Self-Assembled Materials From Mini Stem Cell Lab
Imagine having one polymer and one small molecule that instantly assemble into a flexible but strong sac in which you can grow human stem cells, creating a sort of miniature laboratory. And that sac, if used for cell therapy, could cloak the stem cells from the human body’s immune system and biodegrade upon arriving at its destination, releasing the stem cells to do their work.
Identifying the Genes that Put the “Stem” in Cell
A team led by Howard Hughes Medical Institute researchers has identified a network of hundreds of genes that keep embryonic stem cells in their characteristic malleable state, able to develop into any cell type when the time comes.
Protein Protects Embryonic Stem Cells’ Versatility and Self-Renewal
A protein known as REST blocks the expression of a microRNA that prevents embryonic stem cells from reproducing themselves and causes them to differentiate into specific cell types, scientists at The University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center report in the journal Nature.
UCLA Stem Cell Researchers Use High Resolution Technology to Examine the Genome of Human Embryonic Cells
Stem cell researchers from UCLA used a high resolution technique to examine the genome, or total DNA content, of a pair of human embryonic stem cell lines and found that while both lines could form neurons, the lines had differences in the numbers of certain genes that could control such things as individual traits and disease susceptibility.
Umbilical Cord Blood Cell Therapy Reduces Pathology in Animal Model of Alzheimer’s Disease
Targeted immune suppression using human umbilical cord blood cells may improve the pathology associated with Alzheimer’s disease, a new study in a mouse model of this currently untreatable neurodegenerative condition reports.
Gene Silencing Therapies Could Have Harmful Side Effects, Research Suggests
A dramatic new study published in the most recent issue of Nature questions some of the mechanisms underlying a new class of drugs based on Nobel Prize-winning work designed to fight diseases ranging from macular degeneration to diabetes.
Deadly Genetic Disease Prevented Before Birth in Zebrafish
By injecting a customized “genetic patch” into early stage fish embryos, researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis were able to correct a genetic mutation so the embryos developed normally.
Anticancer siRNA Therapy Advances, Thanks to Nanoparticles
Small pieces of nucleic acid, known as short interfering RNAs, can turn off the production of specific proteins, a property that makes them one of the more promising new classes of anticancer drugs in development. Indeed, at least two siRNA-based anticancer therapies, both delivered to tumors in nanoparticles, have begun human clinical trials.
Oxford Biomedica Report Encouraging New Phase II Trial Results with TROVAX(R) in Prostate Cancer
Oxford BioMedica has announced encouraging new data from its first Phase II trial of TroVax in prostate cancer.
Neurologix Receives FDA Clearance to Initiate Phase 2 Trial in Parkinson’s Disease Subjects
Neurologix, Inc., announced recently that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has allowed the company to proceed with its planned Phase 2 clinical trial in subjects with advanced Parkinson’s disease.
ABSTRACTS, REVIEWS AND SPECIAL REPORTS
High Incidence of Leukemia in Large Animals After Stem Cell Gene Therapy with a HOXB4-Expressing Retroviral Vector
Retroviral vector–mediated HSC gene therapy has been used to treat individuals with a number of life-threatening diseases. However, some patients with SCID-X1 developed retroviral vector–mediated leukemia after treatment. Our data thus suggest the continued need for caution in genetic manipulation of repopulating cells, particularly when the transgene might impart an intrinsic growth advantage.
The Wanderings of Hematopoietic Stem Cells
The Rho GTPase family member Rac1 functions in the migration of hematopoietic stem/progenitor cells in the embryo and is required for the emergence of intraembryonic hematopoiesis.