Bioreactor technologies

The work area of Dr. Nora Freyer focuses on the development of complex bioreactor technologies for 3D culture of primary cells and stem cells. Our aim is to provide 3D cell culture technologies for clinical translation of tissue engineering and stem cell biology into cell-based therapies. Both tissue-specific and pluripotent stem cells are under investigation as potential cell sources for deriving differentiated cells for extracorporeal organ support or cell transplantation. In addition, we work on down-scaled culture models for in vitro application in basic or applied research.

Research Focus

We work on the establishment of clinically relevant methods for cell expansion and differentiation of stem cells for application in cell-based regenerative therapies.
To address high performance mass exchange, we use a multi-compartment 3D bioreactor technology that provides continuous cell nutrition/ metabolite removal via perfusion and decentralized gas supply with controlled oxygen tensions. Thus, the technology facilitates high-density culture of cells with physiological cell-cell communication and soluble signal exchange. Different scales of the technology are available from large-scale bioreactors for clinical use to small-scale analytical bioreactors for in vitro research. Further developments include culture models and technologies for clinical wound therapy and skin cell transplantation.

Applying the technology platforms, we work on the establishment of methods for 3D expansion and differentiation of pluripotent stem cells, including human induced pluripotent stem cells (iPS cells). Within the scope of developing in vitro models for toxicity testing in pharmaceutical research we investigate strategies for hepatic differentiation of pluripotent stem cells. Studies address optimization of 3D cultivation processes, cell harvesting techniques, and culture media development using design of experiments (DoE) methods. Characterization and quality assessment of the cells in different differentiation stages are performed on the basis of functional, molecular biological and immunological criteria. Studies are performed in collaboration with an international network of researchers.

Contact

Dr. Nora Freyer

Charité - Universitätsmedizin Berlin
Berlin-Brandenburg Center for
Regenerative Therapies
Campus Virchow-Klinikum
Augustenburger Platz 1
13353 Berlin

Phone:+49 (0)30 450 552 501
Fax: +49 (0)30 450 569 915
E-Mail: nora.freyer@charite.de