Volume 6.20 | May 24

ESC & iPSC News 6.20, May 24, 2011
     In this issue: Science News | Current Publications | Industry News | Policy News | Events
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Study of Stem Cell Diseases Advanced by New Technique
A rare genetic disease called dyskeratosis congenita can be mimicked through the study of undifferentiated induced pluripotent stem cells, according to new findings. [Press release from Stanford University School of Medicine discussing online prepublication in Nature]



Predicting the Fate of Personalized Cells Next Step Towards New Therapies, Study Suggests
Researchers looked at progenitors and found a way to potentially predict their fate. They base this on how histones are marked by other proteins. [Press release from the University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine discussing online prepublication in Science]

Human Brain’s Most Ubiquitous Cell Cultivated in Lab Dish
A group reports that it was able to direct embryonic and induced human stem cells to become astrocytes in the lab dish. [Press release from the University of Wisconsin-Madison discussing online prepublication in Nature Biotechnology]

Editing Scrambled Genes in Human Stem Cells May Help Realize the Promise of Stem Cell-Gene Therapy
Using mutated versions of the lamin A gene as an example to demonstrate the versatility of their virus-based approach, researchers successfully edited a diseased gene in patient-specific induced pluripotent stem cells as well as adult stem cells. [Press release from EurekAlert! discussing online prepublication in Cell Stem Cell]

Scientists Discover Switch to Speed Up Stem Cell Production to Facilitate Development of Treatments for Diseases
A team of scientists has shown how proteins involved in controlling genes work together to carry out their functions in stem cells and demonstrated for the very first time how they can change interaction partners to make other types of cells. [Press release from the Genome Institute of Singapore of the Agency for Science, Technology and Research discussing online prepublication in Stem Cells]

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CURRENT PUBLICATIONS (Ranked by Impact Factor of the Journal)

Telomere Shortening and Loss of Self-Renewal in Dyskeratosis Congenita Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells
Scientists show that even in the undifferentiated state, induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) from dyskeratosis congenita patients harbor the precise biochemical defects characteristic of each form of the disease and that the magnitude of the telomere maintenance defect in iPSCs correlates with clinical severity. [Nature]

Chromatin “Prepattern” and Histone Modifiers in a Fate Choice for Liver and Pancreas
Investigators isolated mouse embryonic endoderm cells and assessed histone modifications at regulatory elements of silent genes that are activated upon liver or pancreas fate choices. [Science]

Specification of Transplantable Astroglial Subtypes from Human Pluripotent Stem Cells
In this study, human pluripotent stem cells were directed to nearly uniform populations of immature astrocytes (>90% S100β+ and GFAP+) in large quantities. [Nat Biotechnol]

Targeted Gene Correction of Laminopathy-Associated LMNA Mutations in Patient-Specific iPSCs
Researchers show that helper-dependent adenoviral vectors provide a highly efficient and safe method for correcting mutations in large genomic regions in human induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) and can also be effective in adult human mesenchymal stem cells. [Cell Stem Cell]

LSD1 Regulates the Balance Between Self-Renewal and Differentiation in Human Embryonic Stem Cells
Scientists identify LSD1 (lysine-specific demethylase 1; also known as KDM1A and AOF2) as a key histone modifier that participates in the maintenance of pluripotency through the regulation of bivalent domains, a chromatin environment present at the regulatory regions of developmental genes that contains both H3K4 di/trimethylation and H3K27 trimethylation marks. [Nat Cell Biol]

Genome-Wide Regulation of 5hmC, 5mC, and Gene Expression by Tet1 Hydroxylase in Mouse Embryonic Stem Cells
Data suggest that Tet1 controls DNA methylation both by binding to CpG-rich regions to prevent unwanted DNA methyltransferase activity, and by converting 5 position of cytosine to 5-hydroxymethylcytosine through hydroxylase activity. [Mol Cell]

Doublesex and Mab-3–Related Transcription Factor 5 Promotes Midbrain Dopaminergic Identity in Pluripotent Stem Cells by Enforcing a Ventral-Medial Progenitor Fate
Researchers report the identification of the zinc finger-like doublesex and mab-3–related transcription factor 5 as a marker for mammalian ventral-medial mesencephalic neuroepithelium that give rise to dopamine neurons. [Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A]

Polycomb Repressive Complex 2 Is Necessary for the Normal Site-Specific O-GlcNAc Distribution in Mouse Embryonic Stem Cells
Scientists unambiguously identify over 60 nuclear proteins as O-GlcNAcylated, several of which are crucial for mouse ESC cell maintenance. [Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A]

Conversion of Sox17 into a Pluripotency Reprogramming Factor by Reengineering Its Association with Oct4 on DNA
Investigators show that Sox2 and Sox17 exhibit inverse heterodimerization preferences with Oct4 on the canonical versus a newly identified compressed sox/oct motif. [Stem Cells]


Coulter Foundation and Stanford Establish $20 Million Endowment for Bioengineering Projects to Fill Medical Needs
A $20 million endowment to support the translation of ideas that address unmet medical needs into treatments and devices that improve human health has been established in the Stanford University Department of Bioengineering, with support from the Wallace H. Coulter Foundation and the university. [Stanford University School of Medicine Press Release]

Monash Leads Australia-India Research Collaboration
Monash projects have been awarded almost a quarter of the $5 million in available funding through Round 5 of the Australia-India Strategic Research Fund. [Monash University Press Release]


Leopoldina Makes Recommendations to the G8 Heads of State and Government
Together with the national science academies of the other G8 states, the German National Academy of Sciences Leopoldina has prepared two statements for the G8 states in the run-up to the G8 Summit of Heads of State and Government. [German National Academy of Sciences Leopoldina, Germany]

Wellcome Trust Calls for Clearer Vision for NHS Reform
The government’s proposed reforms to the National Health Service (NHS) lack a clear vision of what a 21st-century health service should deliver, according to the Director of the Wellcome Trust, Sir Mark Walport. Furthermore, he argues, the reforms overlook the potential of medical research to translate into better care for patients and contribute to the nation’s economic recovery. [Wellcome Trust, United Kingdom]

European Medicines Agency Discusses Pharmacovigilance with French General Inspectorate of Social Affairs
On Tuesday 17 May, the European Medicines Agency hosted a meeting with the French General Inspectorate of Social Affairs to discuss the current system of the safety monitoring of medicines in the European Union. [European Medicines Agency, United Kingdom]

Report Published from Workshop on Ethics and GCP in Clinical Trials Outside the European Union
The European Medicines Agency published a meeting report reflecting discussions and comments made on its draft reflection paper on ethical and good-clinical-practice (GCP) aspects of clinical trials of medicinal products for human use conducted in third countries and submitted in marketing authorization applications to the European Medicines Agency. [European Medicines Agency, United Kingdom]

Office of Biotechnology Activities, Office of Science Policy, Office of the Director; Notice of Meeting (FR Doc No: 2011-12269) [National Institutes of Health, United States]

Office of the Director, National Institutes of Health; Notice of Meeting (FR Doc No: 2011-12046) [National Institutes of Health, United States]

Center for Scientific Review; Notice of Closed Meetings (FR Doc No: 2011-12267) [National Institutes of Health, United States]

Center for Scientific Review; Notice of Closed Meetings (FR Doc No: 2011-12049) [National Institutes of Health, United States]

Center for Scientific Review; Amended Notice of Meeting (FR Doc No: 2011-12465) [National Institutes of Health, United States]

National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering; Notice of Closed Meeting (FR Doc No: 2011-12230) [National Institutes of Health, United States]

Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request; NCI Cancer Genetics Services Directory Web-Based Application Form and Update Mailer (FR Doc No: 2011-12047) [National Institutes of Health, United States]

Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request; A Generic Submission for Formative Research, Pre-Testing, Stakeholder Measures and Advocate Forms at NCI (FR Doc No: 2011-12375) [National Institutes of Health, United States]


NEW Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory – Stem Cell Biology
September 20-24, 2011
Cold Spring Harbor, United States

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


Postdoc in Human Embryonic Stem Cell Bioprocessing (School of Biotechnology at the Royal Institute of Technology)

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

Postdoctoral Fellow (Stanford University)

Postdoctoral Research Fellow (University of Ottawa)

Postdoctoral Positions in Epigenomics (Umeå University)

Postdoc in Human Embryonic Stem Cell Bioprocessing (School of Biotechnology at the Royal Institute of Technology)

Postdoctoral Position (Spanish National Cancer Center)

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