Volume 7.48 | Dec 5

ESC & iPSC News 7.48 December 5, 2012
ESC & iPSC News
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TOP STORY
H3K9 Methylation Is a Barrier during Somatic Cell Reprogramming into iPSCs
The authors showed that histone H3 lysine 9 (H3K9) methylation is the primary epigenetic determinant for the intermediate pre-induction of pluripotent stem cell (iPSC) state, and its removal leads to fully reprogrammed iPSCs. [Nat Genet] Abstract

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PUBLICATIONS (Ranked by impact factor of the journal)

Strategy for the Creation of Clinical Grade hESC Line Banks that HLA-Match a Target Population
Researchers described a pre-derivation embryo haplotyping strategy that they developed in order to maximize the efficiency and minimize the costs of establishing banks of clinical grade human embryonic stem cell (hESC) lines in which human leukocyte antigen (HLA) haplotypes match a significant proportion of the population. [EMBO Mol Med] Abstract

Identification of Oct4-Activating Compounds that Enhance Reprogramming Efficiency
To identify small molecules that enhance reprogramming efficiency, researchers performed a cell-based high-throughput screening of chemical libraries. [Proc Natl Acad Sci USA] Abstract

Recapitulation of Spinal Motor Neuron-Specific Disease Phenotypes in a Human Cell Model of Spinal Muscular Atrophy
Researchers developed a closely representative cell model of spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) by knocking down the disease-determining gene, survival motor neuron (SMN), in human embryonic stem cells (hESCs). Their study with this cell model demonstrated that knocking down of SMN does not interfere with neural induction or the initial specification of spinal motor neurons. [Cell Res] Abstract

An Efficient Non-Viral Method to Generate Integration-Free Human iPS Cells from Cord Blood and Peripheral Blood Cells
The authors recently reported the efficient generation of human induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) from adult fibroblasts using a combination of plasmids encoding OCT3/4, SOX2, KLF4, L-MYC, LIN28 and shRNA for TP53. They herein report a modified protocol enabling efficient iPSC induction from CD34+ cord blood cells and from peripheral blood isolated from healthy donors using these plasmid vectors. [Stem Cells] Abstract

Insulin Inhibits Cardiac Mesoderm, not Mesendoderm, Formation during Cardiac Differentiation of Human Pluripotent Stem Cells and Modulation of Canonical Wnt Signaling Can Rescue this Inhibition
Researchers showed that insulin and Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathways, as a network, coordinate to influence human pluripotent stem cell differentiation to cardiomyocytes, with the Wnt/β-catenin pathway dominant to the insulin pathway. [Stem Cells] Abstract

The RB Family Is Required for the Self-Renewal and Survival of Human Embryonic Stem Cells
Experiments indicated that a homeostatic level of RB activity is essential for the self-renewal and the survival of human embryonic stem cells. [Nat Commun] Abstract

Intrapatient Variations in Type 1 Diabetes-Specific iPS Cell Differentiation into Insulin-Producing Cells
From individual patients with type 1 diabetes, multiple human induced pluripotent stem (iPS) clones were produced and prospectively screened using a battery of developmental markers to assess respective differentiation propensity and proficiency in yielding functional insulin-producing progeny. [Mol Ther] Abstract

Human Induced Pluripotent Stem Cell-Derived Models to Investigate Human Cytomegalovirus Infection in Neural Cells
Investigators derived induced pluripotent stem cells from human adult fibroblasts and induced neural lineages to investigate their susceptibility to infection with human cytomegalovirus strain Ad169. [PLoS One] Full Article | Press Release

A Practical and Efficient Cellular Substrate for the Generation of Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells from Adults: Blood-Derived Endothelial Progenitor Cells
Scientists described the use of late-outgrowth endothelial progenitor cells (L-EPCs) as a cellular substrate for the generation of induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs). As a proof-of-principle for clinical applications they generated EPC-iPSCs from both healthy individuals and patients with heritable and idiopathic forms of pulmonary arterial hypertension. [Stem Cells Transl Med] Abstract | Press Release

In Vivo Differentiation Potential of Epiblast Stem Cells Revealed by Chimeric Embryo Formation
Researchers showed that epiblast stem cells derived either from postimplantation embryos or from embryonic stem cells in vitro readily generate chimeras when grafted to postimplantation embryos in whole embryo culture. [Cell Rep] Abstract | Graphical Abstract

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REVIEWS
Assessing the Risks of Genotoxicity in the Therapeutic Development of Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells
The authors discuss current reprogramming technologies particularly in the context of genotoxicity, and the consequences of these alternations for the potential applications of reprogrammed cells. In addition, current strategies of genetic modification of induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs), as well as applicable suicide strategies to control the risk of iPSC-based therapies are introduced. [Mol Ther] Abstract
INDUSTRY NEWS

ACT Announces Completion of Higher-Dosage Cohort in Both U.S. Clinical Trials
Advanced Cell Technology, Inc. (ACT) announced treatment of three additional patients in the company’s two U.S. trials using retinal pigment epithelial (RPE) cells derived from human embryonic stem cells (hESCs). All three patients were injected with 100,000 hESC-derived RPE cells and are recovering uneventfully. [Advanced Cell Technology, Inc.] Press Release

Roche and the Innovative Medicines Initiative Join Forces to Promote Use of Nobel Prize-Winning Stem Cell Technology to Enhance Drug Development
Roche and the Innovative Medicines Initiative announced the launch of StemBANCC, a new academic-industry partnership that unites ten pharmaceutical companies and 23 academic institutions. Initiated and coordinated by Roche and managed by Oxford University, StemBANCC aims to use human induced pluripotent stem cells as research tools for drug discovery with the goal of using this ground-breaking new technology to develop human disease models and enhance drug development. [Roche] Press Release

WiCell Teams with Agilent Technologies to Offer High-Resolution CGH+SNP Microarray Service
Agilent Technologies Inc. and WiCell announced that WiCell is now offering comparative genomic hybridization plus single nucleotide polymorphism microarray analysis using the Agilent SurePrint G3 Human Genome CGH+SNP Microarray. [WiCell] Press Release

POLICY NEWS

NIH Has No Plans to Bring Back Third Grant Submission
Quashing hopes raised by a recent news report, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) announced that it will not reverse a controversial policy that gives researchers only one chance to resubmit a rejected research grant proposal. [National Institutes of Health, United States] Press Release

France’s Young Researchers Protest ‘Precarious’ Contracts
Early-career researchers across France staged protests against a new national employment law aimed at reducing the number of public employees working on short-term contracts. The researchers say the new law is emptying French labs of young workers and bringing promising research careers to a standstill. [French National Research Agency, France] Press Release

Failed Summit Spares Research Bad News … For Now
European researchers can perhaps be thankful for one thing about the European Union budget negotiations: The participants were unable to strike a deal. The latest proposals for the innovation budget, which includes research and education funding, cut as much as 15% from the €164 billion proposed last year by the European Commission, the E.U. executive branch. [European Commission, European Union] Press Release

Mexican Scientists Pin Hopes on Incoming President
Enrique Peña Nieto will have his hands full when he becomes Mexico’s next president. But in his first year, Mexico’s research community is hoping that he will also put the country’s scientific house in order. To do that, he will need to boost science funding and re-energize Mexico’s scientific culture. [Mexican President, Mexico] Press Release

EVENTS

NEW CellTech2013
January 22-23, 2013
San Diego, United States

Visit
our events page to see a complete list of events in the ESC & iPSC community.

JOB OPPORTUNITIES

Product Quality Scientist (STEMCELL Technologies, Inc.)

Scientist – Endothelial Cell Research (STEMCELL Technologies, Inc.)

Research Technologist – Cell Separation (STEMCELL Technologies, Inc.)

Scientist or Engineer – hPSC Bioengineer (STEMCELL Technologies, Inc.)

Quality Control Analyst (STEMCELL Technologies, Inc.)

Stem Cell Researcher (BioTalentum Ltd.)

Postdoctoral Position – Tumor Stem Cells (Cancer Institute of New Jersey)

PhD Student – Biochemical Analysis of Human Embryonic Stem Cells Differentiation (Helmholtz Zentrum München)

Postdoctoral Position – Functional Genomics of ESCs & iPSCs (University of Cologne)

Postdoctoral Fellow – Stem Cell Genomics (University of Virginia)

Postdoctoral Position – Stem Cells and Epigenetics (Mount Sinai School of Medicine)

MS/PhD Assistantship – Stem Cell Research (Utah State University)

Postdoctoral Position – iPSC Research (University of Washington)


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