August 6, 2020

The Niche

Knoepfler lab stem cell blog

Paul Knoepfler

8 min read

Some readers suggested earlier this year that I look into a clinic firm called ‘Stem Cell Centers’ with its owner Travis Autor. I didn’t have time to do much since I’ve been very busy in the lab before the state Attorney Generals of Iowa and Nebraska sued them based on a number of allegations including in the Iowa case for fraud. This is a very significant development for the field. The suits focus both on medically unproven and non-FDA approved stem cells and exosomes. …Read More

3 min read

Here are our weekly recommended regenerative medicine and other notable science reads including a few things on COVID. It’s been quite an interesting week. “Junk DNA” is not so junky, role in differentiation NIH scientists showed how ancient retroviral genes, or “junk DNA”, may play a role in helping stem cells decide to become neurons. This work is from the Nath lab, NIH/NINDS. You can see a YouTube video above on the work and an artistic rendering of some of what the authors think is going …Read More

5 min read

The biotech Mesoblast is starting an expanded access study of its stem cell product for kids with a severe offshoot of COVID-19. The cellular drug in this case is remestemcel-L (more below). While most children fare better than adults in dealing with COVID-19, the rare subset of kids with COVID-19 for this study have more severe disease than the average COVID patient and some die. Physicians need more potential treatment options here for these children. In that sense one could argue that testing more new …Read More

3 min read

My lab’s new paper in Communications Biology focused on high-grade pediatric glioma that have mutant histone variant H3.3 and we did something fairly novel that we are calling reciprocal CRISPR. Kids with these tumors have a near zero survival rate within a few years of diagnosis so we as a field desperately need something new to give them and their families real hope. Our paper is entitled, “Reciprocal H3.3 gene editing identifies K27M and G34R mechanisms in pediatric glioma including NOTCH signaling.” What we did in …Read More