USC Stem Cell Study Sheds New Light on Cell Mechanism
Research from the University of Southern California has discovered a new mechanism to allow embryonic stem cells to divide indefinitely and remain undifferentiated.
New Insights into Cellular Reprogramming Revealed by Genomic Analysis
Recently, thanks to the application of powerful new integrative genomic tools, a cross-disciplinary research team from Harvard University, Whitehead Institute, and the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard has uncovered significant new information about the molecular changes that underlie the direct reprogramming process.
Origin of Cells for Connective Tissues of Skull and Face Challenged
With improved resolution, tissue-specific molecular markers and precise timing, University of Oregon biologist James A. Weston and colleagues have possibly overturned a long-standing assumption about the origin of embryonic cells that give rise to connective and skeletal tissues that form the base of the skull and facial structures in back-boned creatures from fish to humans.
Life, But Not As We Know It?
Dr Cameron Alexander and PhD student George Pasparakis in the University’s School of Pharmacy have used polymers – long-chain molecules – to construct capsule-like structures that have properties mimicking the surfaces of a real cell.
Cell ‘Organs’ Get Plastic Upgrades
Human cells could have their metabolisms upgraded without altering their genes by inserting tiny plastic packages of enzymes, Swiss researchers have shown. They hope the technique could allow advanced cancer therapies, or even upgrade a person’s metabolism.
Artificial Virus for ‘Tailor-Made Gene Therapy’
An artificial self-assembling virus capable of serving as a drug delivery system has been created by researchers in Korea, according to a publication in Angewandte Chemie.
Covalon Achieves Another Important Preclinical Milestone in its EPAS-1 Research Project for Treating Congestive Heart Failure and Tissue Regeneration
The EPAS-1 research project is expected to allow Covalon to produce “universal donor” mesenchymal stem cells that can be used by all individuals for use in myocardial preservation by therapeutic cell transplantation following loss of blood flow due to coronary vessel occlusion. The use of a “universal donor” will allow for simplification and standardization of procedures related to stem cell therapy including cardiovascular disease and generally in regenerative medicine.
Pluristem Demonstrates the Potential of Its PLX Cells to Treat Crohn’s Disease and Ulcerative Colitis
Pluristem Therapeutics Inc. recently announced that the Company’s PLacental eXpanded cells have demonstrated in vivo efficacy in the treatment of Crohn’s Disease and Ulcerative Colitis, collectively termed Inflammatory Bowel Disease.
BrainStorm Cell Therapeutics NTF Cells Shows Significant Advantage in Pre-Clinical Study for Parkinson’s Disease
BrainStorm Cell Therapeutics Inc. announced recently that in a pre-clinical study that was conducted with Tel Aviv University between February and May 2008, signs of impaired motor behavior in a rat model of Parkinson’s improved following transplantation of BrainStorm’s unique Neurotrophic Factor Cells.
Vancouver Researchers Pioneer Safe Pathway to Slow ALS Using Stem Cells
A unique pilot study has established a safe pathway for using bone-marrow stem cells to slow down and potentially treat Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, a fatal neurodegenerative disease without cure.
AMT Announces Positive Interim Clinical Data on its Lead Product AMT-011
Amsterdam Molecular Therapeutics recently announced that positive interim data from its pivotal clinical trial with AMT’s lead product Glybera(R) (AMT-011) were presented by the Principal Investigator, professor Daniel Gaudet, at the American Society of Gene Therapy Annual Meeting in Boston on May 29th. These data confirm the outcome of a previous study conducted in The Netherlands, demonstrating safety and efficacy of Glybera(R) for lipoprotein-lipase deficiency, a disease also known as Hyperlipoproteinemia type I.
ViroPharma Announces Completion of Enrollment in Phase 3 Study of Maribavir in Stem Cell Transplant Patients
ViroPharma Incorporated recently announced that it completed enrollment in its pivotal Phase 3 study of maribavir in stem cell transplant patients. This international Phase 3 study is evaluating the efficacy, safety and tolerability of prophylactic use of maribavir administered orally for up to 12 weeks for the prevention of cytomegalovirus disease in recipients of allogeneic stem cell transplants.
StemCells Confirms Previously Reported Batten Trial Death Was Due to Natural Progression of Disease
StemCells, Inc. recently provided additional information about the patient in the Company’s Phase I clinical trial of HuCNS-SC (R) cells (purified human neural stem cells) whose death was previously reported in January 2008. Based on autopsy results and medical records, the principal investigators for the trial, the Company’s medical experts and an independent Data Safety Monitoring Committee have all confirmed their preliminary judgment that the death was due to the natural progression of the disease.
Bioreactors and Surfaced-Modified 3D-Scaffolds for Stem Cell Research
In this interview, Karl-Freidrich Weibezahn discusses the latest generation of 3D-scaffolds as opposed to previously used monolayer cultures.
RNAi Researchers Galvanized by Advances
If there is one thing that researchers agree on, it’s that now is a good time to be working with RNA interference. RNAi is a natural cellular mechanism that regulates gene expression at the stage of translation by degrading the mRNA or blocking translation. It can also alter the level of transcription of specific genes
ABSTRACTS, REVIEWS AND SPECIAL REPORTS
Efficient Differentiation of Functional Hepatocytes from Human Embryonic Stem Cells
Differentiation of human embryonic stem cells to specific functional cell types can be achieved using methods that mimic in vivo embryonic developmental programs. The researchers report here a robust and highly efficient process for the generation of high-purity (70%) hepatocyte cultures from hESCs that parallels sequential hepatic development in vivo.
Hoxb1 Controls Cell Fate Specification and Proliferative Capacity of Neural Stem and Progenitor Cells
In this study, researchers find that timely induction of a Hoxb1 transgene in ESC-derived neural stem cells (NSCs) resulted in the specification of NSCs towards a hindbrain specific identity through the activation of a rhombomere 4-specific genetic program and the repression of anterior neural identity.
Hedgehog Serves as a Mitogen and Survival Factor During Embryonic Stem Cell Neurogenesis
Within the vertebrate central nervous system, Sonic Hedgehog can act as a morphogen or mitogen that regulates the patterning, proliferation, and survival of neural stem cells. The researchers show here that ESC differentiation in adherent culture follows the ESC-> primitive ectoderm -> neurectoderm transitions observed in vivo. Selective death of the Sox1-GFP-negative cells contributes to the enrichment of Sox1-GFP-positive NSCs.
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