Better use of current drugs to target cancer

Better use of current drugs to target cancer
“In the case of breast cancer, other researchers have found new ways to make existing drugs more effective by only giving them to people who were likely to benefit based on their specific traits and using drugs that target these traits,” Bhatia said. A team of researchers at McMaster University has identified a unique feature of cancer stem cells that can be exploited to kill the deadly...

Bitter or sweet? How taste cells decide what they want to be

Bitter or sweet? How taste cells decide what they want to be
In the current paper, published online in the open access journal Scientific Reports, Jiang and his collaborators studied taste organoids at different stages of growth to identify which genes are turned on at each stage of taste cell generation. Jiang notes that the research may have treatment implications for patients who lose their sense of taste following radiation for head and neck cancers. “Understanding...

Grape-based compounds kill colon cancer stem cells in mice

Grape-based compounds kill colon cancer stem cells in mice
Story Source: Materials provided by Penn State. Note: Content may be edited for style and length. “We are particularly interested in targeting stem cells because, according to cancer stem-cell theory, cancerous tumors are driven by cancer stem cells,” said Vanamala. “Cancer stem cells are capable of self-renewal, cellular differentiation and maintain their stem cell-like characteristics...

Injured bones reconstructed by gene and stem cell therapies

Injured bones reconstructed by gene and stem cell therapies
In their experiment, the investigators constructed a matrix of collagen, a protein the body uses to build bones, and implanted it in the gap between the two sides of a fractured leg bone in laboratory animals. This matrix recruited the fractured leg’s own stem cells into the gap over a period of two weeks. To initiate the bone repair process, the team delivered a bone-inducing gene directly into...

Minimizing the effects of radiation therapy

Minimizing the effects of radiation therapy
“We knew that macrophages are the missionaries of the immune system,” said Saha. “But we learned they also assist in organ growth, repair, and regeneration.” Now they knew that ISCs depend on the stromal niche to reproduce new cells, and of the different types of stromal cells, the macrophages were critical. Macrophages are white blood cells that eat up cellular debris, especially...

Cardiac stem cells from heart disease patients may be harmful

Cardiac stem cells from heart disease patients may be harmful
“But our findings suggest that stem cells, like any drug, can have adverse effects,” said Prof. Leor. “We concluded that stem cells used in cardiac therapy should be drawn from healthy donors or be better genetically engineered for the patient.” Story Source: The results could help improve the use of autologous stem cells — those drawn from the patients themselves —...

inflammatory molecule essential to muscle regeneration in mice, researchers find

inflammatory molecule essential to muscle regeneration in mice, researchers find
A molecule released as part of an inflammatory response after muscle injury or rigorous exercise activates muscle stem cells responsible for repairing the damage, according to a study by researchers at the Stanford University School of Medicine. Metabolite infiltrates muscle fiber “When we gave mice a single shot of PGE2 directly to the muscle, it robustly affected muscle regeneration and even...

World first: Stem cell treatment for lethal STAT1 gene mutation shows ‘disappointing,’ but promising results

World first: Stem cell treatment for lethal STAT1 gene mutation shows 'disappointing,' but promising results
Dr. Okada, who first discovered the STAT1 gain of function mutation in 2011, says that “Overall, this result is disappointing — but the fact five patients were cured proves that treatment with stem cells can work, and we now need to learn from these 15 individual cases.” In response, the researchers have made several proposals for improving this treatment. In addition, the chemotherapy...

3D skin made of stem cells treats backbone birth defect in rodents

3D skin made of stem cells treats backbone birth defect in rodents
Myelomeningocele is a severe congenital defect in which the backbone and spinal canal do not close before birth, putting those affected at risk of lifelong neurological problems. In a preclinical study published June 6th in Stem Cell Reports, researchers developed a stem cell-based therapy for generating skin grafts to cover myelomeningocele defects before birth. They first generated artificial skin...

A star is born: Lesser-known brain cell takes center stage

A star is born: Lesser-known brain cell takes center stage
Additionally, the team tested their protocol on induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs), which are adult cells, usually derived from skin, that have been reprogrammed to a stem-cell-like state. The lab successfully turned iPSCs into astrocytes that exhibited the same inflammation sensitivity the natural astrocytes did, providing an important resource for studying diseases where brain inflammation may...