Evry University – I-Stem

Address 28 rue Henri Desbruères, 91100 Corbeil-Essonnes
Platforms ATMP & Biological, Biomarkers
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I-Stem, the Institute of stem cells for the treatment and study of monogenic diseases (Evry) is an international referral R&D center dedicated to the development of treatments based on pluripotent stem cells (iPS and ECs) applicable to rare genetic diseases. Its aim is to promote these approaches from their development to their transfer to clinical research. I-Stem has 80 employees.

The Stem Cell Institute for the Treatment and Study of Monogenic Diseases (I-Stem), created on January 1, 2005, is a research and development center dedicated to developing treatments based on the potentials offered by pluripotent stem cells and applicable to rare diseases of genetic origin. I-Stem is made up of two distinct administrative entities of roughly equal size, one associated with public establishments (Inserm/UEVE 861, whose scientific director is Cécile Martinat) and the other directly linked to AFM-Téléthon (CECS, Center for the Study of Stem Cells, whose scientific director is Marc Peschanski). However, there is no separation between the two entities on the functional level and the I-Stem Institute is presented as a set of teams in which work personnel attached indifferently to one or the other of the administrative structures. The Institute has an executive management made up of a scientific director (Marc Peschanski) and a general manager (Raymond Zakhia), and a management board which includes all the heads of teams and programs, scientific and administrative. .

Defined by three keywords, “therapeutics”, “monogenic diseases” and “pluripotent stem cells”, I-Stem’s field of activity extends from fundamental research into pathological mechanisms to the transfer of new therapies to clinical research. The programs of each of the research teams are devoted either to a set of genetic diseases, or to the development of new technologies around the major instruments implemented in the Institute. Currently, the main pathological indications studied concern diseases of the muscle, motor neurons, skin, retina and those associated with abnormalities in the development of the central nervous system. The team that brings together the technological platforms explores the major tools for cell production and high-throughput screening of compounds, automated cell imaging, high throughput sequencing and technological innovations in cell biology. The research teams interact on a permanent basis with each other, around common projects and around the technical platforms which are all shared.

The I-Stem teams are involved in numerous collaborative networks with both academic and industrial research teams, within the framework of programs that concern various aspects of the therapeutic use of pluripotent stem cells. In particular, they participate in two major national infrastructures (IngeStem and Neuratris), in European networks and in research and development consortia financed by the National Research Agency.

Since its origin, I-Stem has developed an important information and training activity, from introductory visits aimed at the general public to internships lasting several months for colleagues interested in technology transfer (in the past, the reprogramming of iPS lines for example; today the use of CRISPR for the creation of isogenic cellular models of pathologies), through the management of student internships (Masters 1 and 2), the supervision of theses of PhDs and post-docs.

This institute is part of NeurATRIS, the French part of EATRIS.