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Reply to question about cell therapies for diabetes

I recently got this query in my inbox: I would like to know how to find research trials on the reprogramming and induced pluripotent stem cells. My son was diagnosed three years ago with type l diabetes and his doctor believes that he would be a good candidate for one of these research trials. How do we go about finding these research trials and what do we need to do to get him involved, David is 21 years old. Any help would be greatly appreciated as he would like to help further research and end diabetes.  Read more

More on the stem-cell treatment detentions in Hungary

Doug Sipp of the RIKEN CDB and Kyoto University CiRA offers this additional information on yesterday’s post:This recent development is interesting for a number of reasons. One of the people arrested, Yuliy Baltaytis, has been working in stem cell tourism for several years, and gained notoriety when a clinic he operated in Barbados, The Institute of Regenerative Medicine, was closed after a BBC expose made allegations that the fetal stem cells used in treatments were being sourced unethically in the Ukraine. He has also collaborated in the past with William Rader, of Medra fame. The Budapest Times is claiming that the cells being used in the treatment that led to the arrest were human ES cells, but given Dr Baltaytis’ history, it seems more likely that the intended cells were indeed of fetal origin.  Read more

Fat in the bone marrow stalls engraftment

Researchers have long known that fat will move into the placesleft behind when blood-producing cells are destroyed by chemotherapy or irradiation. New work, however, suggests that there is more going on. “We were taught in med school that fat was a space filler in the marrow, inversely proportional to haematopoietic content,” says George Daley of Children’s Hospital Boston. “What we show is that the fat actively influences HSC [haematopoietic stem cell] activity.” More specifically, Daley’s team shows that discouraging fat production in the marrow actually helps HSCs engraft1. This has important implications for helping patients recover after bone marrow transplants.  Read more

Stem Cells in NPG this week

Of all the stem cells, I find skin stem cells the most confusing. So, I was really grateful for Elaine Fuchs and Cedric Blanplain’s review in Nature Reivews Molceular Cell Biology. This week, we have a two-part Q&A with Fuchs about navigating a scientific career when she had few female colleagues and about loving the complexity of skin.  Read more