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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.
Salk researchers move one step closer to making cures for genetic diseases a reality

Salk researchers move one step closer to making cures for genetic diseases a reality

Healthy brain, muscle, eye and heart cells would improve the lives of tens of thousands of people around the world with debilitating mitochondrial diseases. Now, researchers at the Salk Institute have gotten one step closer to making such cures a reality: they've turned cells from patients into healthy, mutation-free stem cells that can then become any cell type. [More]
Americord Registry reports new policy for client reimbursement

Americord Registry reports new policy for client reimbursement

Americord Registry, a private cord blood, cord tissue, and placenta tissue banking company, announced today that it is introducing a new policy for client reimbursement. Starting immediately, Americord will offer full reimbursements for cancellation fees that are often incurred by parents who sign up with other cord blood banks. [More]
Gene therapy provides life-long protection to photoreceptor cells in animal model of retinitis pigmentosa

Gene therapy provides life-long protection to photoreceptor cells in animal model of retinitis pigmentosa

A collaboration between scientists in the UK and the USA has shown that gene therapy can give life-long protection to the light-sensitive photoreceptor cells responsible for colour vision in a mouse model of the most common inherited eye disorder. [More]
Agilent and BTI collaborate to address a critical need in biopharmaceutical industry

Agilent and BTI collaborate to address a critical need in biopharmaceutical industry

The collaboration will address a gap in analytical tests and standards applied for drugs based on glycoproteins, which now form the majority of approved biopharmaceutical drugs. Current analytical methods for characterizing glycans are time-consuming and difficult to deploy in commercial environments. They are also limited in their ability to detect and analyze minor glycan species. [More]
Transplanted MSCs slow progression of lupus nephritis by suppressing Tfh cells in SLE animal model

Transplanted MSCs slow progression of lupus nephritis by suppressing Tfh cells in SLE animal model

Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) is an autoimmune disease that produces autoantibodies and subsequent immune reactions that can lead to a variety of symptoms, including inflammation of the kidneys, or nephritis. When researchers transplanted mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) derived from human bone marrow into mice modeled with SLE, they found that inflammation was reduced and nephritis "attenuated." [More]
Study shows possibility of using embryonic stem cells to repair damaged lung tissue

Study shows possibility of using embryonic stem cells to repair damaged lung tissue

Collectively, such diseases of the airways as emphysema, bronchitis, asthma and cystic fibrosis are the second leading cause of death worldwide. More than 35 million Americans alone suffer from chronic respiratory disease. Weizmann Institute scientists have now proposed a new direction that could, in the future, lead to the development of a method for alleviating some of their suffering. [More]
Scientists gain insights into dynamic remodeling of tissue during lung repair

Scientists gain insights into dynamic remodeling of tissue during lung repair

Our lungs are permanently exposed to harmful environmental factors that can damage or even destroy their cells. In a specific regenerative process these injured cells must be replaced as soon as possible. In collaboration with colleagues from the Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry, scientists at the Helmholtz Zentrum München have now, for the first time, gained detailed insights into the dynamic remodeling of the tissue during lung repair. [More]
Acceleration of cell cycle transition kinetic can make human blood stem cells more powerful

Acceleration of cell cycle transition kinetic can make human blood stem cells more powerful

For the first time, the research group of Prof. Claudia Waskow at the Carl Gustav Carus Faculty of Medicine at Dresden Technical University is now describing a new mechanism in which the length of the G1 phase of the cell cycle has a dramatic impact on the fitness of human blood stem cells. [More]
Scientists uncover new genes that affect development and maintenance of blood stem cell

Scientists uncover new genes that affect development and maintenance of blood stem cell

Even though the transplantation of blood stem cells, also known as bone marrow, has saved many lives over many decades, the genes that control the number or function of blood stem cells are not fully understood. In a study published in June in Stem Cell Reports, the USC Stem Cell labs of Hooman Allayee and Gregor Adams uncovered new genes that affect blood stem cell development and maintenance. [More]
Vanderbilt receives $12.8 million federal grant to develop better ways to predict effects of drugs in patients

Vanderbilt receives $12.8 million federal grant to develop better ways to predict effects of drugs in patients

Vanderbilt University Medical Center has received a five-year, $12.8 million grant from the federal government to develop better ways to predict how patients will respond to the drugs they're given. [More]
Cedars-Sinai scientists identify genes responsible for tumor growth in high grade brain tumors

Cedars-Sinai scientists identify genes responsible for tumor growth in high grade brain tumors

After generating new brain tumor models, Cedars-Sinai scientists in the Board of Governors Regenerative Medicine Institute identified the role of a family of genes underlying tumor growth in a wide spectrum of high grade brain tumors. [More]
Potential molecular link identified between excess fat in the blood and blood vessel recovery in ischemia

Potential molecular link identified between excess fat in the blood and blood vessel recovery in ischemia

The buildup of fat in the blood makes a bad situation worse - it not only raises a person's risk for heart attack or stroke but also impairs the growth of new blood vessels. How excess fat in the blood - a condition known as hyperlipidemia - blocks vessel growth was unclear, but new work by researchers at Temple University School of Medicine shows that a molecule known as caspase-1 plays a central role and that preventing its activity could be the key to building new blood vessels and restoring blood supply to oxygen-starved tissues. [More]
Researchers discover molecule that may favour production of induced pluripotent cells

Researchers discover molecule that may favour production of induced pluripotent cells

Since 2006, research has succeeded in generating, from specialised adult cells, induced pluripotent cells (iPS cells), with huge potential applications, particularly for regenerative medicine. However, the process has still not been completely mastered. Two teams of researchers from Inserm, CNRS, Centre Léon Bérard and Claude Bernard Lyon 1 University have discovered a molecule that may favour the production of these induced stem cells. [More]
UC San Diego, GSK collaborate to treat leukemia by eliminating cancer stem cells

UC San Diego, GSK collaborate to treat leukemia by eliminating cancer stem cells

Researchers at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine and Moores Cancer Center are working with GSK on a bench-to-bedside project to treat leukemia and other diseases by eliminating cancer stem cells. The collaboration is part of GSK's Discovery Partnerships with Academia (DPAc) program, where academic partners become core members of drug-hunting teams. [More]
Rutgers' Martha Lansing named Family Physician of the Year by NJAFP

Rutgers' Martha Lansing named Family Physician of the Year by NJAFP

Martha Lansing, MD, associate professor and vice chair of family medicine and community health at Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School and a resident of Hopewell, NJ, has been named the Family Physician of the Year by the New Jersey Academy of Family Physicians. [More]
UC researcher awarded NCI grant to study effect of MED1 protein on HER2-positive breast cancer

UC researcher awarded NCI grant to study effect of MED1 protein on HER2-positive breast cancer

Xiaoting Zhang, PhD, associate professor in the Department of Cancer Biology at the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine, has received a $1.8 million, five-year, R01 award (R01CA197865) from the National Cancer Institute to continue breast cancer research focusing on the function of the protein MED1 on HER2-positive breast cancer. [More]
LSD1 enzyme turns off genes needed to maintain cancer stem cell properties in glioblastoma

LSD1 enzyme turns off genes needed to maintain cancer stem cell properties in glioblastoma

Cancer's ability to grow unchecked is often attributed to cancer stem cells, a small fraction of cancer cells that have the capacity to grow and multiply indefinitely. How cancer stem cells retain this property while the bulk of a tumor's cells do not remains largely unknown. Using human tumor samples and mouse models, researchers at University of California, San Diego School of Medicine and Moores Cancer Center discovered that cancer stem cell properties are determined by epigenetic changes -- chemical modifications cells use to control which genes are turned on or off. [More]
Dental pulp stem cell transplants can contribute to peripheral nerve regeneration

Dental pulp stem cell transplants can contribute to peripheral nerve regeneration

Peripheral nerve injuries often are caused by trauma or surgical complications and can result in considerable disabilities. Regeneration of peripheral nerves can be accomplished effectively using autologous (self-donated) nerve grafts, but that procedure may sacrifice a functional nerve and cause loss of sensation in another part of the patient's body. [More]
AOSSM to present awards and grants to encourage cutting-edge research in orthopaedic sports medicine

AOSSM to present awards and grants to encourage cutting-edge research in orthopaedic sports medicine

In order to recognize and encourage cutting-edge research in key areas of orthopaedic sports medicine, the American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine will present ten research awards and seven grants during its Annual Meeting, July 9-12 in Orlando, FL. [More]
Study could provide paradigm shift in treatment of age-related disease, cancer

Study could provide paradigm shift in treatment of age-related disease, cancer

Intermittent dosing with rapamycin selectively breaks the cascade of inflammatory events that follow cellular senescence, a phenomena in which cells cease to divide in response to DNA damaging agents, including many chemotherapies. [More]
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