CURRENT STEM CELL NEWS

1. Real-time monitoring of bioengineered skeletal muscle in live mice shows positive results

Biomedical engineers from Duke University have engineered muscle using contractile muscle fibers and satellite cells which are muscle stem cells. The bioengineered muscle fibres were genetically modified to produce fluorescent flashes during muscle contraction and monitored in real time by transplanting them into a small chamber covered by glass on the backs of live mice. The results showed that these muscles contract in a similar manner as native neonatal skeletal muscle. Click to read more...

2. Optogenetics and stem cells help treat paralysis in mice

In a novel approach, scientists have inserted an algal gene coding for a light-responsive protein into mouse embryonic stem cells and transplanted them into mice with sciatic nerve injury. After five weeks to allow for muscle integration, the scientists have employed light to stimulate the nerve and hey observed that the muscles contracted in response to the light. This study will be useful to treat paralysis in the future. Click to read more...

3. Viral DNA is essential for pluripotency of human embryonic stem cells – reports study

A new study has reported that an ancient virus known as the human endogenous retrovirus subfamily H, or HERV-H, plays a key role in the pluripotency of human embryonic stem cells.Click to read more...

4. "Mini hearts" made of a cuff of heart muscle cells with ability to contract may prove useful to patients with chronic venous insufficiency

A "mini heart" composed of a rhythmically contracting "cuff" of heart muscle cells has been developed and it can be used to treat chronic venous insufficiency by using it to surround the problematic vein and help pump blood through the vein as it palpitates. Click to read more...

5. Clinical trial shows Improvement of heart function after injection of bone marrow derived mesenchymal stromal cells in chronic ischemic heart failure patients

The results of the largest placebo-controlled double-blind randomized trial on bone marrow derived mesenchymal stromal cells to treat patients with chronic ischemic heart failure has shown that patients who received stem cell injections had improvement in heart pump function compared to patients receiving a placebo, six months after treatment. Click to read more...

6. Stem cells and synthetic polymer help create organs like ears and noses in lab

By growing stem cells from fat in synthetic polymer scaffolds scientists from London have been able to grow noses and ears in the lab and they hope to transplant these lab made organs in patients in the near future. Click to read more...

7. Neurons derived using iPS technology advances research on amyotrophic lateral sclerosis

Using induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cell technology, skin cells from patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) were transformed into motor neurons and by studying these cells researchers have pinpointed an error in a protein that causes misregulation of neurofilament balance in these neurons Click to read more...

8. Stem cells from unborn baby conceived from embryo implanted after genetic screening to help sibling with Thalassaemia

In a novel approach to obtain stem cells to treat a four-year-old boy with Thalassaemia, Doctors have screened the embryos obtained by in vitro fertilization of the eggs from the boy's mother and then implanted the embryo that had an HLA match with the boy into the mother, after which pregnancy was confirmed. Now stem cells from the unborn baby will be stored and used for stem cell transplant to his sibling.Click to read more...

9. Studies demonstrate that very small embryonic-like stem cells (VSELs) are indeed multipotent

One study that has described the proper criteria for identifying and isolating the very small embryonic-like stem cells (VSELs) and another study that showed that these VSELs implanted into the cavity created by a cranial wound can differentiate into multiple cell types have thus demonstrated the multipotent nature of these cells. Click to read more...

10. Early results of clinical study on injection of stem cells for stroke shows promise

Early results of a clinical study that injected mesenchymal stem cells into the brains of 18 patients with stroke has demonstrated safety in all the patients and improvement in two of the patients. Click to read more..

11. Immunotherapy shows promise in advanced pancreatic cancer

Autologous Immune Enhancement Therapy (AIET) using patient's own immune cells has help improve the survival upto 26 months in a patient with advanced pancreatic cancer . Click to read more..

Really???

1. Are you aware that nearly 5- 8% of the human genome is composed of Human endogenous retrovirus (HERV) proviruses with approximately 98,000 ERV elements and fragments? Though most of these these ERVs appear defective and studies have shown that they are not capable of replication, nevertheless, these ERVs have been postulated to be the reason behind autoimmune diseases, multiple sclerosis, schizophrenia, Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) and cancer.                                                                                                 Source – Wikipedia

2. Did you know that in the earliest approaches to immunotherapy, in 1961, a female patient with metastatic choriocarcinoma was treated by a combined immunotherapy approach involving leucocytes from her husband as active immunization and antibodies generated in rabbits using her husband's spermatic fluid as passive immunization after hysterectomy and chemotherapy? The prinicple behind this approach is that post-gestational choriocarinoma originates from the placental tissue and mother’s body if stimulated can produce antibodies against it. The results showed reduction in the size of the metastases and improvement of general health condition in that patient. (Cinader B, et al. Can Med Assoc J. 1961; 84:306-9.)

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