Volume 10.47 | Nov 30

Cell Therapy News 10.47, November 30, 2009
     In this issue: Science | Policy | Business | NIH | CBER | Regulatory
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Top Stories

New Research Suggests Stem Cells from Amniotic Fluid May be More Versatile than Originally Thought: For the first time, scientists have demonstrated that stem cells found in amniotic fluid meet an important test of potential to become specialized cell types. [Wake Forest Institute for Regenerative Medicine, Winston-Salem]
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Science

Bone Repair ‘Breakthrough’ at Hadassah
A team has managed for the first time in the world to separate platelets and adult stem cells from the blood and bone marrow of patients with fractures and inject them – causing the bones to meld in a quarter to third of the time it usually takes to repair bones, and repairing some breaks that without the therapy would fail to heal at all. [Jerusalem’s Hadassah University Medical Center, Jerusalem]
Article

Adult Cell Self-Renewal Without Stem Cells?
A French team has shown that self-renewal is possible without recourse to stem cell intermediates by achieving the ex vivo regeneration of macrophages, specialized cells in the immune system, over several months. [Universite Aix-Marseille 2, Marseille]
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Edmonton Doctor’s Stem Cell Research Gives Hope for Premature Babies
An Edmonton doctor has began injecting stem cells, derived from bone marrow, into the diseased lungs of baby rats and found that the cells prevented further damage. [Royal Alexandra Hospital, Edmonton]
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Emory Wins 1st Stem Cell Trial for ALS
Emory University will be the site of the first U.S. clinical trial that focuses on using stem cells to slow the progression of adults with Lou Gehrig’s disease. [Neuralstem Inc., Rockville]
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Mercy Gilbert Scores State First with Stem Cell Treatment
Doctors have begun treating first-time heart attack patients using adult stem cells, which they hope will rebuild damaged heart tissue and reduce the risk of heart failure. [Mercy Gilbert Medical Center, Gilbert]
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Researchers Use Gene Therapy to Slow Brain Disease
The brain disease X-linked adrenoleukodystrophy can be treated with a combination of gene therapy and blood stem cell therapy, new EU-funded research shows. [Universite Paris Descartes, Paris]
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PUBLICATIONS, REVIEWS AND SPECIAL REPORTS

Designing Materials to Direct Stem Cell Fate
Biomaterials are rapidly being developed to display and deliver stem cell-regulatory signals in a precise and near-physiological fashion, and serve as powerful artificial microenvironments in which to study and instruct stem-cell fate both in culture and in vivo. [Nature]
Article

Human Embryonic Stem Cell Derivatives for Full Reconstruction of the Pluristratified Epidermis: a Preclinical Study
To assess whether the keratinocyte progeny of human embryonic stem cells could be used to form a temporary skin substitute for use in patients awaiting autologous grafts, the researchers investigated the cells’ capability of constructing a pluristratified epidermis. [J Lancet]
Article

Antibody Response to Polysaccharide Conjugate Vaccines after Nonmyeloablative Allogeneic Stem Cell Transplantation
In this study, the reconstitution of humoral immunity after allo-RIST is determined by measuring the vaccination-induced antibody response against Streptococcus pneumoniae, Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib), and tetanus toxoid (TT) 1 year posttransplantation. [Biol Blood Marrow Transplant]
Article

Policy

Nebraska Regents Reject Stem Cell Restrictions
The University of Nebraska’s Board of Regents took a stand on a controversial issue on Friday, voting down a resolution that would have restricted the amount of stem cell research done in university facilities.
Article

Business

Intercytex Wind-Down Continues with Sale of Stem Cell Therapies Assets to Pfizer for $750,000
Intercytex Group plc recently announced that it has completed the sale of certain assets related to stem cell therapies from its wholly owned subsidiary Axordia Limited to Pfizer Limited for a total cash consideration of $750,000.
Article

ReNeuron Awarded Two Grants Under Regenerative Medicine Funding Programme Established by UK Government
ReNeuron Group plc announces that it has been awarded two grants under the Government-backed Technology Strategy Board’s Regenerative Medicine Program.
Article

Kyoto University Granted Patents for Stem Cell Production, Conversion Techniques
A patent for a set of techniques to convert artificially produced stem cells into nerve, muscle and other cell types has been granted to Kyoto University by the Japan Patent Office.
Article

NIH

NIH Hopes Stimulus Isn’t a Roller-Coaster Ride
The decision by the National Institutes of Health to use the stimulus money not only to fund more projects already in the pipeline but also to run a major new competition, the Challenge Grants, has kept afloat the labs of thousands of investigators whose proposals had just missed the regular funding cutoff, as well as supporting novel research ideas, new investigators, summer students, and large technology projects.
Article

NIH Awards $20.4 Million for Biomedical Research in Rhode Island and South Carolina
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Now Available: Restructured Application Forms and Instructions for Application Due Dates on or after January 25, 2010 (NOT-OD-10-016)
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Update on the Requirement for Instruction in the Responsible Conduct of Research (NOT-OD-10-019)
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CBER

December 15, 2009: Vaccines & Related Biological Products Advisory Committee Meeting Announcement
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Regulatory

MEDICINES AND HEALTHCARE PRODUCTS REGULATORY AGENCY (United Kingdom)

New Appointments to the Commission on Human Medicines
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