Wei-Shou Hu received the Amgen Award in Biochemical Engineering at the ECI Conference in Biochemical and Biomolecular Engineering in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico.
Graduate student Arpan Bandyopadhyay received the award for best student/company presentation out of 87 participants at the same conference.
Differentation of Stem Cell To Hepatic Lineage
By culturing human embryonic stem cells as spheroids for differentiation to hepatic lineage, many liver functions are enhanced. The hepatocyte-like cells also have better morphological and structural characteristics of liver cells. They also have polarized structure as shown by polarized accumulation of fluorescent dye. (Subramanian, Owen, Raju et al. (2014) Stem Cell Develop., 23, 124)
Hyperproductivity Gene Set for CHO Cells
In this collaboration with researchers at Merck, the transcriptome dynamics in the course of cell line development, from host cell though steps of selection, amplification, clone isolation and fedbatch culture, was compared. Surprisingly, the product transcript levels were already high even before amplification. The data prompted us to propose the concept of “hyperproductivity gene set” for cell line screening in the post-genomic era. (Vishwanathan, Le, Jacob, Tsao, et al. (2014) Biotechnol. Bioeng. 111, 518).
"Memory" in Glucose Metabolism in Mammalian Cells
Mammalian cells adjust their glucose consumption rate in accordance of their growth needs and chemical environment by a very elaborate feedback and feed-forward regulatory network. Those regulations give rise to very complex behavior of multiple steady states. In industrial cell culture the complexity is amplified further by the push of culture conditions beyond the physiological range. Our recent work explains the often seen unpredictability of lactate consumption from a perspective of stability analysis and propose measures that can be taken to make the metabolism of cultured cells more predictable. (Mulukutla, Yonky, et al. (2014) PlosOne, 9, e98756; Yongky, Mulukutla, (2015) PlosOne, 10, e0121561)
Different Metabolic States Give Rise to Different Steady States in Continuous Processes
The complex glucose metabolism of cultured cells leads to multiple steady states in continuous cultures. These different steady states under the same operating conditions have vastly different cell concentrations and productivity. This can be shown both experimentally and theoretically. In this work we also discuss means to direct a continuous culture to the desired steady state. With the increasing interest in continuous cultures of mammalian cells this work is refreshing to bioprocess technologists. (Yongky, Lee, Le, Mulukutla, et al. (2015) Biotechnol. Bioeng. (in press))
Transcriptome Profile in CHO Cells
We established a well annotated Chinese hamster transcript by establishing a pipeline that will allow for periodic updates. We surveyed the transcriptome in Chinese hamster tissues and a number of CHO cell lines. We also took advantage of the sequencing depth of RNAseq to analyze the heterogeneity of transcripts to assess the variability of cell line populations. The transcript levels of genes in major pathways and gene classes are provided for quick referencing. (Vishwanathan, Yongky, Johnson, et al. (2015) Biotechnol. Bioeng. DO! 10.1002/bit.25513)
The NIH Biotechnology Training Program at the University of Minnesota, for which Prof Hu is the director, is entering its 21st year of NIH support. The program supports 16 PhD students from various graduate programs on campus to promote interdisciplinary biotechnology training.
Hu Group Members Visit the Itasca Biological Station
Graduate students Arpan Bandyopadhyay, Sofie O'Brien, Conor O'Brien, and Kevin Ortiz-Rivera stop for a picture while snowshoeing in Itasca February 2015.
Our Recent PhD Recipients
Congratulations to our two most recent PhD recipients!
This course has played a key role in training thousands of cell culture bioprocessing professionals. Over the past twenty years, the intensive short course on cell culture technology has educated over 2500 people from the pharmaceutical and biotech industries of over thirty countries.