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Human Embryonic Stem Cell Culture Training Process

Stem Cell Culture Training Process
Photo by Robert A. Lisak
Yinghong Ma feeding human embryonic stem cells with media

The Yale Stem Cell Center is pleased to offer training for investigators in the State of Connecticut (CT) who have extensive cell culture experience but are not yet experienced in handling human embryonic stem cells (hESCs). The hESC Core will provide training and ongoing support in thawing, maintenance, expansion, differentiation, and cryopreservation of the hESCs.

Training Requirements:

Yale investigators who are interested in being trained in the hESC Core Facility must complete the following requirements:

  1. Review the Yale Provost's policy on hESC Research
  2. Complete the training required by the ESCRO Committee. Training and Certification at Yale.
  3. Be an approved investigator on an approved Embryonic Stem Cell Research Oversight (ESCRO) protocol.
  4. Complete the training required by the Stem Cell Research Resource Allocation Protocol (SCRRAP) Committee.
  5. Complete the Request for hESC/iPSC Culture Training form.

Investigators from other institutions must provide evidence of ESCRO approval/training from their home institutions and submit a Request for hESC/iPSC Culture Training form.

hESC Core Facility
Photo by Robert A. Lisak
Caihong Qiu viewing human embryonic stem cells under the inverted phase contrast microscope

Training Schedules and Fees for Courses

The hESC/iPSC Culture training has been developed for two audiences: Novice and Experienced. Both require completion of the Training Requirements listed above. The Novice course is a 2.5-day course and it is offered 5 days per week from 1:00 - 4:00 p.m. This course is for users who have never cultured hESCs and would benefit from a hands-on training from hESC Core staff. The training schedule is as follows:

Day 1—Lecture on hESCs; Identify undifferentiated and differentiated hESC colonies; make/check feeders and medium; Feed hESCs.

Day 2—Passage hESCs on feeders to new feeders by weeding.

Day 3—Form EB for differentiation; make Matrigel plate.

Day 4—Pass hESCs by cut-paste from feeder-free serum-free to feeder-free and serum-free conditions.

Day 5—Check cells; discussion, and presentation of certificate.

Fees for the Novice hESC/iPSC Culture training course are charged on a per person basis. For trainees who are not affiliated please contact Caihong Qiu.

The number of individuals who can be trained at one time is limited to four. Course fees include all training supplies needed to develop hESC lines. The new lines that are grown during training will remain the property of the hESC Core upon completion of the training. Trainees with a valid Yale ID will be provided with access to the hESC Core Facility and to the on-line scheduling software for scheduling the use of the equipment.

The Experienced course is for users who: a) were trained at other institutions, or b) are familiar with culturing human cells and work with experienced researchers who will be responsible for training the new users on how to culture hESCs/iPSCs. All hESC Core Facility users must attend an orientation on hESCs and training on the use of the hESC Core Facility. The Experienced course is a 2-hour session that includes a 1-hour presentation and a tour of the hESC Core Facility. The fee for this course is $60 per trainee.

Prioritization of Training Requests

After fulfilling the above requirements, investigators will be assigned training slots by priority based on the following criteria:

  1. Yale recipients of CT Stem Cell Research Awards,
  2. CT-wide recipients of CT Stem Cell Research Awards,
  3. Other Yale stem cell research investigators,
  4. Other CT-wide stem cell research investigators, and
  5. Other professionals.

For additional information, please contact Alison Bonds at 203-785-5658.