Volume 9.22 | Jun 11

ESC & iPSC News 9.22 June 11, 2014
ESC & iPSC News
     In this issue: Publications | Reviews | Industry News | Policy News | Events | Jobs
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TOP STORY
Stem Cells Hold Keys to Body’s Plan
Researchers discovered landmarks within pluripotent stem cells that guide how they develop to serve different purposes within the body. This breakthrough offers promise that scientists eventually will be able to direct stem cells in ways that prevent disease or repair damage from injury or illness. [Press release from Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine discussing online prepublication in Cell Stem Cell]
Press Release | Abstract | Graphical Abstract
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PUBLICATIONS (Ranked by impact factor of the journal)
Directed Network Wiring Identifies a Key Protein Interaction in Embryonic Stem Cell Differentiation
Researchers designed variants of the Grb2 SH2 domain whose specificity is highly biased toward a single phosphotyrosine (pY) motif among many potential pYXNX Grb2-binding sites. [Mol Cell]
Abstract | Graphical Abstract | Press Release

Generation of Three-Dimensional Retinal Tissue with Functional Photoreceptors from Human iPSCs
Scientists report that human induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) can, in a highly autonomous manner, recapitulate spatiotemporally each of the main steps of retinal development observed in vivo and form three-dimensional retinal cups that contain all major retinal cell types arranged in their proper layers. [Nat Commun] Abstract | Press Release

iPSC-Derived Neurons from GBA1-Associated Parkinson’s Disease Patients Show Autophagic Defects and Impaired Calcium Homeostasis
Researchers generated induced pluripotent stem cells from subjects with Gaucher’s disease and Parkinson’s disease harboring acid β-glucocerebrosidase (GBA1) mutations, and differentiate them into midbrain dopaminergic neurons followed by enrichment using fluorescence-activated cell sorting. [Nat Commun] Abstract

Seamless Modification of Wild-Type Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells to the Natural CCR5Δ32 Mutation Confers Resistance to HIV Infection
Researchers generated induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) homozygous for the naturally occurring C-C chemokine receptor type 5 gene with 32-bp deletions (CR5Δ32) mutation through genome editing of wild-type iPSCs using a combination of transcription activator-like effector nucleases or RNA-guided clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats-Cas9 together with the piggyBac technology. [Proc Natl Acad Sci USA] Abstract | Press Release

Genetic Background Drives Transcriptional Variation in Human Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells
To explore the basis of cell line heterogeneity investigators generated 25 induced pluripotent stem cell lines under normalized conditions from the same set of somatic tissues across a number of donors. [PLoS Genet]
Full Article

Nrf2, a Regulator of the Proteasome, Controls Self-Renewal and Pluripotency in Human Embryonic Stem Cells
Scientists showed that nuclear factor, erythroid 2-like 2 (Nrf2) acts as a key pluripotency gene and a regulator of proteasome activity in human embryonic stem cells (hESCs). Nrf2 expression is highly enriched in hESCs and dramatically decreases upon differentiation. [Stem Cells] Abstract

B-Cell Receptor Associated Protein 31 Regulates Human Embryonic Stem Cell Adhesion, Stemness, and Survival via Control of Epithelial Cell Adhesion Molecule
Investigators found that 297-D4 antigen was localized to pluripotent human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) and downregulated during early differentiation of hESCs, and identified that the antigen target of 297-D4 was B-cell receptor associated protein 31 on the hESC-surface. [Stem Cells] Abstract

A Novel Strategy for Enrichment and Isolation of Osteoprogenitor Cells from Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells Based on Surface Marker Combination
Researchers developed a new method to stimulate osteogenic differentiation in tissue-nonspecific alkaline phosphatase-positive cells liberated from human induced pluripotent stem cells-derived embryoid bodies with 14 days long TGF-β/IGF-1/FGF-2 treatment. [PLoS One] Full Article

Efficient Generation of Integration-Free Human Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells from Keratinocytes by Simple Transfection of Episomal Vectors
The author describe an efficient, simple-to-use, and cost-effective method for generating integration-free human induced pluripotent stem cells from keratinocytes. Their improved method using lipid-mediated transfection achieved a reprogramming efficiency of ~0.14% on average. [Stem Cells Transl Med] Abstract

MOF-Associated Complexes Have Overlapping and Unique Roles in Regulating Pluripotency in Embryonic Stem Cells and during Differentiation
Researchers’ genome-wide analysis showed that MSL and NSL bind to specific and common sets of expressed genes, NSL binds exclusively at promoters, while MSL binds in gene bodies. Nsl1 regulates proliferation and cellular homeostasis of mouse embryonic stem cells. [eLife] Abstract | Full Article

Human ESC-Derived MSCs Outperform Bone Marrow MSCs in the Treatment of an EAE Model of Multiple Sclerosis
Researchers showed that mesenchymal stem cells derived from human embryonic stem cells (hES-MSCs) significantly reduce clinical symptoms and prevent neuronal demyelination in a mouse experimental autoimmune encephalitis (EAE) model of MS, and that the EAE disease-modifying effect of hES-MSCs is significantly greater than that of human bone-marrow-derived MSCs. [Stem Cells Rep] Full Article | Press Release

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REVIEWS
A Promising Approach to iPSC-Based Cell Therapy for Diabetic Wound Treatment: Direct Lineage Reprogramming
The authors review recent advances in induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSC) technology and summarize the research on the generation of patient-specific induced cell types using direct lineage conversion. [Mol Cell Endocrinol] Abstract

Embryonic Toxicity of Nanoparticles
The authors summarize the knowledge on the effects of various nanomaterials on embryonic development. A comprehensive collection of significant experimental nanotoxicity data is presented, which also indicate how the toxic effect of nanoparticles can be mediated and modulated with respect to possible effective protection strategies. [Cells Tissues Organs] Abstract

Visit our reviews page to see a complete list of reviews in the ESC & iPSC research field.

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INDUSTRY NEWS
UCLA Stem Cell Researcher Receives $5.1 Million Award from State Agency
California’s state stem cell agency has given UCLA’s Dr. John Chute a Research Leadership Award worth $5.1 million to support his research aimed at creating new stem cell therapies for use in medical practice. [UCLA] Press Release

Orgenesis Awarded Maryland Stem Cell Research Fund Grant
Orgenesis Inc., a development-stage company with a novel therapeutic technology dedicated to converting a patient’s own liver cells into functioning insulin-producing cells as a treatment for diabetes, announced that its’ wholly owned subsidiary in Maryland, Orgenesis Maryland, Inc., has been awarded a grant of $420,000 from the Maryland Stem Cell Research Fund. [Orgenesis Inc.] Press Release

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POLICY NEWS
A $4.5 Billion Price Tag for the BRAIN Initiative?
After more than a year of meetings and deliberations, a National Institutes of Health-convened working group has fleshed out some the goals and aspirations of Brain Research through Advancing Innovative Neurotechnologies (BRAIN) and tried to offer a more realistic appraisal of the funding needed: $4.5 billion over the course of a decade, or roughly quadruple the project’s currently planned budget. [ScienceInsider] Editorial

U.S. Federal Court Dismisses Challenge to Stem Cell Patent
A U.S. federal appeals court has rejected an attempt to strike down a long-contested stem cell patent held by the Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation. Consumer Watchdog (CW) had hoped to invalidate the patent, which it says puts a burden on California’s taxpayer-funded research by requiring licensing agreements to use the cells, but the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit ruled that CW isn’t involved in work on human embryonic stem cells and, thus, can’t challenge the patent in court. [ScienceInsider] Editorial

Last Remaining Support for Controversial Stem-Cell Papers Collapses
The retraction of two controversial papers that promised a simple way to create embryonic-like stem cells seems to be imminent after the lead author unexpectedly gave her full consent. Haruko Obokata, of the RIKEN Center for Developmental Biology in Kobe, Japan, had been the last obstacle to the retraction of both papers. [Nature News] Editorial

Output Drops at World’s Largest Open-Access Journal
The number of papers published by the world’s largest open-access journal, PLoS One, has plummeted over the past few months after rising fairly steadily for years, notes a scholarly publishing blogger. Phil Davis suggests the closely watched PLoS One may have become a less attractive option for scientists as its impact factor has fallen and other open-access publishers have come on the scene. [ScienceInsider] Editorial

NSF Counsel Lashes Out at Scientists Asking about Protections for Rotators
The National Science Foundation’s (NSF’s) top lawyer has rebuked a group of U.S. scientists who asked for an explanation of its policies governing temporary workers. The response appears to have widened a rift between that community and NSF over a program designed to keep the agency on the cutting edge of research. [ScienceInsider] Editorial
 
EVENTS
NEW World Alliance Forum in San Francisco – The Impact of Regenerative Medicine 2014
November 6-7, 2014
San Francisco, United States

NEW The World Stem Cell Summit 2014
December 3-5, 2014
San Antonio, United States

Visit our events page to see a complete list of events in the ESC & iPSC community.
 
JOB OPPORTUNITIES
NEW Postdoctoral Position – Studying RNA and Heart Biology Using Human Stem Cells (University of Pittsburgh)

Postdoctoral Position – Functional Characterization of Neurons Derived from Human Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells (Radboud University Medical Center)

Postdoctoral Researcher – Hematopoietic Stem Cells as Well as on Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells (KU Leuven)

Postdoctoral Position – Epigenetics and Stem Cell Biology (Max Planck Institute for Heart and Lung Research)

PhD Studentship – Molecular Mechanism of Asymmetric Stem Cell Division (King’s College London)

Postdoctoral Fellows – Reproductive Sciences/Embryonic Development (University of Maryland)

Postdoctoral Position – Epigenetics, Stem Cell Biology and Heart Development (Max Planck Institute for Heart and Lung Research)

Postdoctoral Associate – Hematopoietic Differentiation (Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine)

Postdoctoral Position – Basic and Translational Neuroscience/Stem Cell Research (University of California, Davis)

Scientist – Immunology/Cell Separation (STEMCELL Technologies Inc.)

Research Associate – Cell Separation (STEMCELL Technologies Inc.)

Research Technologist – Pluripotent Stem Cells (STEMCELL Technologies Inc.)

Research Technologist – PSC Biology and Bioengineering (STEMCELL Technologies Inc.)


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