About Axol Bioscience
How can I avoid the time-consuming cell reprogramming and differentiation processes that have no direct relevance to my research interests? Wouldn't it be better if the cells that I need for my research were readily available? The co-founder of Axol, Yichen Shi, had these questions in mind while he was developing a cellular model of a brain disease in the Gurdon Institute at the University of Cambridge. At the time, Yichen developed a simplified protocol to make brain cells from iPS cells. However, it still took weeks to generate differentiated neural cells and characterize them for an experiment.
Long laborious work on maintaining and differentiating multiple iPS cell lines are distracting researchers from focusing on their real biological questions (and family lives, too)! Many colleagues expressed that it would be much better if we could just purchase the differentiated cells instead of spending weeks to make them. However, there was not a single company that supplies these differentiated cells to academic research labs. This triggered Yichen to come up with the idea of developing a cell supply website where scientists could purchase ready-made, well-characterized stem and functional cells derived from iPS cells and download easy-to-understand protocols and video guides for handling them. Totally hassle-free!
Luckily, this idea is supported by a Cambridge biotech entrepreneur and investor Dr. Jonathan Milner. Jonathan not only provided investment but also joined the venture as a founding director. We are now devoted to make high quality, data-rich cellular products that are affordable for all research labs including starting up labs! We believe that all research labs should have easy access to the cells generated using the reprogramming and downstream differentiation technologies.