Volume 8.23 | Jun 18

Volume 8.23, June 18, 2007
     In this issue: Science | Policy | Business | NIH | CBER | Regulatory
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Top Stories

BD Biosciences and StemCell Technologies Sign License Agreements with WARF: BD Biosciences and StemCell Technologies Sign License Agreements with WARF to commercialize novel culture media and surfaces for human embryonic stem cell research.

Stem Cell Transplants Ease Parkinson’s Symptoms in Monkeys: US researchers have for the first time injected human stem cells into monkeys with Parkinson’s symptoms, seen as a key step in the fight to find a cure.


Research Indicates Geron’s Human Embryonic Stem Cell-Based Therapeutic for Spinal Cord Injury Evades Direct Attack by the Human Immune System
Geron Corporation has announced the presentation of research studies indicating that GRNOPC1, the company’s human embryonic stem cell (hESC)-based therapeutic for the treatment of spinal cord injury, evades a direct attack by the human immune system.

Pluristem’s PLX Cells Demonstrate Potential to Treat Parkinson’s Disease
An in vitro assay demonstrated that Pluristem’s PLX cells can be differentiated into dopaminergic neurons.

Scientists Culture Blood-forming Stem Cells From Human Fat Tissue
Researchers at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine have successfully isolated and cultured human hematopoietic stem cells from fat, or adipose, tissue, suggesting that they have found another important source of cells for reconstituting the bone marrow of patients undergoing intensive radiation therapy for blood cancers.

‘Dolly’ Scientist: Make Human Stem Cells From Animal Eggs
Ian Wilmut, who made history when he cloned Dolly the sheep in 1996, is now calling on scientists to inject human DNA into animal egg cells as a workaround to ethical and legal roadblocks.

Studies To Find Better Ways To Preserve Human Eggs, Ovarian Tissue Under Way
The goal is to make human eggs, ovarian tissue, blood vessels, even whole organs available when needed.

Stem Cell Genes May Provide Medicine’s Dream Ticket
Gene therapists are using their skills to make “improved” stem cells for regenerative therapies.

Now Playing: Cell Migration LIVE!
Johns Hopkins researchers have found a way to directly observe cell migration – in real time and in living tissue.

Big Strides After Cell Transfer
Specialists working on cell transfer research to help heart attack patients have said the initial results after six months are encouraging.

Interim Analysis of Anti-Cancer Vaccine, BiovaxID, to be Conducted
Biovest International, Inc. announces a milestone in its effort to gain accelerated conditional approval for BiovaxID(TM). The independent Data Monitoring Committee (DMC) has requested an interim analysis of all primary and secondary endpoints.

LifeCell Corporation Receives 510(k) Clearance for Tissue Repair Product
LifeCell Corporation has announced that the Company received 510(k) clearance from the United States Food and Drug Administration for Strattice(TM) tissue matrix, a novel soft tissue repair product.

South Korean Cloning Scientist Looking Overseas
South Korea’s disgraced stem cell scientist Hwang Woo-suk, who is on trial for criminal fraud, is in Thailand to discuss joining an international consortium for human embryonic stem cell research.

Can Adult Stem Cells Do It All?
Scientists may have turned mouse skin cells into embryolike stem cells, but prior claims for the power of adult cells have yet to stand the test of time.

Stem Cell Research Flaws Don’t Change Findings
An investigative panel with the journal Nature say flawed data in an article authored by University of Minnesota stem cell researcher Catherine Verfaillie do not detract from the main findings of the paper.


Can We Develop Ethically Universal Embryonic Stem Cell Lines?
Human embryonic stem-cell (hESC) research faces opposition from those who object to the destruction of human embryos. Do any of the new approaches that have been proposed for deriving hESC lines without injuring a living embryo have the potential to provide a source of hESCs that will be acceptable to those who oppose the current approaches?


The Student Society for Stem Cell Research (SSSCR)
SSSCR is an international network dedicated to advancing scientific research for cures. Our network spans over 15 countries, 100 institutions, and 35 U.S. states. Our network includes students, professionals, and patient advocates. We are a special project of the Genetics Policy Institute and a member of the Coalition for the Advancement of Medical Research. Get plugged-in and be a part of the future of stem cell research. Join today, http://www.ssscr.org/main/join_now.

$450 Million Stem Cell Research Referendum Planned
New Jersey voters will be asked in November to approve borrowing $450 million to fund stem cell research in the state for 10 years under an agreement reached between top legislators and Gov. Jon S. Corzine.


Invitrogen Launches New Engineered Stem Cell Line
Invitrogen Corporation has announced it has launched a new engineered stem cell line that will allow scientists to monitor the pluripotency of human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) without sacrificing those cells.

ViaCord and Children’s Hospital Oakland Research Institute Announce 100th Cord Blood Transplant
This historic milestone includes transplants through cord blood collected, preserved and stored with ViaCord and transplants using cord blood stored through CHORI’s Sibling Donor Cord Blood Program.

Surrey and Irvine to Investigate Use of Nanomaterials in Stem Cell Therapies
University of Surrey researchers, Dr Alan Dalton and Dr Richard Sear, have received grants totalling £100k from the SETsquared Applied Collaborative Research Programme and the EPSRC to support collaborative work with the University of California, Irvine, researching the use of nanomaterials in stem cell growth.


Request for Information (RFI): Development of Assays/In Vitro Devices for Use in Clinical Oncology (NOT-CA-07-019)

Advancing Novel Science in Women’s Health Research (ANSWHR) [R21] (PAS-07-381)

Advancing Novel Science in Women’s Health Research (ANSWHR) (R03) (PAS-07-382)


Human Tissue Task Force – 2007 Report


FOOD AND DRUG ADMINISTRATION (Untited States of America)

FDA Called ‘Cozy’ with Drugmakers
While revising their drug-review policy last year, Food and Drug Administration officials met 112 times with industry representatives but only five times with consumer and patient groups.


Clinical Trials Expert Advisory Group Summary Minutes – April 18, 2007


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