May 30, 2020

The Niche

Knoepfler lab stem cell blog

Month: May 2014

2 min read

It’s been an important week for stem cells. Although I’ve been busy working on multiple grants and papers, when I take a break I like to read up on what’s been going on with stem cells. What are the top stem cell stories and headlines of the week? CIRM awarded Asterias (a subsidiary of BioTime) $14.3 million to continue clinical research into the use of hESC-derived OPCs for spinal cord injury. This is great news as the work formerly started by Geron lives again …Read More

2 min read

Japanese news media are reporting that Haruko Obokata and other key authors have agreed to retract the Nature STAP cell letter, but not the Nature article. This is a major development and a peculiar one because to many in the  field it is the Nature STAP cell article that is the more flawed of the two Nature papers on STAP. Why would Obokata and her colleagues agree to retract the STAP letter from Nature, especially after for so long categorically rejecting the idea? I suspect they are under pressure from other …Read More

3 min read

Two stem cell papers riddled with errors, with figures that resulted from potential misconduct, with plagiarism, and with other serious problems remain uncorrected and unretracted in the prestigious journal Nature. It is well past time for the journal to editorially retract them. It was about four months ago that Nature published the two astonishing STAP papers reporting the supposed creation of super-powerful stem cells (known variously as STAP cells or STAP stem cells) via simple methods such as weak acid treatment. Since their publication, it’s been all …Read More

2 min read

If you read this blog you know that I like stem cell contests and giving out awards. In the latest contest I am teaming up with ISSCR. The winner of the contest will receive a free registration to the upcoming ISSCR 2014 Annual Meeting in beautiful Vancouver, B.C. How do you enter and possibly win? Simply write an essay, 300 words or less, on the topic: “Why I want to go to ISSCR 2014”. Send it to me at [email protected] I will pick the …Read More

4 min read

When bioethicist Arthur Caplan talks about stem cells, people pay close attention and for good reason. Caplan has provided important perspectives on the stem cell field over the years. For example, you can see a guest post on this blog here about human cloning. However, in my post today I respectfully discuss how I disagree with several parts of this week’s piece by Caplan on why there are allegedly so many ethical problems in the stem cell research field. Caplan’s article (see screenshot from video at right) is focused on a question articulated by …Read More

1 min read

What happens if we start using induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells clinically in humans? A cool new paper recently came out that gets us closer to being able to predict an answer. It’s an important question as iPS cell-derived cellular products are getting closer to clinical use. For example, the first iPS cell-based clinical trial began to enroll patients in Japan last year in a clinical study related to macular degeneration (see my interview with Dr. Masayo Takahashi, who is leading that intriguing study). …Read More