Inc., a joint effort that plans tomake available a database for use by stem cell researchers.
"The opportunity to develop a platform for stem andprogenitor cells is one we could not let pass," said Dr. David Warshawsky,chairman of the board of XenneX, in a statement. "The aging baby boompopulation and rising costs of healthcare make cost-effective therapies inage-related diseases a near-term necessity. Stem and progenitor cells lines areinstrumental in helping researchers develop therapeutics for these diseases. Weaim to give them one place to find all the information they need to determine whichcells they need for their research and the cell-related information necessaryto develop life-saving cures in the future."
The database will permit users to follow the development ofhuman embryonic stem cell (hESC) lines to the purified progenitor cell linescreated by BioTime using its proprietary ACTCellerate technology through paidsubscriptions or on a fee-per-use basis.
ACTCellerate was invented as a means of generating more than140 diverse human progenitor cell types from hESC or induced pluripotent stemcells (iPS) in a scalable and highly purified state. These diverse cell lineshave applications in basic laboratory research and are being marketed for thatpurpose.
"XenneX currently commercializes GeneCards, a leadingrelational database for information on each of the thousands of genes in humanDNA, a resource widely used by medical researchers," stated Dr. Michael D.West, president and CEO of BioTime. "In a similar manner, working with XenneX,we plan to accomplish the first detailed roadmap of the complexities of thethousands of cell types that arise from human embryonic stem cells. Just asGeneCards has benefitted the field of molecular biology, we believe thedatabase created by LifeMap Sciences will benefit cell biologists, and will providehigh visibility to our diverse portfolio of novel progenitor cell typescurrently marketed to the research community."