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Dana-Farber researchers report clinical trial results in treatment of leukemia and lymphoma

New results from clinical trials of immunotherapy and experimental targeted agents for patients with leukemia and lymphoma are being presented by Dana-Farber Cancer Institute researchers at the American Society of Hematology (ASH) Annual Meeting Dec. 1-4.  Here are summaries of three presentations, including one that compared outcomes of CAR T-cell therapy in patients in clinical trials with outcomes in the “real world” of clinical practice: CAR T-cell treatment provides durable
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Platelets grown from stem cells may be alternative to donated platelets

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. Platelets are a component of blood that helps with clotting. Platelet transfusions can be life-saving for patients dealing with cancer or the effects of chemotherapy, infections,
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New Technique Uses Umbilical Cord Stem Cells for Early Repair of Cleft Palate

A technique using umbilical cord blood stem cells could be a promising new approach for repair of cleft palate in infants, reports a paper in The Journal of Craniofacial Surgery, published in the Lippincott portfolio by Wolters Kluwer.  Performed as part of reconstructive surgery when the infant is a few months old, the stem cell procedure provides good results in growing new bone to close the upper jaw cleft – and may avoid the need for later bone graft surgery, according to the case report by Alejandro Garcia Botero, MD, of Hospital
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Human Neural Stem Cells Drive Spine Regeneration in Rats

Stem cells maintained in culture renewed long regions of spinal cord in rat transplant model NIBIB-funded researchers generated stable lines of spinal cord neural stem cells in a laboratory dish. Once transplanted into a rat model of spinal cord injury, the cells enabled robust regeneration of functional neurons along the length of the spine. The research team  from the University of California, San Diego, used human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs)
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UIC Researchers Create Heart Cells to Study AFib

University of Illinois at Chicago researchers have discovered a way turn pluripotent stem cells into atrial cells, which make up the upper chambers, or atria, of the heart. The discovery will enable them to better study atrial fibrillation, the most common heart rhythm disorder also known as AFib, which originates in the heart’s atria. As reported in the journal Stem Cell Reports, the researchers obtained blood cells from healthy volunteers, activated genes to
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Stem Cell Therapy May Help Reverse Effects of Premature Menopause, Restore Fertility

Young women with premature ovarian insufficiency (POI) may be able to use their own bone marrow stem cells to rejuvenate their ovaries and avoid the effects of premature menopause, new research suggests. The preliminary results from the ongoing ROSE clinical trial will be presented Tuesday at ENDO 2018, the 100th annual meeting of the Endocrine Society, in Chicago, Ill. "In the two participants who have completed the treatment to date, serum estrogen
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New Stem-Cell Based Stroke Treatment Repairs Damaged Brain Tissue

A team of researchers at the University of Georgia’s Regenerative Bioscience Center and ArunA Biomedical, a UGA startup company, have developed a new treatment for stroke that reduces brain damage and accelerates the brain’s natural healing tendencies in animal models. They published their findings in the journal Translational Stroke Research. The research team led by UGA professor Steven Stice and Nasrul Hoda of Augusta University created a treatment called AB126
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‘Decorated’ Stem Cells Could Offer Targeted Heart Repair

Although cardiac stem cell therapy is a promising treatment for heart attack patients, directing the cells to the site of an injury – and getting them to stay there – remains challenging. In a new pilot study using an animal model, North Carolina State University researcher Ke Cheng and his team show that “decorating” cardiac stem cells with platelet nanovesicles can increase the stem cells’ ability to find and remain
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UCLA Researchers Create Skeletal Muscle From Stem Cells

Discovery is major step towards a stem cell replacement therapy for Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy UCLA scientists have developed a new strategy to efficiently isolate, mature and transplant skeletal muscle cells created from human pluripotent stem cells, which can produce all cell types of the body. The findings are a major step towards developing a stem cell replacement therapy for muscle diseases including Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy, which affects approximately 1 in
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Finding a Key to Unlock Blocked Differentiation in Microrna-Deficient Embryonic Stem Cells

This aids goal to use stem cells in therapy, where an important hurdle is efficient differentiation. The more than 200 different types of human cells have the same DNA but express different ensembles of genes. Each cell type was derived from embryonic stem cells, which are called pluripotent stem cells because they can differentiate to all those different cell fates. One very active area of biology is cells that mimic
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Prostaglandin E1 Inhibits Leukemia Stem Cells

Targeting leukemia stem cells in combination with standard chemotherapy may improve treatment for chronic myeloid leukemia Two drugs, already approved for safe use in people, may be able to improve therapy for chronic myeloid leukemia (CML), a blood cancer that affects myeloid cells, according to results from a University of Iowa study in mice. CML is a relatively common cancer. The American Cancer Society estimates that in 2017 there will
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Prostaglandin E1 Inhibits Leukemia Stem Cells Targeting leukemia stem cells in combination with standard chemotherapy may improve treatment for chronic myeloid leukemia

Two drugs, already approved for safe use in people, may be able to improve therapy for chronic myeloid leukemia (CML), a blood cancer that affects myeloid cells, according to results from a University of Iowa study in mice. CML is a relatively common cancer. The American Cancer Society estimates that in 2017 there will be about 8,950 new cases and about 1,080 people will die of the disease. In its
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Fetal membranes may help transform regenerative medicine

A new review looks at the potential of fetal membranes, which make up the amniotic sac surrounding the fetus during pregnancy, for regenerative medicine. Fetal membranes have been used as biological bandages for skin grafts as well as for serious burns. They may also have numerous other applications because they contain a variety of stem cells, which might be used to treat cardiovascular and neurological diseases, diabetes, and other medical
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CRI Scientists Discover Vitamin C Regulates Stem Cell Function and Suppresses Leukemia Development

Not much is known about stem cell metabolism, but a new study from the Children’s Medical Center Research Institute at UT Southwestern (CRI) has found that stem cells take up unusually high levels of vitamin C, which then regulates their function and suppresses the development of leukemia. “We have known for a while that people with lower levels of ascorbate (vitamin C) are at increased cancer risk, but we haven’t fully
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Scientists create stem cell therapy for lung fibrosis conditions

A team of scientists from the UNC School of Medicine and North Carolina State University (NCSU) has developed promising research towards a possible stem cell treatment for several lung conditions, such as idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF), chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), and cystic fibrosis -- often-fatal conditions that affect tens of millions of Americans. In the journal Respiratory Research, the scientists demonstrated that they could harvest lung stem cells from
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Identification of PTPRZ as a drug target for cancer stem cells in glioblastoma

Glioblastoma is the most malignant brain tumor with high mortality. Cancer stem cells are thought to be crucial for tumor initiation and its recurrence after standard therapy with radiation and temozolomide (TMZ) chemotherapy. Protein tyrosine phosphatase receptor type Z (PTPRZ) is an enzyme that is highly expressed in glioblastoma, especially in cancer stem cells. The research group of Professor Masaharu Noda and Researcher Akihiro Fujikawa of the National Institute for
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Stem Cells May Be The Key To Staying Strong In Old Age

University of Rochester Medical Center researchers have discovered that loss of muscle stem cells is the main driving force behind muscle decline in old age in mice. Their finding challenges the current prevailing theory that age-related muscle decline is primarily caused by loss of motor neurons. Study authors hope to develop a drug or therapy that can slow muscle stem cell loss and muscle decline in the future. As early