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King's College London develops stem cell lines free of animal products

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Human embryonic stem cell lines free of animal products are now available for the global research community to use. Scientists at King's College London announced that they submitted their first cell lines, known as "xeno-free" stem cells, to the UK Stem Cell Bank. The cells were cultured without the use of animal products such as porcine enzymes, bovine serum or mouse feeder layers, the college said, adding that they have the potential to become the "gold standard" lines for developing new stem cell-based therapies. Researchers grew the lines from frozen embryos donated by patients who underwent IVF treatment and didn't want to save remaining stored embryos. The frozen embryos would otherwise have been discarded. Release