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Stem cells have the remarkable potential to develop into many different cell types in the body during early life and growth. In addition, in many tissues they serve as a sort of internal repair system, dividing essentially without limit to replenish other cells as long as the person or animal is still alive. When a stem cell divides, each new cell has the potential either to remain a stem cell or become another type of cell with a more specialized function, such as a muscle cell, a red blood cell, or a brain cell.

Stem cells are distinguished from other cell types by two important characteristics. First, they are unspecialized cells capable of renewing themselves through cell division, sometimes after long periods of inactivity. Second, under certain physiologic or experimental conditions, they can be induced to become tissue- or organ-specific cells with special functions. In some organs, such as the gut and bone marrow, stem cells regularly divide to repair and replace worn out or damaged tissues. In other organs, however, such as the pancreas and the heart, stem cells only divide under special conditions.
Neurology Times features special coverage of MS in observance of MS Awareness Month

Neurology Times features special coverage of MS in observance of MS Awareness Month

UBM Medica US announces that Neurology Times, a leading online community and information resource for neurologists and other healthcare providers, is featuring special coverage of multiple sclerosis in observance of MS Awareness Month. [More]
New bone marrow transplant unit launched in Bangalore, India

New bone marrow transplant unit launched in Bangalore, India

A bone marrow transplant can mean the difference between life and death for people with blood cancers and related disorders. But many patients in India can't afford the high treatment costs, and for them a transplant is not an option. This is changing thanks to a newly launched bone marrow transplant unit at M.S. Ramaiah Medical College in Bangalore. [More]
Researchers identify promising new approach to treat pulmonary fibrosis

Researchers identify promising new approach to treat pulmonary fibrosis

By uncovering the mechanism by which fibrous tissue cells in the lung multiply, researchers at The Saban Research Institute of Children's Hospital Los Angeles, along with colleagues in Mexico and Canada, have identified a promising new approach for the treatment of pulmonary fibrosis. [More]
Researchers team up to study stomach flu

Researchers team up to study stomach flu

Rice University bioengineers are teaming with colleagues from Baylor College of Medicine and MD Anderson Cancer Center to apply the latest techniques in tissue engineering toward the study of one of the most common and deadly human illnesses -- the stomach flu. [More]
Penn researchers find evidence of new culprit in colon cancer

Penn researchers find evidence of new culprit in colon cancer

Colon cancer is a heavily studied disease -- and for good reason. It is one of the leading causes of cancer-related deaths worldwide, and its numbers are on the rise, from 500,00 deaths in 1990 to 700,000 in 2010. [More]
Study defines new subtype of 'lethal' prostate cancer

Study defines new subtype of 'lethal' prostate cancer

A University of Colorado Cancer Center study published in the journal Cancer Research defines a new, distinct subtype of "lethal" prostate cancer marked by the loss of two genes, MAP3K7 and CHD1. Overall about 10 percent of men with prostate cancer will die from the disease. [More]
CTCA in Philadelphia installs TomoHDA TomoTherapy machine to provide precise treatment to patients

CTCA in Philadelphia installs TomoHDA TomoTherapy machine to provide precise treatment to patients

Cancer Treatment Centers of America in Philadelphia has announced the installation of the TomoHDA TomoTherapy machine. TomoTherapy combines an advanced form of intensity modulated radiation therapy (IMRT), with the accuracy of computed tomography (CT) scanning technology, all in one machine. [More]
Combination of anti-Nodal and DTIC therapy can produce anti-cancer effects

Combination of anti-Nodal and DTIC therapy can produce anti-cancer effects

Metastatic melanoma is the leading cause of skin cancer deaths in the United States; once melanoma has spread (metastasized), life expectancy for patients can be dramatically shortened. [More]
Gene variant may help predict people’s response to investigational Alzheimer's therapy

Gene variant may help predict people’s response to investigational Alzheimer's therapy

Researchers at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine have identified a gene variant that may be used to predict people most likely to respond to an investigational therapy under development for Alzheimer's disease (AD). [More]
Finding could lead to more effective, less invasive treatment for 'bubble boy' disease

Finding could lead to more effective, less invasive treatment for 'bubble boy' disease

For infants with severe combined immunodeficiency (SCID), something as simple as a common cold or ear infection can be fatal. Born with an incomplete immune system, kids who have SCID--also known as "bubble boy" or "bubble baby" disease--can't fight off even the mildest of germs. [More]
Neuralstem reports top line data from NSI-566 Phase II trial for treatment of ALS

Neuralstem reports top line data from NSI-566 Phase II trial for treatment of ALS

Neuralstem, Inc. announced top line data from the Phase II trial of NSI-566 spinal cord-derived neural stem cells under development for the treatment of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). The study met primary safety endpoints. The maximum tolerated dose of 16 million transplanted cells and the surgery was well tolerated. [More]
New stem cell treatment reverses disability in certain MS patients

New stem cell treatment reverses disability in certain MS patients

A PIONEERING new stem cell treatment ‘rebooting’ the immune system in some multiple sclerosis sufferers is being hailed as an encouraging step forward in the treatment of the disease in sufferers who fail to respond to standard therapies. [More]
United Therapeutics announces FDA approval of dinutuximab for treatment of high-risk neuroblastoma

United Therapeutics announces FDA approval of dinutuximab for treatment of high-risk neuroblastoma

United Therapeutics Corporation announced today that the United States Food and Drug Administration has approved Unituxin (dinutuximab) Injection (formerly called ch14.18), in combination with granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF), interleukin-2 (IL-2), and 13-cis-retinoic acid (RA), for the treatment of pediatric patients with high-risk neuroblastoma who achieve at least a partial response to prior first-line multiagent, multimodality therapy. [More]
Imperial scientists develop new test that uses human stem cells to predict side effects of drugs

Imperial scientists develop new test that uses human stem cells to predict side effects of drugs

Scientists at Imperial College London have developed a test that uses combinations of cells from a single donor's blood to predict whether a new drug will cause a severe immune reaction in humans. [More]
Snai1 protein plays major role in deciding fate of intestinal stem cells

Snai1 protein plays major role in deciding fate of intestinal stem cells

An international group of researchers has shown that a regulatory protein involved in controlling how cancer spreads through the body also influences the fate of stem cells in the intestine of mice. The results, which are published in The EMBO Journal, show that the Snai1 protein plays an important role in deciding the fate of intestinal stem cells and the different functions that these cells can adopt. [More]
CPRIT awards research and recruitment grants to improve cancer research

CPRIT awards research and recruitment grants to improve cancer research

The Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas (CPRIT) has awarded UT Southwestern Medical Center researchers more than $7.5 million in research grants to improve diagnostic and therapeutic services and research relating to cancers of the brain, breast, throat, and bone, as well as to improve scientific understanding of cancer biology. [More]
Non-viral gene therapy provides relief for diabetics with constant foot pain

Non-viral gene therapy provides relief for diabetics with constant foot pain

Walking barefoot on sand "felt like walking on glass" for Keith Wenckowski, who has lived with type-one diabetes for more than two decades. [More]
Novogen's TRXE-009 therapy shows promise against brain cancer

Novogen's TRXE-009 therapy shows promise against brain cancer

Australian/US biotechnology company, Novogen Limited, today announces that it has confirmed that one of its lead candidate products, TRXE-009, is showing the potential to become an important new therapy in the fight against adult and pediatric brain cancer. [More]
Existing drug could help treat MS, other neurological diseases

Existing drug could help treat MS, other neurological diseases

Damage to myelin, the fatty insulator that enables communication between nerve cells, characterizes multiple sclerosis (MS) and other devastating neurological diseases. [More]
Culture conditions in which stem cells are grown can affect genetic stability

Culture conditions in which stem cells are grown can affect genetic stability

The therapeutic promise of human stem cells is indisputably huge, but the process of translating their potential into effective, real-world treatments involves deciphering and resolving a host of daunting complexities. [More]
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