STANFORD University, in California, USA, has been the pioneer for many researches in stem cell therapeutics. It is moving very fast, and aiming to make stem cell therapy available to the patients’ bed in almost every other case. Be it cancer or Parkinson’s, stem cell research and Stanford University is becoming synonyms for cure.
People whose dear ones are suffering from deadly diseases grope around to find an answer from stem cell research. Most of the time they end up helplessly with no solutions since they can’t find the right place. Often people ask us, where to go for, and what are the latest updates for stem cell research. As a start-up, we are trying to inform you about the latest developments, starting with Stanford University, Califormia.
Let us read about the recent top 10 remarkable events in stem cell research in Stanford University.
Stanford scientists pinpoint key proteins in blood stem cell replication (10/8/08)
“These studies, and additional experiments from our lab in other tissues and organs, indicate that Rb proteins play a critical role in suppressing tumors originating in adult stem cells populations,” said Sage, who is also a member of the Stanford Cancer Center.
The protein doesn’t work alone, however. Two other family members, p107 and p130, also help carry out the important duties. Their ability to fill in for one another makes it difficult to parse out exactly what the proteins are doing at a molecular level. Unfortunately, laboratory animals missing just one or two family members die soon after birth.
Muscle stem cell identity confirmed by Stanford researchers (9/17/08)
A single cell can repopulate damaged skeletal muscle in mice, say scientists at the Stanford University School of Medicine, who devised a way to track the cell’s fate in living animals. The research is the first to confirm that so-called satellite cells encircling muscle fibers harbor an elusive muscle stem cell.
Identifying and isolating such a cell in humans would have profound therapeutic implications for disorders such as muscular dystrophy, injury and muscle wasting due to aging, disuse or disease.
“We were able to show at the single-cell level that these cells are true, multipotent stem cells,” said Helen Blau, PhD, the Donald E. and Delia B. Baxter Professor of Pharmacology. “They fit the classic definition: they can both self-renew and give rise to specialized progeny.” Blau is the senior author of the research, which was published Sept. 17 in the online issue of Nature.
“We are thrilled with the results,” said Alessandra Sacco, PhD, senior research scientist in Blau’s laboratory and first author of the research. “It’s been known that these satellite cells are crucial for the regeneration of muscle tissue, but this is the first demonstration of self-renewal of a single cell.”
Cancer stem cells created with technique developed at Stanford (4/9/08)
With a bit of genetic trickery, researchers at the Stanford University School of Medicine have turned normal skin cells into cancer stem cells, a step that will make these naturally rare cells easier to study
Howard Chang, MD, PhD, assistant professor of dermatology and senior author of the work, said being able to generate cancer stem cells from normal cells will help move that research forward. “The upshot is that there may be a way to directly create cancer stem cells in the lab so you don’t always have to purify these rare cells from patients in order to study them directly,” he said.
Immune response to human embryonic stem cells in mice suggests human therapy may face challenge (8/18/08)
Human embryonic stem cells trigger an immune response in mice, researchers from the Stanford University School of Medicine report. The finding suggests that the effectiveness of human therapies derived from the cells could be limited unless ways are found to dampen the rejection response.
The researchers found the immune response in mice could be mitigated by the use of common antirejection medications. Overall, the work indicated that, contrary to previous suggestions, the immune system is not blind to the presence of foreign embryonic stem cells.
Neural stem cells helped repair stroke damage in rats’ brains (2/20/08)
Neural cells derived from human embryonic stem cells helped repair stroke-related damage in the brains of rats and led to improvements in their physical abilities after a stroke, according to a new study by researchers at the School of Medicine.”Human embryonic stem cell-based therapies have the potential to help treat this complex disease,” Steinberg said, adding that he hopes the cells from this study can be used in human stroke trials within five years.
Researchers find great granddaddy of human blood cells (1/9/08)
Researchers at the School of Medicine have isolated a human blood cell that represents the great-grandparent of all the cells of the blood, a finding that could lead to new treatments for blood cancers and other blood diseases.
This cell, called the multipotent progenitor, is the first offspring of the much-studied blood-forming stem cell that resides in the bone marrow and gives rise to all cells of the blood. It’s also the cell that’s thought to give rise to acute myelogenous leukemia when mutated.
Isolating this cell, which is well-known in mice but had yet to be isolated in human blood, fills in an important gap in the human blood cell family tree.
Cancer stem cells tracked down in colon tumors (6/6/07)
Researchers at the School of Medicine have identified the cancer stem cells that propagate tumors in colon and rectal cancer, a discovery that could lead to improved treatment of this deadly cancer.
“This work will enable us to better understand how to identify these cells, and to do molecular studies to find potential new therapies,” said Clarke, the senior author of the paper and the Karel H. and Avice N. Beekhuis Professor in Cancer Biology.
Clarke was the first to find cancer stem cells in a solid tumor—in this case, breast cancer—in 2003 while working at the University of Michigan. Since coming to Stanford in 2005, he joined existing efforts that have resulted in finding cancer stem cells in head and neck, pancreatic and now colorectal tumors.
Stem cells turned into vessels (6/21/06)
Researchers have taken a first step toward growing blood vessels from stem cells that could eventually be transplanted into living organisms.
Starting with embryonic stem cells derived from mice, surgical resident Oscar Abilez, MD, and colleagues have successfully differentiated the stem cells into myocytes, one of the building blocks of blood vessels, after placing them in a life-like growth environment that the research team had created. The scientists hope to be able to eventually grow whole blood vessels that can be transplanted back into mice.
The work is being performed in the Clark Center laboratory of Bio-X faculty member Christopher Zarins, MD, professor of surgery.
“It’s very odd,” Abilez said. “We get these stem cells and grow them into contracting myocytes in cultures: You really see them contracting, you really know they’re alive, and you start to believe this stem cell stuff has possibilities.”
Treating deafness with stem cells (11/16/05)
As a leader in stem cell-based research on the inner ear, Heller, newly arrived at the School of Medicine direct from the Harvard faculty, has a step-by-step plan for making this dream come true. It will, at the very least, take another decade or so, but if anyone can do it, he’s the guy to place your bets on.
“Heller’s a world-class scientist and originator in this field,” said Robert Jackler, MD, the chair of the otolaryngology department who helped recruit Heller to spearhead research into possible cures for deafness. “He came here to assemble a team around his vision.”
Heller’s vision is to work together with the many experts on the Stanford campus to come up with a variety of possible cures for deafness from drug therapy treatment—which could be as simple as an application of ear drops—to stem cell transplantation into the inner ear to remedy hearing loss.
Stem cells from brain transformed to produce insulin (4/25/05)
Although the work is not yet ready for human patients, Seung Kim, MD, PhD, the lead author and assistant professor of developmental biology at the Stanford University School of Medicine, said it could lead to new ways of transplanting insulin-producing cells into people with diabetes, eventually providing a cure for the disease.
In past work, Kim and members of his lab enticed mouse embryonic stem cells to transform into insulin-producing cells. When transplanted into diabetic mice, these cells effectively made up for the lost insulin-producing cells in the pancreas, called islet cells, and treated the diabetes. However, embryonic stem cells are difficult to work with in the lab and most existing human embryonic stem cell lines are contaminated and can’t be transplanted into humans.
Kim thought that human fetal neural stem cells may be one way to sidestep the more problematic embryonic stem cells. The study shows that his intuition was correct.
“When you look at islets cells you realize that they resemble neurons,” Kim said. Like neurons, islet cells respond to external signals by changing their electrical properties and releasing packages of proteins. In the case of islets, that protein is insulin.
What’s more, some neurons in mice and humans take the first steps toward producing insulin. In insects such as fruit flies, the cells that produce insulin and regulate blood sugar are, in fact, neurons. Taken together, this evidence suggested to Kim that neural stem cells may be able to produce insulin.
The story described is a “Lilliput” to the “Gulliver” work that has already been undertaken in the field of stem cell research in the university. We hope the information helps to make you cognizant about some of the latest developments and will be there to tell some more story of other places. In the mean time if you have more queries about the researches going on in Stanford University, do not hesitate to contact us. We care for you..