Volume 7.31 | Aug 14

Volume 7.31, August 14, 2006
     In this issue: Science | Policy | Business | NIH | CBER | Regulatory
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Top Stories

With Few factors, Adult Cells Take on Character of Embryonic Stem Cells: With the introduction of just four factors, researchers have successfully induced differentiated cells taken from mouse embryos or adult mice to behave like embryonic stem cells.


Neural Stem Cells Derived from Human Embryonic Stem Cells Carry Abnormal Gene Expression
Neural stem cells grown from one of the federally approved human embryonic stem cell lines proved to be inferior to neural stem cells derived from fetal tissue donated for research.

Scientists Identify Gene Involved in Stem Cell Self-Renewal in Planaria
Researchers at the University of Illinois have discovered a molecule that gives planarian stem cells some of their regenerative power.

DNA of Human Embryonic Stem Cells is Chemically Modified in a Characteristic, Predictable Pattern
This pattern distinguishes human embryonic stem cells from normal adult cells and cell lines, including cancer cells.

New Microscope Sharpens Scientists’ Focus
A new light microscope so powerful that it allows scientists peering inside cells to discern the precise location of nearly each individual protein they are studying has been developed and successfully demonstrated by scientists.

Sticky DNA Helps Spot Leukemia
Researchers have developed a new technique to distinguish leukaemia cells from healthy ones.

MicroIslet Transplantation Studies in Diabetic Primates Successful at Six-Month Milestone
MicroIslet, Inc. announced that primate subjects in ongoing studies have continued to exhibit improved glycemic control over a six-month period by means of MicroIslet’s proprietary microencapsulated porcine islet transplantation treatment approach.

University of Pennsylvania Health System in Pursuit of Lung Cancer Vaccine
Researchers at the University of Pennsylvania have initiated a clinical trial directed at developing a better treatment for lung cancer.

The Next Frontier Of Sports Doping
Gene therapy could turn normal cells into nearly undetectable drug factories.

Couple Faces Stem Cell Fraud Charges
Interpol officials have tracked down a Llandudno, Cape Town, couple on the run from the FBI after being accused of a huge medicinal stem cell scam abroad.


Ethicists and Biologists Ponder the Price of Eggs
A Nature Special Report investigates the ethics and economics of donating eggs for stem-cell research. In this first part, Erika Check investigated whether paying donors would increase supply.

Health Effects of Egg Donation May Take Decades to Emerge
A Nature Special Report investigates the ethics and economics of donating eggs for stem-cell research. In this second part, Helen Pearson asks what is known about the long-term health risks faced by donors.


Stem Cell Conscience Vote in Australia ‘Possible’
Coalition MPs will debate the emotional issue of stem cell research at a special meeting within the next fortnight.

Missourians Will Vote on Stem Cell Initiative
A stem cell initiative in Missouri was certified for the November ballot and will ask voters whether to amend the state’s constitution to allow all federally approved stem cell research and treatment in the state.

British Embryo Decision Sparks Call for World Policy
Britain’s decision to allow couples to screen embryos for possible cancer genes has highlighted the vastly different practice in the US and revived calls for global agreement on the issue.


Medistem Files Patent Application for Stem Cell Therapy to Treat Erectile Dysfunction
The potential therapy is designed to reverse multiple causes of erectile dysfunction and targets the $3 billion global market for ED treatments.

Geron, University of Edinburgh Form Collaboration for Development of Three Cell Types Derived From Human Embryonic Stem Cells
The cell types are hepatocytes for the treatment of liver failure and osteoblasts and chondrocytes for the treatment of musculoskeletal disorders, including osteoarthritis, bone fractures and osteoporosis.

Neurologix Signs Strategic License Agreement for Component of Its Parkinson’s Gene Therapy Product
Under the terms of the agreement with a subsidiary of Diamyd Medical, Neurologix has been granted a license for the use of the glutamic acid decarboxylase (GAD) 65 gene, a component of the core technology “NLX-P101” gene therapy used in its recently completed, landmark Phase I clinical trial.

Bioheart, Inc. Acquires Exclusive Option Rights To Tissue Genesis, Inc.’s Cell Technology For The Acute Treatment Of Heart Attacks
Bioheart, Inc. announced today that it has acquired an option to the worldwide exclusive rights to Tissue Genesis, Inc.’s adipose (fat) derived therapeutic cell technology, which is being developed to treat heart attacks and congestive heart failure.

Federal Legislation Could Restore Biotech Funding
A U.S. Senate committee has boosted the biotechnology industry’s hope that legislation will soon again allow many venture-backed companies to win research grants set aside for small businesses.

Phase III Medical Receives License to Operate Adult Peripheral Blood Stem Cell Bank
This license, issued by the State of California Department of Health Services, permits Phase III, through its subsidiary NeoStem, Inc., to begin commercial collection, processing and storage of peripheral blood progenitor cells (adult stem cells) for autologous use.

Medistem’s International Affiliate ICM Granted License to Operate Adult Stem Cell Bank and Clinic
Medistem Laboratories, Inc. has announced that its affiliate, the Institute for Cellular Medicine (ICM), has received approval from the Costa Rican Health Ministry to begin operations of its adult stem cell bank and clinic.


NIH Policy on Late Submission of Grant Applications (NOT-OD-06-086)

Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Program Contract Solicitation Now Available (NOT-OD-06-091)

Resubmission/Amended NHLBI Career Development (K Series) Awards are to be submitted for the Standard NIH Receipt Dates (NOT-HL-06-133)

Mentored Clinical Scientist Research Career Development Award (K08) (PA-06-512)

Extramural Loan Repayment Program for Clinical Researchers (LRP) (PA-06-517)


FDA Workshop on Molecular Methods in Immunohematology


Food and Drug Administration (United States of America)

Food and Drug Administration Electronic Submissions Gateway

FDA Rejects Key Provision of Drug Safety Bill
The long-awaited effort to overhaul the nation’s drug safety efforts faces FDA opposition as agency officials reject a recent legislative proposal to improve risk management plans as “unrealistic.” But at least one congressional source dismissed the criticism.

Industry Exchange Workshop on Food and Drug Administration Clinical Trial Requirements; Public Workshop

Food and Drug Administration-Regulated Products Containing Nanotechnology Materials; Public Meeting


For more information on the Somatic Cell Therapy Symposium, see www.celltherapysociety.org.

AABB-ISCT Cellular Therapy Audioconference Series

European branch of the International Society for Cellular Therapy (ISCT-Europe) and German Society for Transfusion Medicine and Immunohematology (DGTI) Joint meeting “Regulatory Framework for Advanced Medicinal Products in Europe”

Profiled Journal

Current Issue: Volume 15, No. 5


Original Contributions

Fate of Embryonic Stem Cells Transplanted Into the Deafened Mammalian Cochlea
B. Coleman, J. Hardman, A. Coco, S. Epp, M. de Silva, J. Crook, and R. Shepherd

Porcine Fetal Ventral Mesencephalic Cells Are Targets for Primed Xenoreactive Human T Cells
Jan Koopmans, Aalzen de Haan, Elinda Bruin, Ieneke van der Gun, Henk van Dijk, Jan Rozing, Lou de Leij, and Michiel Staal

Ectopic Ossification in the Scar Tissue of Rats With Myocardial Infarction
Karla Consort Ribeiro, Elisabete César Mattos, João Pedro Saar Werneck-de-Castro, Vanessa Pinho Ribeiro, Ricardo Henrique Costa-e-Sousa, Amarildo Miranda, Emerson Lopes Olivares, Marcos Farina, José Geraldo Mill, Regina Coeli dos Santos Goldenberg, Masako Oya Masuda, and Antônio Carlos Campos de Carvalho

Suppression of Human T-Cell Responses to ?-Cells by Activation of B7-H4 Pathway
Dawei Ou, Xiaojie Wang, Daniel L. Metzger, Ziliang Ao, Paolo Pozzilli, Roger F. L. James,
Lieping Chen, and Garth L. Warnock

Regeneration of Osteonecrosis of Canine Scapho-lunate Using Bone Marrow Stromal Cells: Possible Therapeutic Approach for Kienböck Disease
Ryosuke Ikeguchi, Ryosuke Kakinoki, Tomoki Aoyama, Kotaro Roberts Shibata, Seiji Otsuka, Kennichi Fukiage, Koichi Nishijo, Tatsuya Ishibe, Yasuko Shima, Bungo Otsuki, Takashi Azuma, Sadami Tsutsumi, Tomitaka Nakayama, Takanobu Otsuka, Takashi Nakamura, and Junya Toguchida

Assessment of In Vitro Applicability of Reversibly Immortalized NKNT-3 Cells and Clonal Derivatives
Ruurdtje Hoekstra, Tanja Deurholt, Lysbeth ten Bloemendaal, Mireille Desille, Albert C. W. A. van Wijk, Bruno Clement, Ronald P. J. Oude Elferink, Thomas M. van Gulik, and Robert A. F. M. Chamuleau

A Novel Bioreactor Miccrocarrier Cell Culture System for High Yields of Proliferating Autologous Human Keratinocytes
Jin Yu Liu, Jürg Hafner, Galya Dragieva, and Günter Burg

High Yields of Autologous Living Dermal Equivalents Using Porcine Gelatin Microbeads as Microcarriers for Autologous Fibroblasts
Jin Yu Liu, Jürg Hafner, Galya Dragieva, and Günter Burg

Cell Transplantation publishes original, peer-reviewed research and review articles on the subject of cell transplantation and its application to human diseases. To ensure high-quality contributions from all areas of transplantation, separate section editors and editorial boards have been established. Articles deal with a wide range of topics including physiological, medical, preclinical, tissue engineering, and device-oriented aspects of transplantation of nervous system, endocrine, growth factor-secreting, bone marrow, epithelial, endothelial, and genetically engineered cells, among others. Basic clinical studies and immunological research papers are also featured. To provide complete coverage of this revolutionary field, Cell Transplantation will report on relevant technological advances, and ethical and regulatory considerations of cell transplants.

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