News & Commentaries

Potential Seen to Tailor Acute Myeloid Leukemia Treatment

UW Medicine
Drug response screening of leukemia stem cells offers clues to relapse and suggests ways to improve patient-specific therapies

Seattle, WA, USA – Advances in rapid screening of leukemia cells for drug susceptibility and resistance are bringing scientists closer to patient-tailored treatment for acute myeloid leukemia (AML). Research on the drug responses of leukemia stem cells may reveal why some attempts to treat are not successful or why initially promising treatment results are not sustained.

Maintaining the Unlimited Potential of Stem Cells

salk news
Salk scientists discover new protein complex that keeps embryonic stem cells at stage of fullest potential, a key to regenerative medicine

La Jolla, CA, USA – Embryonic stem cells (ESCs) are the very definition of being full of potential, given that they can become any type of cell in the body. Once they start down any particular path toward a type of tissue, they lose their unlimited potential. Scientists have been trying to understand why and how this happens in order to create regenerative therapies that can, for example, coax a person’s own cells to replace damaged or diseased organs.

Platelets Grown from Stem Cells May be Alternative to Donated Platelets

AMH news
Manufactured platelets could one day provide a reliable, safe supply for transfusions

Washington, DC, USA – Researchers have developed a way to grow human platelets in the laboratory from stem cells derived from fat tissue. The achievement, reported today in the journal Blood, suggests manufactured platelets could eventually reduce the reliance on donated platelets to help patients with cancer and other disorders.

Next Step Towards Replacement Therapy in Type 1 Diabetes

helmholtz news

Neuherberg, Germany – Scientists have discovered the signals that determine the fate of immature cells in the pancreas. The research shows that they are very mobile and that their destiny is strongly influenced by their immediate environment. This breakthrough published in the journal Nature will facilitate the manufacturing of pancreatic islet cells from stem cells and might help combating type 1 diabetes.

Healthy Blood Stem Cells Have as Many DNA Mutations as Leukemic Cells

utrecht news
Tracing the developmental lineage tree of HSPCs

Utrecht, the Netherlands – Researchers from the Princess Máxima Center for Pediatric Oncology have shown that the number of mutations in healthy and leukemic blood stem cells does not differ. Rather the location of the mutations in the DNA is relevant. Using the mutation patterns in the hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells (HSPCs) the team was able to trace the developmental lineage tree of the cells.

Stem Cell Researchers Develop Promising Technique to Generate New Muscle Cells in Lab

UThealth news

Houston, TX, USA – To help patients with muscle disorders, scientists at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth) have engineered a new stem cell line to study the conversion of stem cells into muscle. Findings appeared in Cell Reports.

Citrate-Based Biomaterial Fuels Bone Healing With Less Rejection

pennstate news

University Park, PA, USA – A material based on a natural product of bones and citrus fruit, called citrate, provides the extra energy that stem cells need to form new bone tissue, according to a team of Penn State bioengineers. Their new understanding of the mechanism that allows citrate to aid in bone regeneration will help the researchers develop slow-release, biodegradable, citrate-releasing scaffolds to act as bone-growth templates to speed up healing in the body.

Proposed Cancer Treatment May Boost Lung Cancer Stem Cells, Study Warns

boston news

Boston, MA, USA – Epigenetic therapies – targeting enzymes that alter what genes are turned on or off in a cell – are of growing interest in oncology as a way to make cancers less aggressive or less malignant. But now, at least one epigenetic therapy that had looked promising for lung cancer appears to boost the cancer stem cells that are believed to drive tumors. A study published in Nature Communications also identifies a strategy that reduces these stem cells, curbing lung cancer in mice.