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So far JP Faber has created 5 blog entries.

Amniotic Stem Cells Demonstrate Healing Potential

Source: Mike Williams, Rice University; R&D // Photo: Mature blood vessels formed in hyrdogel from amniotic fluid, courtesy of Jacot Lab

(HOUSTON, Texas) — Rice Univ. and Texas Children’s Hospital scientists are using stem cells from amniotic fluid to promote the growth of robust, functional blood vessels in healing hydrogels.

In new experiments, the lab of bioengineer Jeffrey Jacot combined versatile amniotic stem cells with injectable hydrogels used as scaffolds in regenerative medicine and proved they enhance the development of vessels needed to bring blood to new tissue and carry waste products away.

The results appear in the Journal of Biomedical Materials Research Part A.
Jacot and his colleagues study the use of amniotic fluid cells from pregnant women to help heal infants born with congenital heart defects. Such fluids, drawn during standard tests, are generally discarded but show promise for implants made from a baby’s own genetically matched material.

He contends amniotic stem cells are valuable for their ability to differentiate into many other types of cells, including endothelial cells that form blood vessels.

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By |April 9th, 2015|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Study Shows How Stem Cells Slow Aging May Lead to New Treatments for Heart Failure

Source: PR Newswire, Stem Cells Translational Medicine / Image: Mesenchymal Stem Cells

(DURHAM, N.C.) — A new study published in STEM CELLS Translational Medicine demonstrates how mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) not only protect the heart from further damage after a cardiac incident but can actually slow down its aging process, too. These findings, in a rat model of the aging heart, could help propel stem cells to the forefront as a potential solution for more effective ways to treat heart conditions.

“This study is important as it suggests an alternative approach for treating heart failure in elderly patients,” said Yanjie Lu, M.D., Ph.D., a professor in the pharmacology department at Harbin Medical University (HMU) in Harbin, China, and a world-renowned expert on myocardial infarction. He led the study, conducted by colleagues at HMU.

Aging is a complex and multifaceted process, resulting in damage to molecules, cells and tissue that in turn leads to declining organs. Mesenchymal stem cells, found in bone marrow, can generate bone, cartilage and fat cells that support the formation of blood and fibrous connective tissue. These stem cells also can be coaxed in the laboratory into becoming a variety of cell types, from cardiomyocytes (heart muscle cells) and neurons, to osteoblasts, smooth muscle cells and more.

Several studies have already shown that MSCs can reverse age-related degeneration of multiple organs, restore physical and cognitive functions of aged mice, and improve age-associated osteoporosis, Parkinson’s disease and atherosclerosis. Dr. Lu’s team has been looking into the anti-aging benefits MSCs might have on the heart, too.

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By |April 8th, 2015|Uncategorized|0 Comments

New Advancements In 3-D Designs For Neural Tissue Engineering

Source: Eureka Alert; Neural Regeneration Research // Image Credit: Richard McMurtrey, Institute of Neural Regeneration & Tissue Engineering

(SALT LAKE CITY, Utah) — It is well known that neurological diseases and injuries pose some of the greatest challenges in modern medicine, with few if any options for effectively treating such diagnoses, but recent work suggests a unique approach for reconstructing damaged neural tissue. In an article published in the journal Neural Regeneration Research, several new designs for 3D tissue constructs are described for using stem cells grown on nanofiber scaffolding within a supportive hydrogel.

“The idea that neural structure can be guided in three dimensional hydrogels using nanofiber scaffolding and biochemical cues is quite unique,” said Dr. Richard McMurtrey, the author of the work. “Evidence from in vitro work thus far has been fairly surprising, showing that after only a few days neurons can grow long neurite extensions that track along the coated nanofibers.”

The tissue constructs have been designed for guidance of neural connections, acting like a road map for the growth of the neurons. “One of the weaknesses with prior studies of stem cell implantation into the nervous system is that no guidance is given for what the cells should do once they are implanted,” says McMurtrey. “But if we combine signaling molecules and three-dimensional topographical guidance along with the stem cells, the chances of the cells achieving their intended function is much greater.” Dr. McMurtrey likens the transplantation of cells into the harsh environment of the nervous system to dropping people off in the mountains with no resources and hoping that they form a functional civilization. “What we hope to do, however, is build some of the roads, bridges, street signs, and homes that can guide and protect the cells when they are transplanted. In this case, that infrastructure includes nanofibers, biochemical cues, and hydrogel composites.”

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By |April 6th, 2015|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Stem Cell Therapy Effective at 3 Years for Multiple Sclerosis Remission

Source: hcplive, JAMA

(COLUMBUS, Ohio) — High dose immunosuppressive therapy (HDIT) with autologous hematopoietic cell transplant (HCT) sustained relapsing remitting (RR) multiple sclerosis (MS) remission at 3 years, according to preliminary results published in JAMA Neurology.

Researchers from HALT MS study evaluated MS patients through 5 years after HCT in order to evaluate the safety, efficacy, and durability of MS disease stabilization through 3 years after HDIT/ HCT. This analysis is the pre specified 3-year interim from the trial, which enrolled 25 RRMS patients from various referral centers. The autologous peripheral blood stem cells grafts were CD34+ selected and then the participants received high dose treatment with carmustine, etoposide, cytarabine, and melphalan as well as rabbit antithymocyte globulin before autologous HCT.

The HALT MS trial aims for event free survival which the researchers defined as without death or disease activity from any one of the following: confirmed loss of neurologic function; clinical relapse; or new lesions observed on magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). The toxic effects were reported using the National Cancer Institute Common Terminology Criteria for Adverse Events.

“Theoretically, if you look at identical twins where one twin has MS, 75 percent of the time the other twin doesn’t have MS,” said study co author Michael Racke, MD, of Ohio State University, in a news release. “What we’re trying to do is make an MS patient their own identical twin that doesn’t have MS.”

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By |April 6th, 2015|Uncategorized|0 Comments

UC San Diego Launches Study on Stem Cells for Paralysis

Source: Ivanhoe Newswire

(SAN DIEGO, CA) — According to the Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation, nearly one in 50 people is living with paralysis. Until now, there wasn’t much hope. But a new study involving stem cells has doctors and patients excited.

Two years ago, Brenda Guerra’s life changed forever.

Guerra told Ivanhoe, “They told me that I went into a ditch and was ejected out of the vehicle.” The accident left the 26-year-old paralyzed from the waist down, and confined to a wheelchair.

“I don’t feel any of my lower body at all” she said.

Guerra has traveled from Kansas to UC San Diego to be the first patient to participate in a ground-breaking safety trial, testing stem cells for paralysis.

Joseph D. Ciacci, MD, Professor of Neurosurgery at UC San Diego told Ivanhoe, “We are directly injecting the stem cells into the spine.”

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By |April 6th, 2015|Uncategorized|0 Comments