News & Commentaries

Mini-Organs Grown from Patients’ Own Tissue Could Offer Treatment Hope for Children with Intestinal Failure

Stembook: Mini-Organs Grown from Patients’ Own Tissue Could Offer Treatment Hope for Children with Intestinal Failure

London, UK –Pioneering scientists at the Francis Crick Institute, Great Ormond Street Hospital (GOSH) and UCL Great Ormond Street Institute of Child Health (ICH) have grown human intestinal grafts using stem cells from patient tissue that could one day lead to personalised transplants for children with intestinal failure, according to a study published in Nature Medicine.

Coaxing Single Stem Cells into Specialized Cells

Stembook: Coaxing Single Stem Cells into Specialized Cells

Chicago, IL, USA – Researchers at the University of Illinois Chicago have developed a unique method for precisely controlling the deposition of hydrogel, which is made of water-soluble polymers commonly used to support cells in experiments or for therapeutic purposes. Hydrogel mimics the extracellular matrix – the natural environment of cells in the body

A Village of Cancer Cells

Stembook: A Village of Cancer Cells
UC researchers pinpoint hierarchy of breast cancer cells as potential cause for treatment resistance

Cincinnati, OH, USA – You might have heard the old proverb, “It takes a village to raise a child.” University of Cincinnati instructor Syn Yeo, PhD, thinks the same analogy applies when it comes to cells and the growth of cancer, particularly breast cancer.

Stem Cells Can Repair Parkinson’s-damaged Circuits in Mouse Brains

Stembook: Stem Cells Can Repair Parkinson’s-damaged Circuits in Mouse Brains

Madison, WI, USA – The mature brain is infamously bad at repairing itself following damage like that caused by trauma or strokes, or from degenerative diseases like Parkinson’s. Stem cells, which are endlessly adaptable, have offered the promise of better neural repair. But the brain’s precisely tuned complexity has stymied the development of clinical treatments.

A New Molecular Guardian of Intestinal Stem Cells

Stembook: A New Molecular Guardian of Intestinal Stem Cells

Tokyo, Japan – Intestinal stem cells keep a fine balance between two potential forms: remaining as stem cells, or developing into intestinal epithelial cells. In a new study, researchers from Tokyo Medical and Dental University (TMDU) discovered a novel molecular mechanism that regulates this balance and preserves the stemness of intestinal stem cells—that is, their ability to develop into any intestinal epithelial cell type.

Becoming A Nerve Cell: Timing Is Of The Essence

Stembook: Becoming A Nerve Cell: Timing Is Of The Essence

Gent, Belgium – Mitochondria are small organelles that provide the energy critical for each cell in our body, in particular in the high fuel-consuming brain. In this week’s edition of Science, a Belgian team of researchers led by Pierre Vanderhaeghen (VIB-KU Leuven, ULB) finds that mitochondria also regulate a key event during brain development: how neural stem cells become nerve cells. Mitochondria influence this cell fate switch during a precise period that is twice as long in humans compared to mice. The seminal findings highlight an unexpected function for mitochondria that may help explain how humans developed a bigger brain during evolution, and how mitochondrial defects lead to neurodevelopmental diseases. the study was published in Science.

Implanted Neural Stem Cell Grafts Show Functionality in Spinal Cord Injuries

Stembook: Implanted Neural Stem Cell Grafts Show Functionality in Spinal Cord Injuries

San Diego, CA,USA – Using stem cells to restore lost functions due to spinal cord injury (SCI) has long been an ambition of scientists and doctors. Nearly 18,000 people in the United States suffer SCIs each year, with another 294,000 persons living with an SCI, usually involving some degree of permanent paralysis or diminished physical function, such as bladder control or difficulty breathing.

UMSOM Researchers Discover Stem Cells in the Optic Nerve that Enable Preservation of Vision

Stembook: UMSOM Researchers Discover Stem Cells in the Optic Nerve that Enable Preservation of Vision
Finding May Lead to New Therapeutic Strategy for Disorders Causing Blindness

Baltimore, MD, USA – Researchers at the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) have for the first time identified stem cells in the region of the optic nerve, which transmits signals from the eye to the brain. The finding, published this week in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), presents a new theory on why the most common form of glaucoma may develop and provides potential new ways to treat a leading cause of blindness in American adults.

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