Skip to main content
You are the owner of this article.
You have permission to edit this article.
Madison home to at least 10 stem cell companies
topical top story

Madison home to at least 10 stem cell companies

  • 0
CDI workers with cells on computer screen

Cellular Dynamics International, at University Research Park, is among at least 10 stem cell businesses in Madison. In this photo from 2017, Kaz Hirao, left, then CEO, looks at a computer image of eye cells with company researchers Lucas Chase, foreground, Kyle Wallace, behind left, and Brandon Shelley.

Cellular Dynamics International, co-founded in 2004 by UW-Madison stem cell pioneer James Thomson and three campus colleagues — Drs. Craig January, Tim Kamp and Igor Slukvin — became part of Fujifilm in 2015.

Located in University Research Park on Madison’s West Side, CDI sells a variety of cells grown from induced pluripotent stem cells, and is preparing cell therapies for clinical trials.

CDI may be the best known stem cell business in Madison. But there at least nine more, according to a list compiled by the university. The others:


  • : Founded by neuroscientist Su-Chun Zhang, the company produces brain cells from stem cells.

Cellular Logistics

  • : Focused on repairing injured heart muscle, its co-founders include scientist Eric Schmuck and Drs. Peiman Hematti, a specialist in blood disorders, and Amish Raval, a cardiologist.


  • : Based on research by gerontologist Craig Atwood, the company is developing therapies to reverse age-related hormone imbalances.

Opsis Therapeutics

  • : Based on research by Dr. David Gamm, an ophthalmologist, the company is developing treatments for blinding disorders.


  • : It sells tools to help stem cells grow efficiently, including in large-scale production.

Regenerative Medical Solutions

  • : Based on research by Dr. Jon Odorico, a transplant surgeon, the company is developing a cell therapy for diabetes.


  • : It uses stem cells to screen drugs or chemicals for birth defects and identify biomarkers for autism.

Stem Pharm

  • : A spinoff from the lab of biomedical engineer William Murphy, it sells materials to help stem cells grow into complex tissues.


  • : A nonprofit, it distributes many types of stem cells, including the original five lines by James Thomson.

Be the first to know

* I understand and agree that registration on or use of this site constitutes agreement to its user agreement and privacy policy.

Related to this story

  • 8 min to read

Dr. David Gamm is one of about 100 faculty researchers using stem cells to model diseases, screen drugs or develop cell therapies at UW-Madison, where James Thomson gained international attention 20 years ago this month by announcing the world’s first isolation of human embryonic stem cells.

Get up-to-the-minute news sent straight to your device.


News Alerts

Badger Sports

Breaking News