January 22, 2021

The Niche

Trusted stem cell blog & resources

advanced cell technology

5 min read

Recently I was at the World Alliance Forum in San Francisco (WAFSF), a great meeting on stem cells and regenerative medicine. WAFSF had some excellent talks and I saw one session on the use of stem cells to treat vision impairment that was particularly striking. World Alliance Forum in San Francisco (WAFSF) This session’s all-star lineup included Drs. David Hinton, Ann Tsukamoto, Henry Klassen, and Masayo Takahashi. I’m going to summarize the talks below with permission of all speakers. Note that these summaries are based on rapidly scrawled …Read More

3 min read

The stem cell biotech Advanced Cell Technology (ACT) reported new, positive data in a paper in Lancet from their clinical trials using retinal pigmented epithelial cells (RPEs) made from human embryonic stem cells (hESC) for treatment of different forms of macular degeneration (MD). The paper was entitled “Human embryonic stem cell-derived retinal pigment epithelium in patients with age-related macular degeneration and Stargardt’s macular dystrophy: follow-up of two open-label phase 1/2 studies” with first author Steven D. Schwartz and senior author Robert Lanza, CSO of ACT. These two …Read More

2 min read

Stem cell biotech BioTime announced the news today that its subsidiary Cell Cure Neurosciences (Cell Cure) has filed an IND with the FDA for an embryonic stem (ES) cell-based therapy for Dry age-related macular degeneration (AMD). The product to be tested is OpRegen, which the company indicates is “the first IND for an ES cell-based therapy developed in Israel.” Cell Cure in its PR on this IND also listed three other key bullet points: “IND filed for Phase I/IIa dose escalation trial in patients …Read More

1 min read

I was challenged to do the Ice Bucket Challenge by Roman Reed. I did it yesterday and can see it was mighty cold! Total shock, but fun. It sure wakes you up. Yeah, we have a drought but I did the big splash with tons of ice. I did the challenge in honor of patients with ALS and the ALS Foundation, patients with Spinal Muscle Atrophy (SMA) and the Gwendolyn Strong Foundation, and the St. Baldrick’s Foundation for children’s cancer research. I’ve already given …Read More

2 min read

I did a brief email Q&A interview with Dr. Bob Lanza of Advanced Cell Technology (ACT) on their new hES MSCs pre-clinical data for Multiple Sclerosis. I discussed the paper itself in a concise review yesterday here. Thanks to Dr. Lanza for doing the interview. 1. Were you surprised at the fact that the therapeutic benefit did not require engraftment or even the use of proliferative hES-MSCs? No, not at all.  MSCs usually persist for only a few days or weeks, and exert their …Read More

2 min read

There is more good news from leading stem cell biotech Advanced Cell Technology (ACT) on preclinical rodent studies using stem cells to treat mice with an MS-like condition. They published a new paper in the journal Stem Cell Reports entitled “Human ESC-Derived MSCs Outperform Bone Marrow MSCs in the Treatment of an EAE Model of Multiple Sclerosis” by Wang, et al. Note added: there’s a related interesting paper from Jeanne Loring and Tom Lane’s groups in the same issue using neural progenitors made from …Read More

4 min read

It was intriguing last week to read about another advance in somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT)-based therapeutic cloning of human embryonic stem cells (hESC). The first such work was published last year by Mitalipov’s group from OHSU. This second paper to produce so-called nuclear transfer hESC (NT-hESC) made the important advance to show that it could be done using adult and even old human somatic cells. This is a reproducible technology, which is very important. However, key challenges and concerns remain for human therapeutic cloning …Read More

3 min read

An international team of stem cell scientists has replicated human therapeutic cloning to make embryonic stem cells via somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT). The team was led by Drs. Dong Ryul Lee of CHA Stem Cell Institute in Korea and Robert Lanza of Advanced Cell Technology (ACT) and reported the advance in the Chung, et al. paper today in the journal Cell Stem Cell entitled “Human Somatic Cell Nuclear Transfer Using Adult Cells”. The cells expressed pluripotency markers (see Figure 1A at left) and …Read More