COVID-19

Thoughts on death of stem cell clinic leader Dr. Mark Berman

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Over the past dozen years as I’ve written about stem cell clinics here on The Niche I’ve gotten to know many of those running the clinics including Dr. Mark Berman of Beverly Hills. It was therefore kind of a shock to learn that Berman died of last month. Michael Hiltzik of the LA Times reported …

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Stem cells for MS & other weekly reads: CRISPR, COVID & a bat cave, Huntington’s

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About 1 million people are living with multiple sclerosis in the U.S. alone with millions of other cases around the world so a huge effort has gone into trying to find new approaches to the disease including stem cells for MS. We’ll start our weekly recommended reads by talking about a new paper on MS …

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Top stem cell stories of 2021: COVID, diabetes, human embryos, clinics in court

regenerative medicine, stem cells 2021

The past year was all over the place for the stem cell and regenerative medicine field. As you can see in my scoring of my 21 predictions for 2021, quite a few things were surprises in terms of what did and didn’t happen. Here’s an overview of the top stories of the year in our …

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Explainer on 293 or HEK cells and their use in COVID vaccines

293 cells Knoepfler Lab

A type of human cells used in research called HEK cells or 293s has been much in the news lately, mainly related to COVID-19 vaccine research. There seem to be many misunderstandings about 293 cells so I thought I’d do this post to clear things up. I’ve been working with these cells for almost 3 decades …

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Recommended reads: Bik, FDA letter, gecko cancer model, David Baltimore on COVID origin

gecko cancer

What can a gecko possibly teach us about skin cancer? Read on. It’s fun when a week’s worth of science reading covers so much territory including COVID-19, geckos that get cancer, a research misconduct sleuth, an FDA letter, and more. Baltimore weighs in on COVID lab origin idea Caltech has a very interesting interview with …

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COVID Traps Alveoli Cells in a Curious Progenitor State, Squelching Lung Regeneration

normal lung alveoli indicating examples at1 and at2 cells

Mere weeks into the COVID pandemic, stunning graphics began to appear depicting the path of devastation of SARS-CoV-2 through a human lung. It’s only recently that we’ve come to understand what, exactly, is happening on a cellular level. The new view is thanks to single-cell RNA-sequencing, which analyzes the abundance of messenger RNAs in individual …

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FDA warns Joseph Mercola on COVID-19 claims

joseph mercola and unproven stem cells

Those of you following the arena of unproven stem cells might recognize the name Dr. Joseph Mercola. He’s a promoter of alternative medicine. Over the years his name has also popped related to the marketing of unproven stem cell offerings in various ways. Now the FDA has warned Joseph Mercola on what it says are unapproved …

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Recommended reads: stem cells on the brain, heart, COVID

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There are weeks when it seems like papers on stem cells keep popping up. It can be a challenge to keep up with reading all the papers you want to read. Other times it is cell biology news that keeps breaking. The big news of the past week or so was unfortunately the concerning development …

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Fact-check: F grade for irresponsible stem cell COVID-19 cure piece

vitro biopharma stem cells covid 19

At times there’s been seriously bad journalism covering COVID-19 itself including implications of various things being a COVID cure. Of course, media coverage of stem cell research itself sometimes ends up being a train-wreck of hype too. More recently we’ve seen irresponsible journalism also around the specific idea of stem cells for COVID-19, but sometimes …

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Lawmaker indicted for selling fake stem cells for COVID & more

patricia derges indictment for fake stem cells sm

A grand jury indicted Missouri state representative and assistant physician Patricia Derges for allegedly selling and injecting patients with fake stem cells. The injection was reportedly just of amniotic fluid, but Derges allegedly claimed it was a stem cell treatment. NBC News was one of several media outlets that broke the story here after the …

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