May 30, 2020

The Niche

Knoepfler lab stem cell blog

Month: October 2017

3 min read

Some notable newly published Phase II data from the Duke cord blood for cerebral palsy trial unfortunately doesn’t give much reason for optimism that this approach is going to have a substantial positive effect for these kids. The double-blinded, placebo-controlled study did not find a meaningful benefit overall from infusions of autologous cord blood (ACB) for children with cerebral palsy. It didn’t meet its primary endpoint. The study was published in Stem Cells Translational Medicine and was entitled, “Effect of Autologous Cord Blood Infusion on Motor …Read More

2 min read

I recently flew up to Seattle from Sacramento to visit the UW Institute for Stem Cell and Regenerative Medicine (ISCRM). It was a great trip just on the science front and seeing some old friends from the UW and the Hutch, as well as making some new ones (yeah, corny, but true). I not only love stem cell research but also nature and I’ve got a weakness for aerial photography of landscapes and especially mountains. This post includes some photos I took from the …Read More

3 min read

How much does a stem cell treatment cost? $5,000 is a nice round number that is probably close to the mark on average, but the price varies a great deal and depends on many factors. Factors that influence perceived average price include what one actually sees as being under that umbrella term “stem cell treatment.” Does the transplant from a stem cell clinical trial count as a “treatment”? I’m not sure it should, but many view it as qualifying for that definition. By and large, you …Read More

7 min read

It’s germline, heritable human CRISPR time, right? Wrong. But the particularly enthusiastic supporters of heritable human CRISPR often cite hypothetical benefits in glowing terms, but either don’t mention risks or strongly downplay them. These fans also tend to leave alternative, proven and safe technologies such as preimplantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) out of the discussion or only mention them as an afterthought. In reality, the vast majority of anything that CRISPR could hypothetically achieve heritably in human reproduction can be done better, more simply, and …Read More

9 min read

When I think of the promise of stem cells for diabetes, the privately held California stem cell firm ViaCyte is the first biotech that comes to mind now. It has promising stem cell clinical trial work building. Today’s post is a new interview with the company’s CEO Paul Laikind. For past posts on ViaCyte see here, which includes an interview with Laikind a few years ago. PK: The last time we talked was in March 2015. Can you please update us on the VC-01 trial? How …Read More

3 min read

Time for some science humor. For past attempts at humor on this blog see here. Today, I’m asking: if science was more like sports such as football, soccer, basketball, etc., what penalties and fouls would us scientists get? Here is a humorous look at the things we mess up in small or mondo ways as we do our science, and how we would be penalized in a humor alternate universe. In some cases, I also have included my own reactions and indicated whether I’m …Read More