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Great news: FDA gives ACT the green light bringing hope to millions of people with blindness

advanced-cell-technology

The FDA has given Advanced Cell Technology (ACT) the go ahead to begin their clinical trial using retinal progenitor cells derived from hESC by clearing the company’s IND application, bringing hope to those with vision loss and even blindness. The trial will be a combined Phase I/II to treat Stargardt’s Macular Dystrophy and has huge …

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The trouble with teratoma: a stem cell paradox

Teratoma

The trouble with the risk of teratoma presents a stem cell paradox. Stem cells possess two traits lacking in other cells: self-renewal and pluripotency. This duo of defining functions is key to the ability of stem cells to be used to treat patients via regenerative medicine. A paradox exists because while self-renewal and pluripotency are both …

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Not ready for prime time: the three critical challenges for IPS cells

FaviconIPSCELL

If IPS cells are not ready for prime time, it is probably due to these three critical challenges for these amazing cells. TUMORIGENICITY Those of us who work with IPS cells are very excited about their potential for use in regenerative medicine therapies. One serious hurdle we have talked about in the past is tumorigenicity. …

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How many scientist bloggers does it take to change a light bulb?

Stem-Cell-Blog

One question I am frequently asked by readers and colleagues is “what other stem cell blogs or bloggers can you recommend that are written by a stem cell scientist and updated on a regular basis?” The simple but surprising answer: there are none. It’s lonely out here in cyberspace! (2020 update: The good news today …

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Why scientists must be advocates too: Jeff Sheehy

Jeff-Sheehy

CIRM Board Member, Jeff Sheehy, has a wonderful piece in Nature Medicine on why patient advocates play a critical role in decision making on research priorities (hat tip to Amy Adams who first blogged on Sheehy’s piece). Patient advocates bring a unique and valuable perspective to the table. Their role in guiding CIRM research funding …

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James Sherley of anti-ESC lawsuit calls on NIH to think like he does

James-Sherley

Dr. James Sherley, the scientist behind the lawsuit against federally-funded ES cell research, has penned an opinion piece in The Daily Caller today calling on NIH to, in his words, ‘do the right thing.’ However, what Sherley is really asking is for the NIH, other stem cell scientists, and all Americans to think like he …

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Disease Focus Series: Stem cells for HIV/AIDS

HIV-virus-lymphocyte

2020 update: This post from almost 10 years ago on the HIV pandemic and particularly the first paragraph ring differently in the context of the COVID-19 novel coronavirus pandemic. Over the last several years, there has been great concern about a possible flu pandemic around the world, but meanwhile the great pandemic of modern history, …

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Appeals Court Stays Injunction, ES cell research remains legal

judge-royce-lamberth

The BLT is reporting that the DC Circuit Appeals Court has sided with the government and has stayed Judge Lamberth’s injunction against ES cell research. Great news! And I’m happy to admit our grim predictions yesterday were wrong. The judges took the action in a  “per curiam” judgement, meaning collectively. So we will not know …

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