Special
5/2014

Cell-based Assays

In this issue:

Physiologically relevant cellular assays are increasingly used to test drug candidates or decipher complex signaling pathways. One major development in recent years has been the implementation of these assays in highthroughput systems. 3D cell-based screenings are also gaining momentum, since cells thrive better in a threedimensional microenvironment than in two-dimensional settings. Developers in bio pharma in particular have discovered the advantages of cell-based assays for testing the cytotoxicity and potency of their prospects. The future in the  eld looks bright. Analysts have forecast sales of over US$3bn in 2018 for the market that includes cell-based assays, cell lines, related equipment and software. To meet those high hopes, the  ve-year academicindustry partnership StemBANCC is aiming to provide well-characterised, patient-derived induced pluripotent stem cell lines and associated biomaterials in an accessible and sustainable biobank.