Characterization of Stem Cell Copy Number Variation by aCGH at the Wisconsin International Stem Cell Bank

Fast Accurate Results Accelerate Stem Cell Science

Following isolation of human embryonic stem cells (hESC) at the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 1998 and subsequent approval of specific cell lines by the NIH, efforts are underway to thoroughly characterize these cell lines including Gene Expression Profiling, Karyotyping, Comparative Genomic Hybridization (CGH), Flow Cytometryanalysis for ESC Marker Expression, Growth Characteristic (Doubling Time) analysis, Post-Thaw Viable Cell Recovery analysis, and Identity by Single Tandem Repeat (STR) analysis. These detailed characterization studies facilitate identification of cell line best suited for specific applications and provides information on the relationship between the genetic characteristics of each stem cell line and their functional properties. Founded in 1999, the WiCell®Research Institute established its cytogenetics laboratory in 2005 to meet the needs of researchers to monitor karyotypic stability and copy number variation in hESCcultures. Starting in February of 2010, WiCell®provides cultures of the formerlyfederally approved lines1 which were previously available from the National Stem Cell Bank(NSCB) under US government contract funding in effect from 2006 to 2010. WiCell’scontract with the NIH ended on February 28, 2010. Cell lines previously available from the NSCB can now be ordered from the Wisconsin International Stem Cell Bank (WISC Bank).


  • Karen D. Montgomery, Ph.D, WiCell Research Institute,
  • Seth Taapken, MS-Biotech, WiCell Research Institute,
  • Ben Nisler, BS, WiCell Research Institute,
  • Thomas E. Strader, MS-Biotech, Heartland Biotech,


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