Abiogenesis stem cellsAxiogenesis, a preclinical biotechnology company specializing in the development and production of induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC)-derived cells and tissues for preclinical applications, and Metrion Biosciences, the specialist ion channel CRO, have signed a collaboration agreement to validate, optimize and commercialize iPSC-derived cell based assays to facilitate drug discovery and more accurately predict cardiac arrhythmia and neuronal risk.

Under the terms of the agreement, Axiogenesis will share newly developed iPS-derived cardiomyocytes and neurons with Metrion for detailed profiling and validation on its high quality screening platforms, and Metrion will use commercial Axiogenesis cell products in its optimized ion channel screening, cardiac safety and translational phenotypic assays.

Improved cardiac safety assays using iPS cardiomyocytes are a vital part of the FDA’s Comprehensive in vitro Proarrhythmia Assay (CiPA) initiative, of which both Axiogenesis and Metrion are active participants. Combining Metrion’s expertise in ion channel contract research services and assay development with Axiogenesis high quality human iPSC-derived cells will provide a source of well-validated stem cell-derived neurotoxicology and CiPA-compliant cardiac safety assays, as well as screening services for predictive toxicology and translational drug discovery.

“Metrion is currently working with Axiogenesis iPSC-derived cardiomyocytes to validate its cardiac ion channel assays,” said Dr Marc Rogers, Chief Scientific Officer, Metrion Biosciences. “This new collaboration will enable us to extend this work, to use iPS neurons for pain and other neuroscience therapies and to create more predictive neurotoxicology assays that will enable the potential risk and side-effects of new compounds to be assessed more accurately and cost-effectively.”

Felix von Haniel, Commercial Director at Axiogenesis, said:  “We greatly value interaction with highly competent and specialist partners like Metrion. This collaboration will expand the range and reach of applications of Axiogenesis cells and assays, and will further underline the predictivity of our cells for drug discovery and safety and toxicology purposes.”