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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.
Research sheds light on how subtle genetic differences in DMD patients produce variation in symptoms

Research sheds light on how subtle genetic differences in DMD patients produce variation in symptoms

Johns Hopkins researchers report they have inadvertently found a way to make human muscle cells bearing genetic mutations from people with Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD). [More]
Small drug-like molecule that alters perception of food may hold key to extending human healthspan

Small drug-like molecule that alters perception of food may hold key to extending human healthspan

Researchers at the Buck Institute have shown a new effect on aging via a small drug-like molecule that alters the perception of food in the nematode C. elegans. Publishing in Aging Cell, researchers "tricked" the worm's metabolism into a state of caloric restriction, extending the animal's lifespan by 50 percent. [More]
Bone marrow transplantation dose may have lasting effects on HSC behavior

Bone marrow transplantation dose may have lasting effects on HSC behavior

Unlike aspirin, bone marrow doesn't come with a neatly printed label with dosage instructions. However, a new study published in Cell Reports provides clues about how the dose of transplanted bone marrow might affect patients undergoing this risky procedure, frequently used to treat cancer and blood diseases. [More]
WPI receives patent for novel method of reprogramming human skin cells

WPI receives patent for novel method of reprogramming human skin cells

Cell therapies for a range of serious conditions, including heart attacks, diabetes, and traumatic injuries, will be accelerated by research at Worcester Polytechnic Institute that yielded a newly patented method of converting human skin cells into engines of wound healing and tissue regeneration. [More]
Sylvester researchers test new KTE-C19 therapy for patients with aggressive non-Hodgkin's lymphoma

Sylvester researchers test new KTE-C19 therapy for patients with aggressive non-Hodgkin's lymphoma

Researchers at Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine are testing a novel cellular immunotherapy approach to treating patients with diffuse large B-cell lymphoma who have failed standard therapy. [More]
Phase I study of triple drug combination shows promise in multiple myeloma patients

Phase I study of triple drug combination shows promise in multiple myeloma patients

PharmaMar announces the positive results from a Phase I study of plitidepsin in combination with bortezomib and dexamethasone in patients with relapsed and/or refractory multiple myeloma. [More]
Two-way communication between cancer cells may be key to tumor metastasis

Two-way communication between cancer cells may be key to tumor metastasis

Two-way communication between cancer cells appears to be key to their becoming motile, clustering and spreading through metastasis, according to Rice University scientists. [More]
New experimental model may predict eventual cardiac phenotype in pediatric patients

New experimental model may predict eventual cardiac phenotype in pediatric patients

An experimental model uses genetics-guided biomechanics and patient-derived stem cells to predict what type of inherited heart defect a child will develop, according to authors of a new study in the journal Cell. [More]
EAD therapy can shrink size of triple-negative breast cancer tumors in mice

EAD therapy can shrink size of triple-negative breast cancer tumors in mice

In a new study using mice and lab-grown human cells, a scientific team led by Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center researchers show how a triple-drug cocktail can shrink triple-negative breast cancers by killing off cancer cells and halting new tumor growth. [More]
World’s first-of-its-kind insurance plan launched to make stem cell treatment accessible and affordable

World’s first-of-its-kind insurance plan launched to make stem cell treatment accessible and affordable

The world’s first global stem cell healthcare plan, CellPlan, was launched today at the World Cord Blood Congress Europe 2016, London. [More]
Effective chemotherapeutic drug may induce permanent hearing loss in Cockayne syndrome individuals

Effective chemotherapeutic drug may induce permanent hearing loss in Cockayne syndrome individuals

The chemotherapy drug cisplatin can kill cancer, but it can also cause permanent hearing loss. [More]
Allogeneic HSCT offers good survival for select TKI-refractory CML patients

Allogeneic HSCT offers good survival for select TKI-refractory CML patients

Allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation is associated with a high rate of survival for carefully chosen chronic myeloid leukaemia patients who do not respond well to tyrosine kinase inhibitor therapy, research suggests. [More]
New bio-mimicry method allows scientists to track cells in vivo using MRI during preclinical, clinical trials

New bio-mimicry method allows scientists to track cells in vivo using MRI during preclinical, clinical trials

Researchers led by Carnegie Mellon University Professor of Biological Sciences Chien Ho have developed a new method for preparing mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) that not only leads to the production of more native stem cells, but also labels them with a FDA approved iron-oxide nanoparticle (Ferumoxytol). [More]
Exposure to BBP can make babies obese even before they are born

Exposure to BBP can make babies obese even before they are born

Benzyl butyl phthalate (BBP), a chemical commonly used in the food manufacturing process, can increase fat stores in the body even before we're born, according to a new study published in the Journal of Molecular and Cellular Endocrinology. [More]
Oct4 gene may play significant role in preventing underlying cause of heart attacks, strokes

Oct4 gene may play significant role in preventing underlying cause of heart attacks, strokes

A gene that scientific dogma insists is inactive in adults actually plays a vital role in preventing the underlying cause of most heart attacks and strokes, researchers at the University of Virginia School of Medicine have determined. [More]
Novel therapeutic approach to treat leukaemia patients

Novel therapeutic approach to treat leukaemia patients

Cancer cells have an abnormal cell division and survival machinery - they grow faster than they die. For their permanent development, they produce an excess of growth factors and nutrients and block the body's own safety mechanisms. [More]
Phase 2 results of AbbVie’s venetoclax in patients with R/R CLL with 17p deletion published in The Lancet Oncology

Phase 2 results of AbbVie’s venetoclax in patients with R/R CLL with 17p deletion published in The Lancet Oncology

AbbVie, a global biopharmaceutical company, today announced The Lancet Oncology published results from the Phase 2, single arm, open label trial studying venetoclax in patients with relapsed/refractory (R/R) chronic lymphocytic leukaemia (CLL) with 17p deletion. [More]
Ipsen partners with IMCB to advance understanding and research of Botulinum Neurotoxin Biology

Ipsen partners with IMCB to advance understanding and research of Botulinum Neurotoxin Biology

Ipsen S.A., a global specialty-driven pharmaceutical company, and the Institute of Molecular and Cell Biology (IMCB), a research institute under the aegis of the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR), Singapore, today announced the signature of a research partnership to study the intracellular trafficking of botulinum neurotoxins (BoNTs) within neurons. [More]
ISSCR releases updated guidelines for stem cell research, development of new therapies

ISSCR releases updated guidelines for stem cell research, development of new therapies

The International Society for Stem Cell Research, the world's largest professional organization of stem cell scientists, today released newly updated guidelines for stem cell research and the development of new clinical therapies. [More]
Histone mutation linked to fatal pediatric brain tumor

Histone mutation linked to fatal pediatric brain tumor

A single defect in a gene that codes for a histone — a "spool" that wraps idle DNA — is linked to pediatric cancers in a study published today in the journal Science. [More]
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