NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – French genome engineering firm Cellectis and the Center for iPS Cells Research and Application of Kyoto University today announced a collaboration to combine their technologies to develop induced pluripotent stem cells, or iPS, as cellular tools.
iPS cells are adult cells that have been reprogrammed to behave like embryonic stem cells and theoretically can differentiate into other cell types. However, the ethical controversies that have surrounded the use of embryonic stem cells are not associated with iPS, the two firms said in a statement.
The collaboration will combine Cellectis' genome engineering technology with CiRA's iPS technology "to rationally engineer the genome of these cells in order to provide better control over their behavior," they said in a joint statement.
Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
David Sourdive, executive vice president of corporate development for Paris-based Cellectis, added that the collaboration supports an approach developed by his firm with Ectycell, a subsidiary dedicated to the industrial use of iPS cells.
"Together, we believe we can maximize the natural synergy between these two complementary approaches to cell engineering to develop technology that could have a major impact in the stem cell field," he said.