UK Stem Cell Bank
The UK Stem Cell Bank (UKSCB) was established in 2003 to be the UK's national repository for human embryonic stem cell lines derived within the UK. The UKSCB store, characterize and supply ethically approved stem cell lines for both fundamental research and the development of cellular therapies. It was the first government funded public service collection of stem cells and it has played an important role in developing and maintaining standards in both the UK and internationally. Primarily funded by UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) the UKSCB is located at the National Institute for Biological Standards and Control, a centre of the UK regulatory body the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency.
The two primary objectives of the UKSCB are the banking and supply of highly characterized hESC lines for use as starting material in the development of cellular therapies alongside the creation of physical and process standards to facilitate the translation of new discoveries within the regenerative medicine field.
In addition to this the UKSCB is also involved in a range of UK and international research projects, providing independent qualification of protocols for using human pluripotent stem cells, developing new microbial agent detection systems, enhancing cryopreservation methods to reduce contamination, and running an annual training course with Harvard University. The UKSCB has an important role in the UK's regenerative medicine infrastructure and frequently collaborates with researchers and regulators to find solutions to regulatory challenges for the use of stem cells in medical applications.