Cellular Dynamics Awarded Four Therapeutic Discovery Grants Totaling Almost $978,000 for Induced Pluripotent Stem Cell Programs

Nov 04, 2010, 08:00 ET from Cellular Dynamics International, Inc.

MADISON, Wis., Nov. 4, 2010 /PRNewswire/ -- Cellular Dynamics International, Inc. (CDI) announced today that it has been awarded a total of $977,915 for investments in four qualifying therapeutic discovery projects.  CDI, the world's largest producer of human tissue cells for drug discovery and safety, will use the grant money to advance the development of its programs in hepatocytes, neurons, endothelial cells, and creation of multiple induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC) lines.  All of CDI's products are based on iPSC technology.

The IRS Qualifying Therapeutic Discovery Project (QTDP) program, created by Congress as part of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010, provides a tax credit or grant equal to eligible costs and expenses for tax years 2009 and 2010. The maximum amount awarded for each grant was $244,479.25, and only companies with no more than 250 employees were eligible to apply. Projects were evaluated on their potential to result in new therapies to treat areas of "unmet medical need;" prevent, detect, or treat chronic or acute diseases; reduce long-term healthcare costs; or significantly advance the goal of curing cancer within a 30-year period. The total amount to be shared across awarded grants was $1 billion.

"CDI continues to focus on its mission of manufacturing human tissue cells based on iPSC technology in the quantity, quality, and purity required by our drug research customers.  Our iCell Cardiomyocytes product line has set the bar," said Robert Palay, CDI CEO and chairman of the board. "We are pleased to have been recognized as a leader in the field through these grant awards.  We plan to use these funds to help us launch additional tissue cell products into the market so they can help speed the development of new lifesaving drugs."

Chris Parker, CDI Chief Commercial Officer, continued, "We look forward to developing these products with our pharmaceutical customers to best meet their needs. One advantage of iPSC technology is that it provides our customers with the opportunity to compare the responses of tissue cells from different ethnic or disease backgrounds—thus enabling 'in vitro clinical trials' before drugs or therapies under development reach animals or humans, resulting in a  decrease in drug development costs and an increase in safety."

About Cellular Dynamics International

Cellular Dynamics International, Inc. (CDI) is a leading developer and marketer of next-generation stem cell technologies for drug development and personalized medicine applications.  CDI harnesses the power of pluripotent stem cells and their ability to differentiate into any cell type for world-class drug development tools.  In addition, it is the leader in iPSC technology, the production of pluripotent stem cell lines from adult tissue.  CDI was founded in 2004 by James Thomson, a pioneer in human pluripotent stem cell research at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and Tactics II Ventures, a Wisconsin-based venture capital fund.  CDI's facilities are located in Madison, Wisconsin.  See www.cellulardynamics.com.

SOURCE Cellular Dynamics International, Inc.