Licensing of human liver cell line from the Army
TechLink helped the Army to establish a licensing agreement for a human liver cell line that will be used to find cures for some of the world’s most pressing diseases, including malaria.
The human liver cell line was developed at the Armed Forces Research Institute of Medical Sciences, a branch of the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research (WRAIR) located in Thailand. This immortalized cell line can continue to grow and divide indefinitely in glass flasks. Because the cells retain normal cell functions, they can be used to evaluate the effect on humans of candidate drugs and therapeutics. This makes the cell line valuable for preclinical trials.
Screening of candidate drugs for pharmacology and toxicology is an important means of finding new lifesaving medical treatments. DoD has a strong interest in finding compounds with military applications, such as clotting agents, antibiotics, and vaccines.
The licensee is Siam Life Science, a company in Bangkok that helped the Army to develop the human liver cell line. Siam Life Science will use this cell line to evaluate malaria and other disease treatments. In addition, it will sublicense the cell line to other medical research companies. In this way, the Army’s human liver cell line will become a valuable tool in the global fight against major diseases.