Cytocentric Blog

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Cytocentric Visionaries: Michael Gilkey, CEO Trailhead Biosystems

Part Three: Let the Cells Lead the Way through the Matrix and Don’t Be Afraid of Change.

Alicia Henn, Chief Scientific Officer, BioSpherix

 

In Part Two, we talked to Michael Gilkey, CEO of Trailhead Biosystems about the many different projects they have planned.

Here, we continue the conversation, talking about the leap that researchers have to take to leave their old way of doing things and invest in a system defined by the cells. This conversation was edited for length.

 

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Cytocentric Visionaries: Michael Gilkey, CEO Trailhead Biosystems

Part Two: How to Get that Just-Right Cell in the Middle

Alicia Henn, Chief Scientific Officer, BioSpherix

 

In Part One, we talked to Michael Gilkey, CEO of Trailhead Biosystems about the power of Trailhead’s unique combination of robotics, Design of Experiments-based methods, and mathematical modeling to identify the best combinations of reagents for recapitulating cell development in vitro.

Here, we continue the conversation, talking about all the different cell types Trailhead is addressing with their unique platform.

 

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Cytocentric Visionaries: Michael Gilkey, CEO Trailhead Biosystems

Part One: Optimizing Cell Media in 12 Dimensions: You Can’t Do This by Hand

 

Alicia Henn, Chief Scientific Officer, BioSpherix

In addition to being CEO of the Ohio start-up Trailhead Biosystems, Michael Gilkey is the Director of Strategic Partnerships for the National Center for Regenerative Medicine. Michael and his team have established a unique platform for Design of Experiments Theory-based cell differentiation optimization. Trailhead uses an Xvivo barrier isolator system from BioSpherix to protect the cells from room air and maintain physiologic oxygen levels

Here, Alicia talks with Michael about using a 12-dimension hypercube of variables, robotics, and mathematical modeling to quickly identify the best combinations of components for media used in cellular therapeutics. This conversation was edited for length.

 

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Cytocentric Visionaries: Donald Phinney

Part 3: The Cell Cycle Is the Redox Cycle, and All Clinical MSC are Stressed

In Part Two, Chief Scientific Officer Alicia Henn talked with Dr. Phinney about MSC, the exosomes that they produce and therapeutics. Today we talk about MSC and oxidative stress in vitro. This conversation was edited for length.

 

You set up MSC and macrophage to interact on a stage to study them. Any good play begins with a stressor and in this case, it was oxidative stress.

DP: This is something that has evolved over a number of years now. It is quite clear that bone marrow is a low oxygen environment. Oxygen saturation varies across the bone marrow and sinusoids, but it is certainly low. For many years, because they had little choice in the early days, people grew cells in atmospheric oxygen.

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Cytocentric Visionaries: Donald Phinney

Part Two: MSC vs Exosomes and Therapies

In Part One, Chief Scientific Officer Alicia Henn talks with Dr. Phinney about his publication in Nature Communications, ”Mesenchymal stem cells use extracellular vesicles to outsource mitophagy and shuttle microRNAs”[Phinney et al., 2015]. Here we continue that conversation (edited for length).

 

What direction are you taking your exosome research?

DP: I’m fascinated that there are so many papers suggesting that exosomes have as many applications as MSCs. The idea for a number of years has been that MSCs are a unique cell therapy product because they can adapt to their microenvironment. Various companies’ websites clearly state that their therapy is advantageous because if the cells are in an ischemic or inflammatory environment they can respond appropriately and produce paracrine factors to mitigate the effects of that environment.

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