I think there's some confusion around a lack of #cultivatedmeat (CM)-relevant cell lines & the role of private industry vs. public funds in alleviating this issue. Conversation on this topic spurred by this recent article & below:

Private industry has pioneered CM & brought concept to reality in <6 years. This has spurred investments into industry, which may be >$1B total by year end. This is good. We don't have time to waste in developing CM. We need urgency & investment to be matched by the public sector
Private industry success has driven academics & students toward CM. But they have few places to go to for funding. GFI's research grants program awards $ millions of grants each year, but we reject a growing # of great proposals each year (not enough $)
A shortage of public funds available for scientists is not unique to #cultivatedmeat. But to date, only a little >$12M in public $ has been awarded to CM projects. A drop in the bucket compared to other approaches to mitigate climate change & reduce antibiotic resistance.
Let's talk cell lines. It is true that nearly every week I see requests in my inbox for cell lines from academic researchers but also from new cultivated meat startups & life science companies. Relevant cell lines are clearly in demand but hard to come by.
W/o a cell line, you can't start a research program. W/o a cell culture medium, you can't grow a cell line. Well-characterized cell lines are the first tool that's needed to make cultivated meat into a genuine research discipline & fuel a research engine for industry growth.
There's some worry that the public knowledge base of cultivated meat is being built on the back of cell lines from mice such as C2C12 or 3T3-L1, which are what we see in publications & research proposals.

Also that most of the knowledge & progress to date is private.
We need to create & characterize cell lines/types from a wide range of species, from cows to chickens to fish to crustaceans. We need to understand the nuances between what we know about human & mouse muscle biology and culture conditions vs. other species.
That knowledge base enables us to explore other areas of need in the CM value chain (media, scaffolds, bioprocess). ⬆️ public funds train the future workforce & churn innovation through iteration. Public funds enable testing of new ideas bc they come w/ different risk profiles
Public funds build foundational knowledge that raises the floor & supports industry growth moving forward. That starts with well-characterized cell lines that serve as relevant & reproducible models across research programs.
So where should cell lines come from? Well, we've funded several cell line projects, but they take time. We've set up a partnership w/ a biobanking repository, but have seen little in the way of cell lines being deposited
Many groups partner w/ a farm or animal science dept, but those primary cells are kept internal and really only serve as a source for individual research groups. By their nature, they are harder to share & serve as a standard model.
Altruistic private companies could deposit cell lines for broader use, as they likely have extras that aren't intended to be used in manufacturing. But generally this isn't expected of them. Simply creating & increasing access to cell lines is typically driven by public funds.
So this is why we advocate for more public $. Because academic research is being slowed & existing funds can't keep up w/ the pace of the accelerating industry. A lot of smart minds are being kept from working on solving problems as a result.
A similar argument can be made for cell culture media. It would be great to see companies license the serum-free formulations they develop, but formulations can and often are developed first in academia. But not without funds.
IMO we need strong private & public sector research for CM to thrive, but thus far the public component has been lacking. Private industry shouldn't be expected to fully prop up this deficit

A lot more can be said on this topic, some points covered here:

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