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KEMRI to Host National Reference Laboratory for Stem Cell Research in Kenya

KEMRI is to host the National Reference Laboratory for Stem Cell Research in Kenya as part of the Vision 2030 flagship Project at a tune of Kes. 77 million. The lab is to be housed at KEMRI’s Centre for Biotechnology Research and Development (CBRD) in Nairobi.

During her visit to KEMRI on 28th February 2022 to receive end term progress report, the NRF Acting CEO Dr. Jemimah Onsare said that KEMRI was identified as one of the few institutions in Kenya that will spearhead stem cell research as National Reference Centre for Stem Cell research in the country.

Prof. Sam Kariuki, the Acting Director General KEMRI said that this Unit will greatly improve the research mandate, of the Institute. “The focus on stem cell research is quite unique, and the board is keen to see it succeed. If successful, many patients in the country will get a reprieve, as they will not need to travel abroad for treatment”. He added.

Dr. Onsare on her part, indicated that, the NRF is committed to ensuring that the project moves to the next level through capacity building for the stem cell research team. The NRF is the major partner that is supporting KEMRI to acquire resources required to purchase equipment and conduct training to its dedicated stem cell scientists. “We are glad that this project is finally coming to fruition after rigorous consultations and benchmarking. KEMRI, is doing a great work here especially in the lab section |” She noted after touring the lab section to see the progress of the project. Some of the machines include; Live Cell Imager designed to operate inside the cell-culture incubator, enabling maintenance of cells under optimal conditions, BD cell sorter, medical freezer, cryogenic storage drawers, Centrifuge and ION Gene studio. 

The NRF team promised to lobby for more funding from partners to support KEMRI in conducting its research in order to place the country in the global map in matters health research and more specifically in stem cell.

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