Volume 10.13 | Apr 13

Cell Therapy News 10.13, April 13, 2009
     In this issue: Science | Policy | Business | NIH | CBER | Regulatory
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Top Stories

Stem Cell Therapy Makes Cloudy Corneas Clear, According to Pitt Researchers: Stem cells collected from human corneas restore transparency and don’t trigger a rejection response when injected into eyes that are scarred and hazy, according to experiments conducted in mice.


Researchers Develop New Way to See Single RNA Molecules Inside Living Cells
Biomedical engineers have developed a new type of probe that allows them to visualize single ribonucleic acid (RNA) molecules within live cells more easily than existing methods.

Stem Cell Therapy Grows New Blood Vessels
Canadian researchers have identified how to use selected stem cells from bone marrow to grow new blood vessels to treat diseases such as peripheral artery disease.

New Technique Invented to Reveal Pancreatic Stem Cells
In a recent study, researchers have shown with a novel technique that a particular subset of the pancreatic cells, the so-called acinar cells, are indeed stem cells.

Stem Cell Breakthrough May Lead to MS Treatments
U.S. scientists say they’ve coaxed human embryonic stem cells into generating cells that might someday be used to repair nerves damaged by multiple sclerosis.

Magnetized Stem Cell Shot Could Repair Bones and Joints
Keele scientists are testing injectable stem cells that they can control with a magnet, which would mean that doctors may soon be able to repair damaged bones and joints anywhere in the body with a simple injection.

University of Florida Researcher Identifies Stem Cell Marker for Possible ‘Root’ of Colon Cancer
To truly kill colon cancer and eliminate the risk of recurrence, it is important to kill the “root” of the disease, according to a University of Florida College of Medicine surgeon.

Scientists Use Advanced Genomic Technology to Uncover Profiles of Gene Activity from Single Cells
Applied Biosystems recently announced that researchers have discovered comprehensive profiles of gene activity from single cells using its SOLiD System.

Scientists Identify Key Gene that Protects Against Leukemia
Researchers have identified a gene that controls the rapid production and differentiation of the stem cells that produce all blood cell types.

Gene Therapy Appears Safe to Regenerate Gum Tissue
Scientists at the University of Michigan have developed a method of gene delivery that appears safe for regenerating tooth-supporting gum tissue.

UCSF Team Closer to Creating Safe Embryonic-like Stem Cells
A team of UCSF researchers has for the first time used tiny molecules called microRNAs to help turn adult mouse cells back to their embryonic state.

Molecule Prompts Damaged Heart Cells to Repair Themselves After a Heart Attack
A protein that the heart produces during its early development reactivates the embryonic coronary developmental program and initiates migration of heart cells and blood vessel growth after a heart attack.

Stem Cells Spur New Eggs in Ovaries of Adult Mice
Researchers in China have demonstrated that female ovaries may be capable of producing new eggs in adulthood and subsequently producing offspring.

ReNeuron Announces Positive Pre-clinical Data with Lead Stem Cell Line in Peripheral Arterial Disease
ReNeuron Group plc recently announced positive pre-clinical efficacy data with its lead CTX stem cell line in a model of peripheral arterial disease.

Alnylam Initiates Phase I Clinical Study of ALN-VSP in Patients with Liver Cancer
Alnylam Pharmaceuticals, Inc. recently announced that it has initiated a Phase I human clinical trial of ALN-VSP, an RNAi therapeutic, to evaluate its safety in patients with advanced liver cancers.

Living Cell Technologies Gains Additional Benefit From DIABECELL with Modified Diabetes Clinical Trial Protocol
Living Cell Technologies Limited reports insulin independence in a patient with insulin dependent type 1 diabetes who received DIABECELL as part of an on-going Phase I/IIa clinical trial.

First Patient Treated in Osiris Phase II Stem Cell Trial for Heart Attacks
Osiris Therapeutics, Inc. recently announced the treatment of the first patient in a Phase II clinical trial evaluating Prochymal for the treatment of heart attacks.


Facilitated Maturation of Ca2+ Handling Properties of Human Embryonic Stem Cell-Derived Cardiomyocytes by Calsequestrin Expression
Here the researchers hypothesized that gene transfer of calsequestrin in hESC-CMs suffices to induce functional improvement of sarcoplasmic reticulum.

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Washington’s $350M Life Sciences Discovery Fund, Faces Possible Shutdown
One of the centerpieces of Governor Chris Gregoire’s economic development strategy, the state’s 10-year, $350 million Life Sciences Discovery Fund, would either be gutted or essentially shut down by dueling budget bills under consideration by state lawmakers.


First Stem Cell Bank to Open in Melbourne
Australia’s first dedicated stem cell bank is set to open in Melbourne in July and could be providing stem cells for medical and research purposes by the end of the year.

China Looks to Expand Stake in Stem Cell Technology
China will build Asia’s biggest base to develop uses for stem cell medical technology, which the health minister described as having huge potential for development.

Scientist Plans $245M Research Institute on Health Care
Plans have begun for a $245 million research institute focused on personalized medicine in Northern Virginia that would employ up to 500 top-rated scientists recruited from the far corners of the world.

Madison Stem Cell Company Gets State Loan
Cell Line Genetics LLC has received a $250,000 loan from the state of Wisconsin to develop two new technologies for stem cell research.

University of California Merced Professor Awarded Stem Cell Grant
UC Merced said Professor Michael Cleary received a $483,000 grant from the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine to develop a tool that could allow previously impossible experiments to be performed in stem cell research.

Yale Gets Stem Cell Grants
A dozen Yale researchers have received $3.9 million in grant funding for research on human embryonic stem cells.


NIH Director Welcomes Three New Members to the Advisory Committee to the Director

The NIH Stimulus – The Recovery Act and Biomedical Research

Notice Regarding Competitive Revisions Using Recovery Act Funds for Applications Still Requiring Paper Submission (NOT-OD-09-083)


Current Licensed Establishments and Products Listed by Product



Biological Product Shortages – Immune Globulin (Human) [GamaSTAN S/D], Talecris Biotherapeutics, Inc.

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