Available for Licensing: A Human Progenitor Mast Cell Line for Allergic and Fibrotic Research and Therapeutic Screening

The HPS-1 proMastocyte (HPM) cell line, containing an HPS-1 mutation, is the first mast cell line shown to constitutively release fibrotic proteins. This cell line serves as a model to study early mast cell development or fibrosis, or as a tool to screen therapeutic compounds for pulmonary fibrosis.

Hermansky-Pudlak Syndrome type-1 (HPS-1) is a rare genetic disorder that affects around 1 in 500,000 people worldwide and 1 in 1,800 Puerto Ricans. Patients with HPS-1 display oculocutaneous albinism, bleeding due to platelet abnormality, and pulmonary fibrosis. Those that develop pulmonary fibrosis often succumb and live no more than a decade after early onset of breathing problems.

Scientists at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) have developed the HPS-1 proMastocyte (HPM) cell line, containing an HPS-1 mutation. This cell line resembles a progenitor mast cell with reduced granule formation, significant chemotactic ability, and is the first mast cell line shown to constitutively release cytokines, chemokines, and most importantly fibrotic proteins. This cell line serves as a model to study granule formation, early mast cell development, chemotaxis and mechanisms controlling synthesis of molecules contributing to fibrosis, as well as a screening tool to identify target compounds for the treatment of pulmonary fibrosis.

The cell line is available as live cells approximately 3-4 million cells per sample in a T25 Flask.


First progenitor mast cell line known to produce fibrotic elements

Progenitor mast cell line with rapid growth, no cytokine stimulation needed. Cell doubling time of 2–3 days

Inventors: Arnold S. Kirshenbaum and Dean D. Metcalfe, both of NIAID


Kirshenbaum AS et al. Immunophenotypic and Ultrastructural Analysis of Mast Cells in Hermansky-Pudlak Syndrome Type-1: A Possible Connection to Pulmonary Fibrosis. PLoS One. 2016, Jul 26;11(7): e0159177, PMID 27459687

HHS Reference No. E-270-2016/0, available as a Biological Material

Licensing Contact: Dr. Benjamin Hurley, (240) 669-5092, benjamin.hurley@nih.gov .

NIAID Technology Transfer and Intellectual Property Office

NIAID’s technology transfer office, TTIPO, is a one-stop resource for organizations interested in partnering with NIAID to access, develop, and manage the translation of research discoveries into medically beneficial products. TTIPO seeks to expand NIAID’s innovation pipeline with existing and new partners in areas such as newly emerging and re-emerging infectious diseases (e.g., dengue, Zika, Ebola, influenza, methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus and HIV/AIDS), biodefense (e.g., smallpox and anthrax), and immune-mediated diseases (e.g., asthma and allergy).

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