Stem Cell Core

The Stem Cell Core Facility is a multi-center facility at Columbia University Irving Medical Center, created to help users take advantage of up-to-date resources in the stem cell field in a timely and cost-efficient way.

The Columbia Stem Cell Core Facility has two primary aims:

  1. To give our users access to quality-controlled pluripotent stem cells and stem cell-derivatives prepared using standardized approaches
  2. To offer genome editing services for the generation of custom-designed cell lines

The Stem Cell Core Facility also offers training sessions and informal interactions between scientists from multiple laboratories working on different stem cell models. Some reagents commonly used in stem cell labs, as mTeSR1 media and irradiated mouse embryonic fibroblasts, are also available at discounted prices for our users.

We are connected to Stem Cell COREdinates, a consortium of pluripotent stem cell-focused core facilities, which allows us to take advantage of the sharing of the most updated and efficient protocols, expertise, and reagents.

Cell Production

The Cell Production section of the Stem Cell Core Facility offers to its users maintenance and supply of human ESC/iPSC; derivation and characterization of hiPSC from fibroblasts or blood; and differentiation of human pluripotent stem cells into functional, mature, highly purified progeniesto (including neuronal, cardiac, retinal pigment epithelium, hepatic, pancreatic & skeletal muscle.)  

Gene Editing

The Gene Editing section of the Stem Cell Core Facility provides various services, including insertion of transgene and targeted single nucleotide modifications.

Stem Cell Equipment

Some equipment, including the picking hood, the Lonza Nucleofector 4D and the Life Technologies Neon, is available to users for rental. Please contact us for more information.


LouJin Song, Ramsey Bekdash, Kumi Morikawa, Jose R. Quejada, Alison D. Klein, Danielle Aina-Badejo, Kazushige Yoshida, Hannah E. Yamamoto, Amy Chalan, Risako Yang, Achchhe Patel, Dario Sirabella, Teresa M. Lee, Leroy C. Joseph, Fuun Kawano, Junco S. Warren, Rajesh K. Soni, John P. Morrow & Masayuki Yazawa. Sigma non-opioid receptor 1 is a potential therapeutic target for long QT syndrome. Nat Cardiovasc Res 1, 142–156 (2022).

Iannello G, Patel A, Sirabella D, Corneo B, Thaker V. Derivation and characterization of the induced pluripotent stem cell line CUIMCi004-A from a patient with a novel frameshift variant in exon 18a of OCRL. Stem Cell Res. 2021 Dec 23;59:102635

de Jong J., Llapashtica C., Genestine M., Strauss K., Provenzano F., Sun Y., Zhu H., Cortese G., F Brundu F., Brigatti K., Corneo B, Migliori B., Tomer R., Kushner S., Kellendonk C., Javitch J., Xu B., and Markx S. Cortical Overgrowth in a Preclinical Forebrain Organoid Model of CNTNAP2-Associated Autism Spectrum Disorder. Nature Communications, 2021 Sep 1;12(1):4087. 

Iannello G, Patel A, Sirabella D, Corneo B, Thaker V. Generation of the iPSC line CUIMCi003-A derived from a patient with severe early onset obesity. Stem Cell Res. 2021 Jul;54:102432.

Mathieu C, Bovier F, Ferren M, Nicole Lieberman N, Predella C, Lalande A, Peddu V, Lin M, Addetia A, Patel A, Outlaw V, Corneo B, Dorrello N, Briese T, Hardie D, Horvat B, Moscona A, Greninger A, and Porotto M. Molecular features of the measles virus viral fusion complex that favor infection and spread in the brain. mBio (Jun 2021:e0079921). PMID: 34061592 

Avior, Y., Ron, S., Kroitorou, D., Albeldas, C., Lerner, V., Corneo, B., Nitzan, E., Laifenfeld, D., Cohen Solal, T. Depression patient-derived cortical neurons reveal potential biomarkers for antidepressant response. Transl Psychiatry 11, 201 (2021).

Patel A, Diaz AG, Moore JC, Sirabella D & Corneo B. Establishment and characterization of two iPSC lines derived from healthy controls.  Stem Cell Research, 2020 Jul 25;47:101926.

Garcia-Diaz A., Efe G., Kabra K,  Patel A, Lowry E.R., Shneider N., Corneo B., Wichterle H. Standardized reporter systems for purification and imaging of human pluripotent stem cell-derived motor neurons and other cholinergic cells.  Neuroscience, 2020 Jun 30:S0306-4522(20)30404-8.

Liu J, Taylor R.L., Baines R.A., Swanton L., Freeman S., Corneo B., Patel A., Marmorstein A., Knudsen T., Black G.C., Manson F. Small molecules restore bestrophin-1 expression and function of both dominant and recessive bestrophinopathies in patient-derived RPE.  IOVS. 2020 May 11;61(5):28. PMID: 32421148

Riera M, Patel A, Burés-Jelstrup A, Corcostegui B, Chang S, Pomares E, Corneo B, Sparrow JR. Generation of two iPS cell lines (FRIMOi003-A and FRIMOi004-A) derived from Stargardt patients carrying ABCA4 compound heterozygous mutations.  Stem Cell Res. 2019 Apr;36:101389. PMID: 30798147

Riera M, Patel A, Corcostegui B, Chang S, Sparrow JR, Pomares E, Corneo B. Establishment and characterization of an iPSC line (FRIMOi001-A) derived from a retinitis pigmentosa patient carrying PDE6A mutations.  Stem Cell Res. 2019; 35:101385. PMID: 30685614

Riera M, Patel A, Corcostegui B, Chang S, Corneo B, Sparrow JR, Pomares E. Generation of an induced pluripotent stem cell line (FRIMOi002-A) from a retinitis pigmentosa patient carrying compound heterozygous mutations in USH2A gene.  Stem Cell Res. 2019; 35:101386. PMID: 30685615

Baulier E, Garcia Diaz A, Corneo B, Farber DB. Generation of a human Ocular Albinism type 1 iPSC line, SEIi001-A, with a mutation in GPR143.  Stem Cell Res. 2018; 33:274-277. PMID: 30513407

Di Baldassarre A, D'Amico MA, Izzicupo P, Gaggi G, Guarnieri S, Mariggiò MA, Antonucci I, Corneo B, Sirabella D, Stuppia L, Ghinassi B. Cardiomyocytes Derived from Human CardiopoieticAmniotic Fluids.  Scientific reports. 2018 Aug 13;8(1):12028. doi: 10.1038/s41598-018-30537-z. PMID: 30104705. PMCID: PMC6089907.



  • Barbara Corneo, PhD

    • Associate Professor of Rehabilitation and Regenerative Medicine at CUMC; Director, Columbia Stem Cell Core Facility


Stem Cell Core
630 West 168th Street
Vagelos Physicians & Surgeons Building, Room 11518
New York, NY 10032
United States
  • Barbara Corneo, PhD

    • Associate Professor of Rehabilitation and Regenerative Medicine at CUMC; Director, Columbia Stem Cell Core Facility

    Barbara manages the daily activity of Columbia's Stem Cell Core Facility, bringing her knowledge of stem cell research and enthusiasm for collaborating and teaching to the Columbia stem cell community as well as external users. Barbara grew up in Italy and earned a PhD in Immunology in Paris, France, working on severe combined immunodeficiency and V(D)J recombination. She then moved to the United States where she continued working on the effects that mutations in the Rag1 & 2 genes cause on the immune system. Barbara then joined Dr. Gordon Keller's lab at Mount Sinai, where she learned the basis of hESC biology and worked on endoderm differentiation and specification toward hepatic and pancreatic progenitors. She then joined the Neural Stem Cell Institute, directed by Dr. Sally Temple, to learn more about the nervous system. She worked on iPSC derivation from human ocular tissues and differentiation of hESC and hiPSC into retinal pigment epithelium (RPE). Barbara now directs the Stem Cell Core Facility, to provide support and to offer her expertise and help to any user interested in learning more about adult stem cells, embryonic stem cells, induced pluripotent stem cells, and their differentiated progenies.

  • Dario Sirabella, PhD

    • Associate Research Scientist

    Dario has a longstanding experience with stem cells. During his PhD at the University of Rome, Italy, he extensively studied skeletal muscle-derived stem cells and fetal vessel-associated stem cells, with particular focus on multipotency and differentiation into multiple mesodermal cell types. During his postdoctoral work at Mount Sinai School of Medicine, NY, he investigated specific molecular mechanisms involved in the signaling cascade that controls myogenic differentiation. Later, he became interested in pluripotency and started working on reprogramming skeletal muscle stem cells and in their transdifferentiation into cardiac cells.

    Dario joined the Columbia's Stem Cell Core Facility in 2012 as head of the cardiac section, a key resource for providing standardized preparations of human pluripotent stem cells-derived cardiac lineages. He is now also responsible of training, reprogramming and on the differentiation of hiPSC/hESC into motor neurons and skeletal muscle.

  • Achchhe Patel, PhD

    • Associate Research Scientist

    Achchhe received his PhD from the University of Delhi, India. He worked as a postdoctoral researcher at Wake Forest University School of Medicine, NC, to understand host-pathogen interactions of the intracellular parasite Chlamydia trachomatis. He entered the field of stem cell research by joining the laboratory of Dr. Ihor Lemischka at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, New York, and was involved in the identification of gene networks in insulin resistance using patient-derived iPSCs. He worked in collaboration with Dr. Sunita D'Souza (now Director of the Center for Modeling Pediatric Diseases at St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital) in the Mount Sinai Stem Cell Core Facility, where he was trained in the generation of iPSCs and development of protocols for differentiation and characterization of skeletal muscle cells and adipocytes. Achchhe joined the Columbia's Stem Cell Core Facility in the summer of 2016.  He is in charge of diverse services, including training, reprogramming and differentiation of motor neurons, cortical neurons and brain organoids, hepatocytes, pancreatic progenitors, and skeletal muscle from hPSC. More recently, Achchhe became the head of the stem cell engineering section of the Stem Cell Core Facility.



  • Grazia Iannello, PhD

    • Associate Research Scientist

    Grazia is the newest (and youngest!) member of the CSCI Stem Cell Core.

    She received her PhD in Biomarkers of Chronic and Complex Diseases at the University of Magna Graecia, Catanzaro (Italy) where she focused on identifying new pathogenic variants and genes of Parkinsonism. She approached for the first time the stem cell field at the Luxembourg Center for System Biology (Luxembourg), where she pursued her interest in understanding the molecular mechanism of Parkinson’s disease using patient-derived iPSCs and dopaminergic neurons. She then moved to Paris, France at the Institut du Cerveau et de la Moelle Épinière, directed by Dr. Alexis Brice, to expand her background in genetics by using microarray data analysis to investigate the role of genetic modifiers in Parkinson’s disease.

    Grazia joined Columbia University, NY in October 2019 as a postdoctoral research scientist in Dr. Thaker lab, investigating new genes and/or variants causing extreme obesity using NGS and characterizing their function in patient-specific iPSC. During that period, Grazia was trained in iPSC derivation, neuronal differentiation, and gene-editing at the CSCI Stem Cell Core, which she officially joined in October 2021. She is responsible of training, reprogramming, differentiation of hiPSC into cortical neurons and CRISPR/Cas9 engineering.