Thaddeus G. Golos, Director
Projects to develop cell replacement therapies may require that researchers implant stem cells into nonhuman primates to test efficacy and assess possible side effects before proceeding to human trials. In this context, nonhuman primates will be made available through the Nonhuman Primate Services core at the Wisconsin National Primate Research Center. Specific services include the provision of appropriate monkeys and primate tissue for projects, specialized animal husbandry, assistance with procedures such as surgeries and clinical assessments of monkeys, and appropriate terminal procedures and preparation of tissues for analysis.
As a part of nonhuman primate services, Precision Medicine Precision Core Therapies Subunit at WNPRC directed by Igor Slukvin provides the MHC-defined preclinical model for novel hematopoietic stem cell therapies. Bone marrow transplantation core assists researchers in isolation and genetic modification/editing of hematopoietic stem cells, animal conditioning, bone marrow transplantation, and assessment of bone marrow engraftment.
Stem Cell Resource:
Dr. Thomson started a project to establish a NHP model for banking major histocompatibility (MHC) homozygous iPS cell lines for cellular therapies employing Mauritian cynomolgus macaques. These animals have a very limited MHC diversity and provide a unique opportunity to rapidly select MHC homozygous and MHC and blood group-identical animals, or animals with well-defined MHC mismatches, by genetic screening. Dr. Thomson has also began developing an arterial transplant model in Mauritian cynomolgus macaques. Performing arterial transplants between matched and mismatched Mauritian cynomolgus macaques will evaluate the immunological value of banking MHC homozygous iPS cells and eventually test the function of iPS cell-derived engineered blood vessels.
By developing basic resources broadly needed by all regenerative medicine investigators, Dr. Thomson’s laboratory played a central part in establishing pluripotent stem cell based therapies. To facilitate the translation of basic pluripotent stem cell research to human therapies, the Stem Cell Resources Unit develops expertise and reagents broadly needed by investigators developing primate iPS cell-based transplantation models, with a new focus on a unique population of MHC homozygous cynomolgus macaques.