UCI receives 5-year, $5 million CIRM award for training of diverse researchers

The University of California, Irvine has received a five-year, $5 million award from the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine to support a comprehensive doctoral, postdoctoral and clinical researcher training program to prepare the current and next generation of leaders in stem cell biology, gene therapy and regenerative medicine.

UCI-led team develops transplant biomaterial that doesn’t trigger immune response

Irvine, Calif., June 3, 2021 — A multidisciplinary research team led by Jonathan Lakey, Ph.D., professor of surgery and biomedical engineering at the University of California, Irvine, has developed a biomaterial for pancreatic islet transplants that doesn’t trigger the body’s immune response. Based on stem cell technology, hybrid alginate offers a possible long-term treatment for Type 1 diabetes, an autoimmune reaction that destroys pancreatic islets’ beta cells, which regulate blood glucose levels.

Research News Tip Sheet: Story Ideas from Johns Hopkins Medicine

During the COVID-19 pandemic, Johns Hopkins Medicine Media Relations is focused on disseminating current, accurate and useful information to the public via the media. As part of that effort, we are distributing our “COVID-19 Tip Sheet: Story Ideas from Johns Hopkins” every other Wednesday.

Targeting microRNAs could unmask hidden vulnerability in breast cancer stem cells

Researchers in Italy have identified a pair of microRNA molecules that help maintain a population of cancerous stem cells that drive the growth of breast cancers and initiate tumor relapse after treatment. The study, which will be published April 2 in the Journal of Cell Biology (JCB), reveals that targeting these microRNAs makes cancer stem cells more susceptible to some chemotherapies and could potentially improve the prognosis of patients with aggressive forms of breast cancer.

Placental Stem Cells Show Promise for Treating Preemies’ Necrotizing Enterocolitis

Article title: Human placental-derived stem cell therapy ameliorates experimental necrotizing enterocolitis Authors: Victoria G. Weis, Anna C. Deal, Gehad Mekky, Cara Clouse, Michaela Gaffley, Emily Whitaker, Cole B. Peeler, Jared A. Weis, Marshall Z. Schwartz, Anthony Atala From the authors:…

Weizmann Institute Scientists Grow Advanced Mouse Embryos Outside the Uterus

In a first, the Weizmann Institute’s Prof. Jacob Hanna and his group have grown mouse embryos in an artificial uterus. The feat allows scientists to study the early stages of development, with potential implications that include understanding why implantations fail and the gestational conditions behind developmental disorders, as well as reduced need for laboratory animals.

Human Lung and Brain Organoids Respond Differently to SARS-CoV-2 Infection in Lab Tests

UC San Diego School of Medicine researchers are using stem cell-derived organoids to study how SARS-CoV-2 interacts with various organ systems. Their findings may help explain the wide variety in COVID-19 symptoms and aid the search for therapies.

Evan Snyder named Fellow of the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering

The American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering (AIMBE) has elected to its College of Fellows Evan Y. Snyder, M.D., Ph.D., professor and founding director of the Center for Stem Cells and Regenerative Medicine at Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute. Snyder was nominated, reviewed, and elected by his peers and members of the College of Fellows for his seminal contributions to regenerative medicine.

Mount Sinai Researchers Identify Mechanisms That Are Essential for Proper Skin Development

Mount Sinai researchers have discovered that Polycomb complexes, groups of proteins that maintain gene expression patterns, are essential for proper skin development, according to a paper published in Genes & Development on February 18.

University of Miami Miller School of Medicine Leads Groundbreaking Trial for COVID -19 Treatment

University of Miami Miller School of Medicine researchers led a unique and groundbreaking randomized controlled trial showing umbilical cord derived mesenchymal stem cell infusions safely reduce risk of death and quicken time to recovery for the severest COVID-19 patients, according to results published in STEM CELLS Translational Medicine in January 2021.

Advances in Stem Cell Science and Regenerative Medicine Highlighted in New Regenerative Medicine Essentials Course Co-Located with 2021 World Stem Cell Summit

Leaders in stem cell science and regenerative medicine will combine two separate courses into one in June 2021.

World’s first: Drug guides stem cells to desired location, improving their ability to heal

Scientists at Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute have created a drug that can lure stem cells to damaged tissue and improve treatment efficacy—a scientific first and major advance for the field of regenerative medicine. The discovery, published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), could improve current stem cell therapies designed to treat such neurological disorders as spinal cord injury, stroke, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and other neurodegenerative disorders; and expand their use to new conditions, such as heart disease or arthritis.

Could a tiny fish hold the key to curing blindness?

Imagine this: A patient learns that they are losing their sight because an eye disease has damaged crucial cells in their retina. Then, under the care of their doctor, they simply grow some new retinal cells, restoring their vision.

Although science hasn’t yet delivered this happy ending, researchers are working on it – with help from the humble zebrafish. When a zebrafish loses its retinal cells, it grows new ones. This observation has encouraged scientists to try hacking the zebrafish’s innate regenerative capacity to learn how to treat human disease. That is why among the National Eye Institute’s 1,200 active research projects, nearly 80 incorporate zebrafish.

Coaxing single stem cells into specialized cells

Researchers at the University of Illinois Chicago have developed a unique method for precisely controlling the deposition of hydrogel, which is made of water-soluble polymers commonly used to support cells in experiments or for therapeutic purposes. The researchers noticed that their technique – which allows for the encapsulation of a single cell within a minute hydrogel droplet – can be used to coax bone marrow stem cells into specialized cells.

New Collection of Rett Syndrome Stem Cells Available from Coriell Institute for Medical Research

The Coriell Institute for Medical Research has added a new collection of stem cells to its biobank offerings. The new collection is a result of a collaboration between Coriell and the Rett Syndrome Research Trust (RSRT) and consists of 10 lines of human induced pluripotent stem cells created from blood donated by individuals with Rett syndrome.

Communication between Skeletal Muscle Stem Cells and Fibers Supports Muscle Growth in Mice

A new study suggests that communication between skeletal muscle cells and muscle fibers promotes muscle growth. Adult muscle stem cells, called satellite cells, release extracellular vesicles that are delivered to muscle fibers responsible for contraction, to promote this muscle growth. The first-of-its-kind study is published ahead of print in the journal Function.

New Clues from Fruit Flies about the Critical Role of Sex Hormones in Stem Cell Control

In one of the first studies addressing the role of sex hormones’ impact on stem cells in the gut, scientists outline new insights showing how a steroidal sex hormone that is structurally and functionally similar to human steroid hormones drastically alters the way intestinal stem cells behave, ultimately affecting the overarching structure and function of this critical organ. The authors found that ecdysone, a steroid hormone produced by fruit flies, stimulates intestinal stem cell growth and causes the gut of the female fruit fly to grow in size, as well as other critical changes.

Low-intensity Exercise with Blood Flow Restriction May Improve Muscle Health

Article title: Blood flow restriction exercise stimulates mobilization of hematopoietic stem/progenitor cells and increases the circulating ACE2 levels in healthy adults Authors: Shrinidh Joshi, Sean Mahoney, Jesmin Jahan, Logan Pitts, Kyle J. Hackney, Yagna P.R. Jarajapu From the authors: “This study…