Mission, values & story
By integrating an unequalled know-how on iPSC and their application to in vitro testing, Phenocell's mission is to support in a sustainable way all the steps of your innovation, accelerating & making results more predictable for human applications
Phenocell is a research-based R&D company specialized in the design of phenotypic assays for research and drug discovery using iPSC-derived somatic cells.
Phenocell is here to help your research and discovery programs with highly relevant in vitro tools and assays.
Using the Nobel Prize winning technology of cell reprogramming, we create foot-print free, xeno-free human iPSC and somatic cells.
The possibility of producing embryonic-like stem cells from an "adult" somatic cell is the result of several years of work by a young Japanese physician-researcher, Shinya Yamanaka and two collaborators. The idea was to artificially reproduce the "stem" condition of embryonic stem cells (ESCs) in somatic cells by forcing them to express key genes. Mocked by the scientific community, Shinya Yamanaka persisted in his idea and indeed succeeded, in 2006, in identifying a set of 4 genes sufficient to give back to mouse fibroblasts the original qualities of ESCs, pluripotency and self-renewal. These new cells were called "induced pluripotent stem cells" (iPSC). Transposed to human cells in 2007, the technology was quickly successful and has since been the subject of an impressive number of publications and patents. As the applications of this revolutionary technology are countless in scientific and medical fields, Shinya Yamanaka was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physiology/Medicine in 2012, at the age of 50.
As a Research Director at Inserm, Brigitte Onteniente PhD. have integrated iPSC technology into her work since 2008 in order to evaluate its therapeutic potential in stroke. The approach was very effective in animals, but too new to be transposed to clinical applications at the time. Therefore she decided to create Phenocell in order to offer the largest number of people the possibility of using iPSC for R&D work.
Initially dedicated to the field of rare diseases, for which the technology is particularly adapted, the activity did not find the institutional support necessary for the production of pathological iPSC and was oriented towards two more generalist sectors: skin and nervous system. These two sectors are today the two main areas of activity of Phenocell, which has developed a panel of innovative and unparalleled R&D tools to offer unique analytical approaches to the academic and industrial sectors.
Founded in 2013 at the GENOPOLE (Evry), Phenocell benefited from an environment conducive to development in the site's incubator until 2018, when growth required an exit from the Incubator. Phenocell has moved to Grasse (06), in a Business Center dedicated to Biotechnology, GrasseBiotech. We can thus continue our development in the best conditions.
Brigitte Onteniente PhD