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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.
A*STAR, Roche partner to identify novel drug targets for cancer treatment

A*STAR, Roche partner to identify novel drug targets for cancer treatment

A*STAR's Bioprocessing Technology Institute has entered into an agreement with one of the world's largest pharmaceutical company, Roche, to identify novel drug candidates for the detection and treatment of cancer. [More]
ADSC transplantation promotes adult neurogenesis in brains of Alzheimer's disease mice

ADSC transplantation promotes adult neurogenesis in brains of Alzheimer's disease mice

Recent evidence has demonstrated that transplantation of mesenchymal stem cells can stimulate neurogenesis in the brain of adult rat or mouse models of Alzheimer's disease (AD) and improve tissue and function injury under the condition of cerebral ischemia. [More]
New genetic programs for taking blank-slate stem cells and turning them into human blood

New genetic programs for taking blank-slate stem cells and turning them into human blood

The ability to reliably and safely make in the laboratory all of the different types of cells in human blood is one key step closer to reality. [More]

New mouse model supports transplantation of human blood stem cells without need for irradiation

A novel mouse model allows for the transplantation of human blood-forming stem cells without the need for irradiation therapy.For many years scientists have been trying to unravel mechanisms that guide function and differentiation of blood stem cells, those cells that generate all blood cells including our immune system. [More]
New approach for developing personalized gene therapies to treat retinitis pigmentosa

New approach for developing personalized gene therapies to treat retinitis pigmentosa

Columbia University Medical Center researchers have created a way to develop personalized gene therapies for patients with retinitis pigmentosa (RP), a leading cause of vision loss. [More]
Astellas seeks isavuconazole approval from FDA for treatment of life-threatening fungal infections

Astellas seeks isavuconazole approval from FDA for treatment of life-threatening fungal infections

Astellas today announced it has submitted a New Drug Application (NDA) to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration seeking approval for isavuconazole for the treatment of invasive aspergillosis and invasive mucormycosis (also known as zygomycosis), life-threatening fungal infections predominantly occurring in immunocompromised patients. [More]
New gene therapy may be effective for fighting fungal infections in cancer patients

New gene therapy may be effective for fighting fungal infections in cancer patients

Sleeping Beauty and fungal infections - not two items one would normally associate together, but for immunocompromised cancer patients they may prove to be a helpful combination. [More]
First report of spinal cord mass arising from spinal cord cell transplantation

First report of spinal cord mass arising from spinal cord cell transplantation

A spinal mass was identified in a young woman with complete spinal cord injury 8 years after she had undergone implantation of olfactory mucosal cells in the hopes of regaining sensory and motor function. [More]
Study provides new knowledge about EphA2 receptor involved in several forms of cancer

Study provides new knowledge about EphA2 receptor involved in several forms of cancer

Researchers at Karolinska Institutet in Sweden have headed a study that provides new knowledge about the EphA2 receptor, which is significant in several forms of cancer. This is important knowledge in itself - but just as important is how this study, which is published in the highly respected journal Nature Methods, was conducted. [More]
Discovery points the way to potential new strategies to treat blood disorders

Discovery points the way to potential new strategies to treat blood disorders

Like a line of falling dominos, a cascade of molecular events in the bone marrow produces high levels of inflammation that disrupt normal blood formation and lead to potentially deadly disorders including leukemia, an Indiana University-led research team has reported. [More]
Researchers reveal how schizophrenia-linked genetic variation alters skeletons of developing brain cells

Researchers reveal how schizophrenia-linked genetic variation alters skeletons of developing brain cells

Johns Hopkins researchers have begun to connect the dots between a schizophrenia-linked genetic variation and its effect on the developing brain. As they report July 3 in the journal Cell Stem Cell, their experiments show that the loss of a particular gene alters the skeletons of developing brain cells, which in turn disrupts the orderly layers those cells would normally form. [More]
Findings provide new insights into the basic biology of stem cells

Findings provide new insights into the basic biology of stem cells

A team of researchers from the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine, Oregon Health & Science University and Salk Institute for Biological Studies has shown for the first time that stem cells created using different methods produce differing cells. [More]
Researchers discover a way to restore corneal surface

Researchers discover a way to restore corneal surface

A Boston-based scientific collaborative, led by Harvard Stem Cell Institute researchers, has discovered a way to collect the best cell type for regenerating a damaged cornea-the clear membrane that covers the pupil and directs light into the back of the eye. [More]
Bone marrow transplantation shows promising results among patients with severe sickle cell disease

Bone marrow transplantation shows promising results among patients with severe sickle cell disease

Use of a lower intensity bone marrow transplantation method showed promising results among 30 patients (16-65 years of age) with severe sickle cell disease, according to a study in the July 2 issue of JAMA. [More]
A*STAR scientists pioneered a molecular connection between obesity and diabetes

A*STAR scientists pioneered a molecular connection between obesity and diabetes

Scientists from the Institute of Molecular and Cell Biology, a research institute under the Agency for Science, Technology and Research, have discovered that obese individuals lack a protein that is essential for regulating blood glucose levels, causing them to face higher risks of developing diabetes. [More]
Complete analysis of regenerative medicine market

Complete analysis of regenerative medicine market

According to a new market research report by Allied Market Research titled, "GlobalRegenerative MedicineMarket (Technology, Applications, Geography) - Industry Analysis, Trends, Opportunities and Forecast, 2013-2020", the global regenerative medicine market will reach $ 67.6 billion by 2020 from $16.4 billion in 2013, registering a CAGR of 23.2% during forecast period (2014 - 2020). [More]
Switching off a single gene converts human gastrointestinal cells into insulin-producing cells

Switching off a single gene converts human gastrointestinal cells into insulin-producing cells

By switching off a single gene, scientists at Columbia University's Naomi Berrie Diabetes Center have converted human gastrointestinal cells into insulin-producing cells, demonstrating in principle that a drug could retrain cells inside a person's GI tract to produce insulin. [More]
Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis in veterans: an interview with Milan Michael Karol, The Robert Packard Center for ALS Research at Johns Hopkins

Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis in veterans: an interview with Milan Michael Karol, The Robert Packard Center for ALS Research at Johns Hopkins

ALS stands for Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, better known as “Lou Gehrig’s Disease”. It is a progressive neurodegenerative disease characterized by the death of motor neurons in the brain and spinal cord. [More]
Study of mutations in cell's DNA help trace its life history

Study of mutations in cell's DNA help trace its life history

Researchers have developed new methods to trace the life history of individual cells back to their origins in the fertilised egg. By looking at the copy of the human genome present in healthy cells, they were able to build a picture of each cell's development from the early embryo on its journey to become part of an adult organ. [More]
Light-sensitive molecule enables noninvasive silencing of neurons

Light-sensitive molecule enables noninvasive silencing of neurons

Optogenetics, a technology that allows scientists to control brain activity by shining light on neurons, relies on light-sensitive proteins that can suppress or stimulate electrical signals within cells. This technique requires a light source to be implanted in the brain, where it can reach the cells to be controlled. [More]