January 18, 2021

The Niche

Trusted stem cell blog & resources

Month: April 2011

3 min read

It seems reasonably likely that in the end, the final say on the embryonic stem cell case one way or another will be decided by the U.S. Supreme Court. While yesterday brought a victory for science and patients and logic, this was just one battle, not the war. The war that opponents of ES cell research are waging against hope and against science continues. The plaintiffs in the case have many legal options available to them to continue their fight to force feed their …Read More

2 min read

A Federal Appeals Court ruled 2-1 today to overturn Judge Lamberth’s injunction against federal funding of ES cell research. Great news! You can read the decision here (warning: big pdf). A key part of the ruling was the following: “the plaintiffs are unlikely to prevail because Dickey-Wicker is ambiguous and the NIH seems reasonably to have concluded that although Dickey-Wicker bars funding for the destructive act of deriving an ESC from an embryo, it does not prohibit funding a research project in which an …Read More

3 min read

What is a survivor? Dan Zenka, Senior VP of the Prostate Cancer Foundation, recently pondered this question in an excellent post on his blog.  The post has also drawn more than 50 comments, which I found very interesting based on the range of opinions and different perspectives. The comments are about prostate cancer, but could just as easily apply to any other cancer, injury, or disease. But the thing about cancer that is somewhat unique compared to some other diseases is the chance that …Read More

1 min read

The California Public Safety Committee today passed AB 190 and in so doing has funded the Roman Reed Spinal Cord Injury Research Act! The action will provide up to $11 million a year in funding for spinal cord injury research. This is amazing news and is the result of a lot of hard work by many, but especially of course Roman and his dad, Don C. Reed. These guys are real heroes! I just got a quote from Roman on this exciting news: AB …Read More

1 min read

The vote was delayed a few weeks, but today is the big day. The California Assembly Public Safety Committee will vote on AB 190, funding the Roman Reed Act. So action is needed today! If AB 190 passes, there will be roughly $11 million/year for spinal cord research coming from $3 for each reckless driving speeding ticket. If it doesn’t pass, there will be $0. This is a crucial time so all you blog readers we need your help today. Please call, FAX, or …Read More

2 min read

When does politics trump hope? It seems all the time. I think politicians frequently take positions on science-related issues that they either don’t really believe or understand. Perhaps I’m wrong, but for example, I don’t believe that most national level Republican leaders oppose ES cell research. Most of us have either ourselves faced injuries or diseases that the current practice of medicine can only help to a certain degree, or have had loved ones in that position. The same is true of politicians and …Read More

1 min read

This is one of my favorite pieces and a reader favorite getting hundreds of hits! Let me know what you think. You can read the original post here with comments. If a stem cell could talk, what would it say (tweet?) I imagine stem cells like teenagers. So much potential but at times difficult. Below is my take on what a stem cell being prepared for transplantation would Tweet. Life is too short to always take everything 100% seriously so here’s some humor.  

4 min read

Who’s who in the iPS cell field?  In this post, I examine the people, journals, places, funding agencies, and companies that are the leaders in the iPS cell field. I start with publishing. Last year we did a post on publishing trends in the iPS cell field.  It suggested that the iPS cell field was exploding in terms of the number of papers, but that they were mostly being published in a surprisingly limited number of journals. What I’m seeing so far for 2011 also …Read More

5 min read

Six months ago, I published a Top 10 list of questions and predictions for the stem cell field.  How did I do?  A mixed bag. Below are the questions and predictions from October 2010 (in blue), along with an update as to how my predictions fared. 1)   How will Geron’s Phase I Clinical Trial go? Will GRNOPC1 be safe? When will we know? Barring any major catastrophic events, it may be a year before we find out how the trial is going. Time intervals …Read More

5 min read

What are iPS cells? We talk about iPS cells all the time. We are very excited about them. Heck, the web address for this blog is ipscell.com. But what are iPS cells, really? A simple definition of iPS cells is the following: Embryonic stem cell-like cells that are made from non-stem cells in a lab. But does that definition do them justice?  In fact, there is a lot more to know about iPS cells and more complete ways of defining them such that when …Read More