Volume 13.26 | Jul 9

Issue 13.26 July 9, 2012
Cell Therapy News - Your Industry in an Instant
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Publications | Reviews | Science | Policy | Business | NIH | CBER | Regulatory | Events | Jobs

TOP STORY
Printing 3D Blood Vessel Networks Out of Sugar
Bioengineers have used a 3D printer called a RepRap to make templates of blood vessel networks out of sugar. Once the networks are encased in a block of cells, the sugar can be dissolved, leaving a functional vascular network behind. [Press release from the University of Pennsylvania discussing online prepublication in Nature Materials] Press Release | Abstract | Video

[Free Webinar] ALDH+ Cancer Precursor Cells in Drug Response Prediction - Watch Now.


PUBLICATIONS (Ranked by impact factor of the journal)

Derivation Conditions Impact X-Inactivation Status in Female Human Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells
Female human induced pluripotent stem cell (hiPSC) lines exhibit variability in X-inactivation status. The authors show here that X-inactivation status in female hiPSC lines depends on derivation conditions. [Cell Stem Cell] Abstract | Press Release

Targeted Gene Knockout by Direct Delivery of Zinc-Finger Nuclease Proteins
Scientists demonstrated the intrinsic cell-penetrating capabilities of the standard zinc-finger nuclease (ZFN) architecture and showed that direct delivery of ZFNs as proteins leads to efficient endogenous gene disruption in various mammalian cell types with minimal off-target effects. [Nat Methods] Abstract | Press Release

Topical Delivery of siRNA-Based Spherical Nucleic Acid Nanoparticle Conjugates for Gene Regulation
Researchers showed that spherical nucleic acid nanoparticle conjugates, gold cores surrounded by a dense shell of highly oriented, covalently immobilized siRNA, freely penetrate almost 100% of keratinocytes in vitro, mouse skin, and human epidermis within hours after application. [Proc Natl Acad Sci USA] Abstract | Press Release

Long-Term Remission of Diabetes in NOD Mice Is Induced by Nondepleting Anti-CD4 and Anti-CD8 Antibodies
Investigators showed that a short course of nondepleting antibodies specific for the CD4 and CD8 coreceptors rapidly reversed clinical disease in recent-onset diabetic NOD mice. Induction of remission involved selective T-cell purging of the pancreas and draining pancreatic lymph nodes and upregulation of transforming growth factor-β1 by pancreas-resident antigen-presenting cells. [Diabetes] Abstract | Press Release

Pharmacological Rescue of Mitochondrial Deficits in iPSC-Derived Neural Cells from Patients with Familial Parkinson’s Disease
Researchers analyzed neural cells generated from induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) derived from Parkinson’s disease patients and presymptomatic individuals carrying mutations in the PINK1 (PTEN-induced putative kinase 1) and LRRK2 (leucine-rich repeat kinase 2) genes, and compared them to those of healthy control subjects. [Sci Transl Med] Abstract | Press Release

Vasculogenic and Osteogenesis-Enhancing Potential of Human Umbilical Cord Blood Endothelial Colony-Forming Cells
Subcutaneous implantation of umbilical cord blood-derived endothelial colony-forming cells with human fetal-mesenchymal stem cells (hfMSC) in immunodeficient mice resulted in the formation of chimeric human vessels, with a 2.2 fold increase in host neovascularization compared to hfMSC-only implants. [Stem Cells] Abstract

Valproic Acid Confers Functional Pluripotency to Human Amniotic Fluid Stem Cells in a Transgene-Free Approach
Researchers show that c-KIT+ human first-trimester amniotic fluid stem cells can be fully reprogrammed to pluripotency without ectopic factors, by culture on Matrigel in human embryonic stem cell medium supplemented with the histone deacetylase inhibitor valproic acid. [Mol Ther] Full Article | Press Release

Harnessing Oncolytic Virus-Mediated Antitumor Immunity in an Infected Cell Vaccine
Researchers have developed a potent oncolytic vaccine platform, consisting of tumor cells infected with VSV-Δ51. They demonstrated that prophylactic immunization with this infected cell vaccine protected mice from subsequent tumor challenge, and expression of granulocyte-monocyte colony stimulating factor by the virus increased efficacy. [Mol Ther] Abstract

Intra-Arterial Bone Marrow Mononuclear Cells in Ischemic Stroke
Investigators aimed to assess the safety, feasibility, and biological effects of autologous bone marrow mononuclear cell transplantation in patients with stroke. [Stroke] Abstract

Anti-Inflammatory Mesenchymal Stem Cells (MSC2) Attenuate Symptoms of Painful Diabetic Peripheral Neuropathy
Researchers determined the effects of MSC2-based therapies on an inflammation-linked painful diabetic peripheral neuropathy mouse model. [Stem Cells Transl Med] Abstract | Press Release

PneumaCult™-ALI Medium for Bronchial Epithelial Cells: Watch the Video



SCIENCE NEWS

Prochymal Significantly Reduces Hypertrophy, Arrhythmia and Progression to Heart Failure in Patients Suffering a Heart Attack
Osiris Therapeutics, Inc. announced interim one-year results from its groundbreaking clinical trial evaluating Prochymal® (remestemcel-L) for the treatment of patients experiencing first-time acute myocardial infarction. The trial is the largest study of allogeneic or “off-the-shelf” stem cells ever conducted in heart attack patients. [Osiris Therapeutics, Inc.] Press Release

Dramatic Change in Patient with ALS and MG following Compassionate Use of BrainStorm’s Nurown™ Cell Therapy
A patient suffering from Myasthenia Gravis (MG) and recently diagnosed with ALS reported that he has experienced visible improvement in his speech, walking, balance, posture, muscle strength, appetite, digestion, and weight gain following compassionate treatment with BrainStorm’s NurOwn cell therapy. [BrainStorm Cell Therapeutics Inc.] Press Release

ACT Announces Second Patient with Stargardt’s Disease Treated in EU Clinical Trial
Advanced Cell Technology, Inc. (ACT) announced treatment of the second patient in its Phase I/II clinical trial for Stargardt’s macular dystrophy using retinal pigment epithelial cells derived from human embryonic stem cells. [Advanced Cell Technology, Inc.] Press Release

Learn more about the new smartphone app for human blood cell frequencies


 
POLICY

Britain Names Next Chief Science Adviser
Mark Walport will become the next government chief scientific adviser, it was announced. Walport will be the first biomedical scientist in 30 years to occupy the role, providing advice directly to Prime Minister David Cameron and the Cabinet. [Government Chief Scientific Adviser, Britain] Press Release

Turkey Cracks Down on Academic Freedom
Turkey is upping the pressure on scientists and students who question its policies, and international human-rights advocates are taking notice. [Turkish Government, Turkey] Press Release

Academics Protest Shrinking Funds in Pakistan
Pakistani universities are grappling with yet another financial crisis after parliament’s approval of a 2012-13 higher-education research budget of 15.8 billion rupees, 10 billion rupees less than the Higher Education Commission had asked for. [Higher Education Commission, Pakistan] Press Release

Medievalist to Head €2.4 Billion German Funding Agency
Germany’s main research funding body has chosen historian Peter Strohschneider as its president for the next three years. The 56-year-old professor of medieval studies will replace engineer Matthias Kleiner as head of the German Research Foundation, which has a €2.4 billion annual budget. [German Research Foundation, Germany] Press Release

Europe Inches Closer to a Unified Patent System
After more than 30 years of negotiations, the European Union has finally settled on a site for its first pan-European patent court. The deal clears one of the final political hurdles on the way to a one-stop shop for patents to be granted in a single place and be valid across 25 countries. [Unified Patent Court, European Union] Press Release

Stem Cell Society Singapore Symposium 2012: Stem Cell Based Therapy



BUSINESS

Medicyte Coordinates EU-Funded €4.2 Million Collaboration on Biomimetic Bioartificial Liver
Medicyte, The Electrospinning Company and the Universities of Manchester and Pisa launch a European wide unique project with the aim to design a biomimetic bioartificial liver. [Medicyte] Press Release

PDS Biotechnology Corporation Signs Worldwide Licensing Agreement with Merck KGaA for Versamune™
PDS Biotechnology Corporation announced that they have entered into an exclusive worldwide licensing agreement with Merck KGaA for use of PDS Biotechnology’s novel Versamune™ nanotechnology platform in two of Merck’s investigational antigen-specific cancer immunotherapies currently in pre-clinical development. [PR Newswire] Press Release

TMC Institutions Get $20 Million Renewal Grant for Translational Medicine Center
In 2006, three Texas Medical Center (TMC) institutions were among the first in the nation to receive a Clinical and Translational Science Award from the National Institutes of Health to accelerate the translation of laboratory discoveries into patient treatments. That grant has been renewed for another five years. [The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston] Press Release

Capricor Announces FDA Approval to Initiate ALLSTAR Trial of Allogeneic Stem Cell Therapy in Patients following Heart Attack
Capricor, Inc. announced that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved initiation of its Investigational New Drug application for the ALLSTAR study, which will use allogeneic cardiac-derived stem cells to treat patients following large myocardial infarctions. [Business Wire] Press Release

ACT Secures Approval to Proceed with Increased Retinal Pigment Epithelial Dosage for Patients in Clinical Trial for Dry AMD
Advanced Cell Technology, Inc. (ACT) announced that the Data and Safety Monitoring Board has authorized the company to move forward with enrollment and treatment of additional patients in its clinical trial for dry age-related macular degeneration (dry AMD). [Advanced Cell Technology, Inc.] Press Release

ImmunoCellular Provides Update on Phase II Clinical Trial of ICT-107 for Treatment of Glioblastoma
ImmunoCellular Therapeutics, Ltd. announced that it will expand its current Phase IIb trial of ICT-107 from 102 to up to 123 patients with glioblastoma multiforme and who are HLA-A1/A2 positive. [Business Wire] Press Release

Argos Therapeutics Receives FDA Approval of Special Protocol Assessment for AGS-003 Phase III Trial
Argos Therapeutics Inc. announced the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) has approved the Company´s revised Special Protocol Assessment for its Phase III clinical study of AGS-003 for the treatment of metastatic renal cell carcinoma. [Argos Therapeutics Inc.] Press Release

Medistem Receives Notice of Patent Allowance Covering Fat Stem Cell Therapy of Autoimmune Diseases
Medistem Inc. announced notice of allowance from the United States Patent and Trademark Office for a patent covering the use of fat stem cells, and cells associated with fat stem cells for treatment of diseases related to a dysfunctional immune system. [Marketwire] Press Release

ThermoGenesis Announces Sale of CryoSeal® Product Line to Asahi
ThermoGenesis Corp. said that Asahi Kasei Medical Co., Ltd. has exercised its option to purchase the Company’s CryoSeal Fibrin Sealant System wound care product line for $2 million in cash. [ThermoGenesis Corp.] Press Release

Lorus Therapeutics Announces Issuance of Canadian Patent for Novel Anticancer Therapy IL-17E
Lorus Therapeutics Inc. announced that the Canadian Intellectual Property Office has issued
Lorus’ patent for its cancer immunotherapy agent, IL-17E. [Lorus Therapeutics Inc.] Press Release

Massachusetts Stem-Cell Bank to Close
A Massachusetts stem-cell bank will close when it runs out of public funding this year. The University of Massachusetts Stem Cell Bank opened in 2008 with US$8.6 million in public funds in response to federal funding limitations on human embryonic stem-cell lines. [NatureNews] Press Release



NIH

NIH Will Adjust Translational Award Budgets but Keep Activities
Researchers are reacting with mixed feelings to the National Institutes of Health’s (NIH’s) plans for revamping its large clinical awards to fit the mission of its new translational science center. Press Release

Opportunity to Submit Proposals for the Therapeutics for Rare and Neglected Diseases (TRND) Program (NOT-TR-12-007)

Institutional Clinical and Translational Science Award (U54) (RFA-TR-12-006)

National Library of Medicine; Notice of Meeting (FR Doc No: 2012-16358)

Government-Owned Inventions; Availability for Licensing (FR Doc No: 2012-16500)

National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases; Notice of Closed Meeting (FR Doc No: 2012-16684)



REGULATORY

Food and Drug Administration (United States)

Assessment of the Program for Enhanced Review Transparency and Communication for New Molecular Entity New Drug Applications and Original Biologics License Applications in Prescription Drug User Fee Act V; Request for Comments (FR Doc No: 2012-16529)



EVENTS

NEW VII Brazilian Congress on Stem Cells and Cell Therapy
October 3-6, 2012
Sao Paulo, Brazil

NEW Cell Culture World Congress USA
November 12-13, 2012
Washington, United States

NEW 7th Fraunhofer Life Science Symposium Leipzig 2012
November 29-30, 2012
Leipzig, Germany

Visit our events page to see a complete list of events in the cell, gene and immunotherapy community.



JOB OPPORTUNITIES

Scientist – Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells (STEMCELL Technologies, Inc.)

Scientist – Epithelial Cell Research (STEMCELL Technologies, Inc.)

Scientist – hPSC Bioengineering (STEMCELL Technologies, Inc.)

Scientist – Mesenchymal Cell Research (STEMCELL Technologies, Inc.)

Research Associate – Chemistry (STEMCELL Technologies, Inc.)

Research Associate – Particle Chemistry (STEMCELL Technologies, Inc.)

Research Technologist – Contract Assay Services (STEMCELL Technologies, Inc.)

Research Technologist – Media Development (STEMCELL Technologies, Inc.)

iPSC Scientist Position – Laboratory of Translational Cell Biology (The Bassell Lab, Emory University)

Chief Scientific Officer (SynGen Inc.)

Postdoctoral Research Position for Minority Candidate (New York Obesity Research Center)

Clinical Coordinator (New York Obesity Nutrition Research Center)

Postdoctoral Research Position (University Lille 2 France)


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