January 17, 2021

The Niche

Trusted stem cell blog & resources

Month: August 2020

4 min read

What’s been going on in the stem cell and regenerative medicine field over the past week and what are some worthwhile things to read? Today’s post has recommended recent reads from the scientific literature and the media. I’ve also got our weekly stem cell/regenerative medicine quiz question and the answer to last week’s. You can check out last week’s recommended reads here, which has last week’s quiz question. Toward the bottom of the post there’s also a “blast from the past” link to a piece …Read More

6 min read

The FDA and its CBER branch have been doing a good job overall in the last 3+ years to tackle the unproven stem cell clinic problem, but lately on the stem cells for COVID-19 front there is reason for real concern. I believe the agency is taking on major risk overall by clearing a vast number of cell therapy trials for COVID-19 mostly without much data, but the clearance of a few programs by for-profit stem cell clinics is especially problematic in my view. FDA on …Read More

4 min read

What science and stem cell pubs are you reading right now and what do you hope to get too soon? Sometimes science means getting out in the field. Now there are no wild stem cells out there roaming the fields to catch and analyze, but there are other ways. A couple of my kids and I went out to watch the Perseid Meteor Shower a few weeks back. We brought our camera with us to try to catch some meteors with leaving the shutter …Read More

6 min read

Graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) is counterintuitive In the weeks and months following a transplant, a major concern is the recipient’s immune system rejecting the “foreign” biological material. But in GVHD, the opposite happens: transplanted tissue unleashes a horde of T cells that spark a cascade of inflammation, within 100 days. Typically, GVHD follows a bone marrow transplant (BMT). Eighty Percent Mortality BMT has been used for more than half a century to treat and possibly cure certain cancers and single-gene conditions like sickle cell disease, …Read More

5 min read

Many are  jumping on the bandwagon of trying stem cells for COVID-19 or testing other cellular therapies for the novel coronavirus disease, but there have been problems with either the rationales for the trials themselves or more often with how they portrayed. Sometimes there has even been outright hype. I’ve called this collective trend of promotion of scads of trials of cell therapies for COVID “throwing spaghetti at the wall”. Some may stick, but most probably won’t. If fact, there’s a reasonable possibility that …Read More

3 min read

Today’s post is the latest edition of my weekly recommended reads, which this week include Fate Therapeutics, COVID-19 updates, AAMC, and more including some great pubs such as one on 2 modes of PRC2 function. Also check out this handy resource: Helpful 2020 List of Stem Cell Journals and this blast from the past post of 10 years ago: Keep Your Stem Cells Away From BPA. I’ll start with the mid-August 2020 recommended pubs and then go to the media items, but first I wanted to …Read More

7 min read

Stem cell clinics and suppliers have been getting into the business of making promotional films to generate more revenue, but now there’s something very different in the cinematic stem cell arena called From Jail Cell to Stem Cell by filmmaker Doug Orchard. It is at its heart an exposé film about some in my view particularly concerning stem cell and exosome clinics and suppliers. The only other thing similar to this was 2019’s great podcast Bad Batch. Reviewing the movie From Jail Cell to Stem Cell Today’s …Read More

3 min read

What are you reading these days and does it include topics like cell therapies for COVID-19, ALS, regenerative potential of fibroblasts, and why Zoom meetings are so tiring for the brain? I cover those topics and more below with recommended reads including papers and media items. Here’s last week’s recommended reads. Here’s to fibroblasts, which have regenerative activities Distinct Regulatory Programs Control the Latent Regenerative Potential of Dermal Fibroblasts during Wound Healing. This work from a team led by Jeff Biernaskie was published in Cell Stem …Read More

5 min read

In COVID-19, the sense of smell can diminish, vanish, or oddly skew, for weeks or months. The loss usually starts suddenly and is more than the temporarily dulled chemical senses of a stuffy nose from the common cold. As researchers followed up mounting reports of loss of olfaction, a surprising source of perhaps the longest-lasting cases emerged: stem cells in the olfactory epithelium. A Common Symptom Facebook groups may be ahead of the medical literature in providing vivid descriptions of the loss of olfaction …Read More

6 min read

This is a post by Mina Kim, a UC Davis student intern for The Niche blog, about the main types of cellular therapies being studied clinically for COVID-19. During the novel coronavirus pandemic with millions of COVID-19 cases, the development of safe and effective treatments for patients is vital. Cellular medicine treatments are one of the most common approaches currently being studied in clinical trials by biotech companies and other researchers for COVID patients.  Four of the major cell therapies that are presently undergoing …Read More