January 26, 2021

The Niche

Trusted stem cell blog & resources

Month: April 2017

2 min read

In case you have some free time for reading this week, here’s a list containing an assortment of interesting research articles and stem cell headlines. I’ve thrown some oddballs in there too including one article from May 1983, when I was just finishing up junior high. No, I didn’t write it. And no the headline for this current blog post is not referring to stem cell-themed pubs where you can go get some ale made from stem cells, but that’s not a bad idea, …Read More

7 min read

Can science now cure MS in some patients with stem cells or is that near on the horizon? What about stem cells for other serious autoimmune disorders? What are the risks to patients in terms of health, money, and hope? What if patients must find $100,000 or $200,000 just to get into a clinical trial for this and insurance only sometimes helps in a big way? Will the trial conclude with an approved product that works and is safe enough? It’s always complicated with an ongoing …Read More

1 min read

One of my kids and I attended the March for Science In Sacramento this past Saturday. It was a lot of fun, energizing, and interesting. I found it encouraging and exciting to see thousands of people gathered in support of science. There were tons of scientists, but quite a few people who were not scientists themselves, but supported science. Some of the signs and other expressions of support for science or concerns about the current political climate on science were particularly intense and thought-provoking. I liked …Read More

10 min read

Dr. Richard Burt of Northwestern University has been doing cutting edge research on the use of stem cells for autoimmune disorders for more than a decade. The core idea behind the work that Burt and other research teams are doing is that stem cells may have revolutionary potential to somehow counteract the autoimmunity that causes serious, life threatening diseases in many patients, including those suffering from particularly aggressive forms of Multiple Sclerosis (MS). Some have recently been characterizing Dr. Burt’s MS experiments as potential …Read More

2 min read

The civil lawsuit against Stemgenex here in California was substantially narrowed by a judge and some of the judge’s comments were surprising in suggesting limitations in how patients may respond to stem cell clinics or other businesses if they are unhappy enough to consider filing suit. For more on the court’s ruling see my previous post. I asked a California legal expert, who prefers to remain anonymous, for their take on this and at the handling of patient consent in particular. Below is their …Read More

5 min read

Can California stem cell clinics make questionable marketing claims about their experimental, non-FDA approved offerings as long as they are not demonstrably false? Do such clinics not bear any legal requirement to provide informed consent to patients? A new court ruling raises such striking questions. San Diego stem cell clinic Stemgenex sells non-FDA approved experimental stem cell offerings to patients suffering from a variety of conditions and last year a lawsuit was filed against the clinic on behalf of some of their customers. The proposed class …Read More

2 min read

Washington State is considering state funding for regenerative medicine. How cool is that? You can read more about this effort in an opinion piece authored by Washington stem cell researcher, Professor Charles Murry. There’s so much important stem cell research going on that federal funding, private and biotech investors, and philanthropy simply cannot fund it all so in many cases state funding can fulfill a crucial role as we’ve seen here in California with CIRM and in other states such as New York and Maryland. …Read More

1 min read

Want $250 as well as at least a sliver of science-related glory? Within my book GMO Sapiens on CRISPR and human genetic modification, I’ve hidden a scientific Easter egg. There’s more Easter egg info over here including the rules. If you are the first one to find and properly explain this egg to me after buying the book, you win $250. I had originally limited it to the print edition, but e-version purchase is fine too. So far no one has gotten the hidden egg right. To give people …Read More

4 min read

Some months back a USPTO court issued a ruling that most interpreted as meaning the Broad Institute had won the so-called ‘CRISPR patent battle’ in the U.S. and that UC Berkeley, Jennifer Doudna, and Emmanuelle Charpentier had lost. Now this week Berkeley has appealed that ruling. It seems the odds are against Berkeley prevailing in its appeal, but frankly Berkeley deserves the main CRISPR patent and Broad doesn’t. Interestingly, the European Patent Office apparently agrees with this view and disagrees with the USPTO. Update: note that the Berkeley patent …Read More