January 23, 2021

The Niche

Trusted stem cell blog & resources

Parkinson’s Disease

2 min read

Over time I seem to collect more upbeat stories about stem cells and regenerative medicine as well as cool publications  so today’s “good news” post is a collection of these kinds of things plus one example of huge science hype. Here’s a list of past such upbeat posts. The preclinical good news in rats from my graduate alma mater UCSD, ‘New Injection Technique May Boost Spinal Cord Injury Repair Efforts‘ via stem cells. Here’s the actual Stem Cells Translational Medicine pub.from a team led …Read More

3 min read

By Jeanne Loring What can you do with cells that live forever and can make every cell type in the body?  The answer is: remarkable things, as new reports of clinical trials using cell types derived from pluripotent stem cells indicate. Pluripotent stem cells are either derived from embryos donated from IVF procedures (human embryonic stem cells- hESCs) or from cells provided by a person, usually blood or skin (induced pluripotent stem cells- iPSCs).  The stem cells are never used for transplantation; instead, they …Read More

3 min read

In Parkinson’s Disease patients develop neurological dysfunction as they lose a special kind of brain cell called dopaminergic (or dopamine) neurons. While a number of different approaches to this disease have been studied for decades, nothing has proven particularly successful in slowing its progression. As a result there has been a big need for novel thinking about how to tackle Parkinson’s Disease including via stem cells. One of the most exciting ideas has been to use human induced pluripotent stem cells (hIPSC) or human embryonic …Read More

2 min read

A much-anticipated induced pluripotent stem (IPS) cell trial for Parkinson’s Disease reportedly will soon launch led by Professor Jun Takahashi. The news broke on Yahoo Japan, which included an unusual number of appropriately sober statements regarding the trial, even though it is an exciting trial as well, compared to most media stories on stem cells. Parkinson’s Disease is a result of a loss of dopaminergic neurons in the brain so it is a particularly attractive target disease for stem cells, which can be readily …Read More

2 min read

One of the most famous living biological scientists, Sir Ian Wilmut, just announced that he has Parkinson’s Disease. I wish him the best in dealing with this illness. Wilmut is very well-known for having cloned the first mammal, Dolly the Sheep. This work followed on the earlier breakthrough by Sir John Gurdon of cloning the first vertebrate with his work in frogs. it just occurred to me: I’m not sure if the first cloned frog had a name! Over the years there has been …Read More

5 min read

I invited Nobel Laureate Shinya Yamanaka to do an interview on the future of clinical translation of induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSC). He provides some intriguing new insights into the iPSC field and the broader stem cell arena. PK: The Takahashi Team’s active Clinical Study using iPSCs to make RPEs to treat Macular Degeneration has generated a great deal of excitement. Can you please share your perspectives on the importance of this work and the team involved?  SY: This is the first study to apply …Read More

2 min read

Is a treatment based on stem cells for Parkinson’s Disease on the horizon? A Japanese team of researchers led by Dr. Jun Takahashi, professor at Kyoto University is reportedly aiming to start on human studies of an induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cell-based treatment for Parkinson’s Disease (PD) as early as fiscal year (FY) 2014. In Japan the FY runs from April 1-March 31 so FY2014 would begin in about 10 months. That is still remarkably fast and encouraging in the battle against PD. It …Read More