The Center for Modeling Pediatric Disease is a state-of-the-art shared resource with the mission to automate stem cell research and provide an unprecedented repository of patient-derived stem cells for disease modeling and preclinical study. The system is contained in a BSLIIA enclosure for sample protection, easily adapted for a variety of assay protocols, and able to accommodate large scale production and handling. As the CMPD continues to develop under the direction of Dr. Sunita D’Souza, investigators will have increasing opportunities to leverage this phenomenal resource

Biorepository Overview
Biorepository Overview


The ability to faithfully model pediatric disease is central to the translational discovery process. The CMPD will provide investigators with the resources and technologies necessary to create reprogrammed stem cell populations from patient samples, expand these into appropriate cell types for further investigation, and bank them for future interrogation. The pace and scale of iPSC generation is daunting for individual labs, but with this dedicated facility, St. Jude investigators, and global collaborators, will be able to generate the materials and tools needed to explore disease mechanisms and evaluate preclinical and clinical approaches. 


The generated iPSC cells and resulting models with be a shared resource for St. Jude investigators, but it’s really for researchers around the globe. By freely sharing these models, we aim to accelerate research worldwide.

Michael Dyer, Member


  • Generate patient-specific induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) from skin, blood, tissue, and urine
  • Differentiate iPSCs into various cell lineages
  • Expand and bank patient-derived iPSCs for future use
  • Extract DNA/RNA from patient-derived samples for downstream genomic assays

Technology and equipment

  • Microlab VANTAGE Liquid Handling System
  • LabElite Capper/DeCapper
  • Biotek CYtation 5 Cell Imaging Multi-Mode Reader
  • Kingfisher Flex Sample Purification System
  • Thermo Scientific F7 Robot System
  • Bionex HiG Automated Centrifuge
  • Cytomat 24 C450 Series Automated Incubator (500 plate capacity)
  • Thermo Scientific Platefeeder Carousel
  • EnviroFlo Enclosure
  • BSLII Enclosure 


Geoffrey Neale

Sunita D’Souza, PhD

Director, CMPD