Volume 6.03 | Jan 26

ESC & iPSC News 6.03, January 26, 2011.
In this issue:  Science News |  Current Publications |  Industry News |  Policy News |  Events
Subscribe  |  Unsubscribe

TOP STORY

Researchers Eliminate Major Roadblock in Regenerative Medicine 

A team of stem cell biologists and engineers has identified an optimal combination and concentration of small-molecule inhibitors to support the long-term quality and maintenance of human embryonic stem cells in feeder-free and serum-free conditions. [Press release from the University of California, Los Angeles discussing online prepublication in Nature Communications]

mTeSR1Webinar_645x110

SPECIAL FEATURE

A Very Sad Loss – Stem Cell Pioneer Ernest A. McCulloch Passes Away
It is with great sadness that scientists honor the life and extraordinary contributions of Dr. Ernest “Bun” McCulloch who passed away on Wednesday, January 19th, 2011. Dr. McCulloch, along with his close friend and colleague, Dr. James Till, was a pioneer in the field of stem cell research. [Canadian Stem Cell Foundation Press Release]

Facebook Cell Therapy News is now on Facebook. Join us!

Twitter Follow us on Twitter! @ESC_iPSC_News

Interested in recruiting talented individuals? Post your career opportunities in ESC & iPSC News at no cost. Contact us at [email protected]

SCIENCE NEWS

Uncovering the Trail Behind Growing Too Old, Too Soon
Scientists have produced the world’s first human cell model of progeria. The team used a novel technique of deriving induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells from cells of human progeria patients. The researchers used their iPS cells to identify two types of cells — mesenchymal stem cells and vascular smooth muscle cells — that were particularly adversely affected by progeria. [Press release from the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR) discussing online prepublication in Cell Stem Cell]

Hypoxia Induces Multipotency in Skin Cells, Proteins Produced Trigger Cancer Stem Cell Death
Scientists demonstrated that, in both monolayer and suspension cultures under hypoxic conditions, normal human newborn fibroblasts become multipotent cells and express key pluripotent stem cell markers including Oct4, Sox2 and Nanog as well as a number of tissue and germ layer-specific stem cell markers, such as Brachyury, Gata4, alpha-fetoprotein, and Pax6. [Press release from Histogen, Inc. discussing research presented at the 5th Annual Stem Cells and Regenerative Medicine World Congress]

PluripotentWallchart_645x110

CURRENT PUBLICATIONS (Ranked by Impact Factor of the Journal)

A Human iPSC Model of Hutchinson Gilford Progeria Reveals Vascular Smooth Muscle and Mesenchymal Stem Cell Defects
To understand the underlying molecular pathology of Hutchinson-Gilford Progeria syndrome, researchers derived induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) from HGPS dermal fibroblasts. [Cell Stem Cell]

Oct4 Kinetics Predict Cell Lineage Patterning in the Early Mammalian Embryo
Findings identify Oct4 kinetics, rather than differences in total transcription factor expression levels, as a predictive measure of developmental cell lineage patterning in the early mouse embryo. [Nat Cell Biol]

Recapitulation of the Embryonic Cardiovascular Progenitor Cell Niche
The three-dimensionality of the structures described herein increased mouse embryonic stem cell differentiation into cardiovascular progenitor cells when compared to 2D control cultures, which was further enhanced by incorporation of collagen IV into the substrates. [Biomaterials]

Dnmt3a1 Upregulates Transcription of Distinct Genes and Targets Chromosomal Gene Clusters for Epigenetic Silencing in Mouse Embryonic Stem Cells
Findings suggest that Dnmt3a1 positively affects transcription of specific genes at the promoter level, and targets chromosomal domains to epigenetically silence gene clusters in mouse embryonic stem cells. [Mol Cell Biol]

HLA-G Expression in Human Embryonic Stem Cells and Preimplantation Embryos
Researchers investigated HLA-G mRNA and protein expression in human embryonic stem cells derived from the inner cell mass of blastocysts. [J Immunol]

Fibroblasts Support Functional Integration of Purified Embryonic Stem Cell-Derived Cardiomyocytes into Avital Myocardial Tissue
The aim of this study was to investigate whether murine embryonic fibroblasts support the functional integration of purified embryonic stem cell-derived cardiomyocytes. [Stem Cells Dev]

Gene Targeting and Subsequent Site-Specific Transgenesis at the Beta-actin (ACTB) Locus in Common Marmoset Embryonic Stem Cells
To establish efficient and stable genetic modifications in common marmoset embryonic stem (cmES) cells, researchers inserted the enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP) gene with heterotypic lox sites into the beta-actin (ACTB) locus of the cmES cells using gene targeting. [Stem Cells Dev]

Establishment of a Porcine Oct-4 Promoter-Driven EGFP Reporter System for Monitoring Pluripotency of Porcine Stem Cells
This work lays a foundation that can be used to generate a pig strain with an Oct4-EGFP reporter system, which would be greatly helpful in studying the differentiating and reprogramming mechanisms of pig embryos. [Cell Reprogram]

An Optimized Small Molecule Inhibitor Cocktail Supports Long-Term Maintenance of Human Embryonic Stem Cells
Researchers identify, using a feedback system control scheme, a unique combination of three small molecule inhibitors that enables the maintenance of human embryonic stem cells on a fibronectin-coated surface through single cell passaging. [Nat Commun]

INDUSTRY NEWS

International Society for Cellular Therapy (ISCT) Launches Inaugural Cell Therapy Commercial Development Focus Group on Peripheral Vascular Disease
In keeping with its commitment to connect industry, regulatory experts, therapeutic societies and translational centers to advance emerging cellular therapies, ISCT announced its first commercial development focus group addressing Cell Therapies for Peripheral Vascular Disease. [Reuters]

Stanford Joins First Embryonic-Stem Cell Therapy Clinical Trial
The first clinical trial of cells derived from human embryonic stem cells began in October 2010 in a paralyzed patient at the Shepherd Center in Atlanta. Stanford University School of Medicine and Santa Clara Valley Medical Center became the third site to participate in the trial, which will enroll up to 10 patients with spinal cord injuries at up to seven institutions nationwide. [Stanford University School of Medicine Press Release]

NeoStem Acquires Progenitor Cell Therapy
NeoStem, Inc. and Progenitor Cell Therapy LLC announced the closing of their previously announced merger transaction. [NeoStem, Inc. Press Release]

Wisconsin Stem Cell Pioneer Wins Faisal International Prize
James Thomson, director of regenerative biology at the Morgridge Institute for Research and a University of Wisconsin-Madison researcher since 1994, learned this week that he is this year’s co-winner of the prestigious King Faisal International Prize in Medicine. [Morgridge Institute for Research Press Release]

CIRM Appoints National Expert on Drug Development and Regulation as Vice President, Research and Development
The California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM) has named Ellen Feigal, M.D., as its first Vice President for Research and Development effective January 31. [California Institute for Regenerative Medicine Press Release]



POLICY NEWS

Consensus Statement: Statement on Policies and Practices Governing Data and Materials Sharing and Intellectual Property in Stem Cell Science
Tension is increasing between fairly new and pervasive policies and practices governing data and materials sharing and intellectual property in science, and norms of openness and free exchange. While intellectual property rights can bring private investment into areas underfunded by governments and help bridge gaps between scientific invention or discovery and useful technologies, some new and emerging policies and practices risk slowing innovation in research and development and skewing attention toward large markets, to the disadvantage of small markets, such as those for rare diseases and in some emerging economies. [Hinxton Group]

Fourth Circuit Cites Judicial Restraint, Affirms NIH Stem Cell Research Funding
The United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit has affirmed a decision by federal district court Judge Alexander Williams, dismissing a lawsuit challenging federal funding of embryonic stem cell research. [Court of Appeals, United States]

U.K. Scientists: Budget Threatens Facilities
Heads of the United Kingdom’s research councils warned politicians that delaying capital investments due to funding cuts will harm the country’s scientific standing. “It will in principle damage our international competitiveness,” said Keith Mason, chief executive of the Science and Technology Facilities Council. [House of Commons Science and Technology Select Committee, United Kingdom]

Office of Biotechnology Activities, Office of Science Policy, Office of the Director; Notice of Meeting (FR Doc. 2011-1244) [National Institutes of Health, United States]

National Human Genome Research Institute; Notice of Closed Meeting (FR Doc. 2011-1247) [National Institutes of Health, United States]
 
Center for Scientific Review; Notice of Closed Meetings (FR Doc. 2011-1252) [National Institutes of Health, United States]
 
National Center for Research Resources; Notice of Closed Meetings (FR Doc. 2011-1327) [National Institutes of Health, United States]

 Learn more about ESC & iPSC News:  Archives |  Events |  Subscribe |  Contact Us