Research platform: Humanized Model Systems and Cell Engineering
Stem cell technologies and gene editing techniques are two of the most promising recent developments in biomedical science. The ability to reprogram common cells, such as those in blood, and turn them into the multipurpose cells the body uses to regenerate tissue has already become a powerful research tool and has great therapeutic promise. And the use of enzymes to alter gene sequences, for example by repairing disease-causing mutations, could soon be widespread. Both are valuable in developing personalized disease models and personalized therapies alike. They are complimented by new methods of growing and testing human tissue in mice – humanized models.
Charité and MDC conduct internationally recognized esearch in these areas and they plan to further develop it in the BIH Translational Research Commons through the establishment of a Stem Cell and Disease Model Center to anchor its Humanized Model Systems and Cell Engineering Platform.
In particular, the platform will support researchers who carry out patient-specific stem cell studies; test new human models for stem cell research; further develop gene-editing techniques; and develop and design humanized models in such areas as cross-species transplantation and “organs-on-a-chip”. The platform aims to conduct research at the highest level.