journal club

Monkey human embryo chimera Cell paper: exciting, ethically complex direction

human embryo chimera

A new Cell paper from an international team led by Juan Carlos Izpisua Belmonte pushes human embryo chimera embryo research further than ever before. It is both exciting work and raises many complex bioethics questions at the same time. What is a human embryo chimera? By way of background, chimeric human embryos contain a mixture …

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Journal club: Jaenisch lab paper on epigenetic CRISPR-Cas9 rescue of Fragile X in a dish

Liu-et-al.-Figure-6C-Fragile-X-CRISPR-Cell-e1519673510685

There’s much more to CRISPR-Cas9 than just gene editing and a new paper from the lab of Rudy Jaenisch in Cell highlights that in an exciting way. It reports epigenetic reversal of a Fragile X Syndrome phenotype in induced pluripotent stem cell (IPSC) neurons. Fragile X Syndrome is a neurological disorder in boys resulting from CGG repeat …

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CRISPR to make IPS cells: review of new Ding lab paper

Liu-et-al-Cell-Stem-Cell-IPS-cells-2018

CRISPR and IPS cells are two of my favorite things so when they come together as in a cool, new paper from Sheng Ding’s lab, I’m excited to read it and curious as to what the scoop is. Since 2006-2007 when mouse and human reprogramming were first reported, many different methods have been explored to …

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Review of Nature paper: stem cell exosomes on the brain and aging

mouse-hypothalamus-brain-and-aging

Is there a stem cell connection between the brain and aging? Could a type of brain stem cell or the exosomes it secretes control whole body aging? A recent big Nature article from the lab of Dongcheng Cai argues an emphatic “Yes” to these questions, at least in mice. In the Zhang, et al paper, entitled …

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Review of Mitalipov paper CRISPR’ing human embryos: transformative work on the edge

Human-embryo-CRISPR

In the same way perhaps that some excited relatives or parents-to-be both gush and worry about a baby before it is even born, our field has been transfixed for a week by the Mitalipov paper on CRISPR’ing human embryos even though the paper just now came out. Now that the paper is out, we can …

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Journal club review of new CRISPR ‘lots of off-target activity’ mouse paper

CRISPR-mutations-Figure-1a

A new, brief study in mice from the Vinit Mahajan lab argues CRISPR can have very large numbers of off-target sites. Their paper is entitled “Unexpected mutations after CRISPR–Cas9 editing in vivo” and was published in Nature Methods.This work has garnered a lot of attention in the media. Let’s take a journal club review kind of approach …

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Quick journal club on IPSC anti-aging paper: cool, but outstanding questions

IPSC-anti-aging-paper

A new Cell paper from Juan Carlos Izpisua Berlmonte’s group has made headlines about anti-aging across the globe because it suggests that the four core induced pluripotent stem cell (IPSC) factors use by Shinya Yamanaka to make IPSC can reverse aging. I’ve pasted the graphical abstract from the paper below and done a quick journal club style …

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Review of Centeno MSC safety paper: without controls, conclusions muted

Centeno-Table-3

The number of people around the world being injected with stem cells every day has never been higher and the heterogeneous group of medical providers doing these procedures is also at or near its highest level ever. The cells used are also highly variable as are the procedures themselves, but most of these cells fall under the …

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Mitalipov Nature pub review: IPSC & SCNT for mitochondrial disease

Mitalipov-IPSC-paper

In a new, thought-provoking paper today in Nature, Shoukhrat Mitalipov and a multi-institutional team report a significant advance toward potential novel ways to treat mitochondrial diseases. What are these illnesses? Mitochondrial diseases are rare, but devastating disorders caused by genetic mutations. Today they are largely impossible to treat in meaningful ways other than palliative care. Some …

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A quartet of recent cool cell biology papers

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Cell biology research never ceases to surprise with its innovations. Here are four recent papers that strike me as interesting. YAP1 Regulates OCT4 Activity and SOX2 Expression to Facilitate Self-Renewal and Vascular Mimicry of Stem-Like Cells. Stem Cells. Namrata Bora-Singhal, Jonathan Nguyen, Courtney Schaal, Deepak Perumal, Sandeep Singh, Domenico Coppola and Srikumar Chellappan. High burden and pervasive …

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