July 13, 2020

The Niche

Knoepfler lab stem cell blog

retinal pigmented epithelial cells

3 min read

Do stem cells for vision loss offer real hope? I believe so, but it’s a long road and must be done right. A new paper in this area generated some buzz on top of an earlier recent pub (mentioned in this post) just a week or so ago about the potential of stem cells for vision loss. The new paper is entitled, “A bioengineered retinal pigment epithelial monolayer for advanced, dry age-related macular degeneration” and is Kashani, et al. They generated special eye cells called retinal …Read More

1 min read

Some good news today as the pioneering induced pluripotent stem (IPS) cell trial led by Dr. Masayo Takahashi will resume. This clinical study with a focus on macular degeneration has been on hold for quite some time due to regulatory changes in Japan. There had also been concerns over mutations in the 2nd patient’s IPS cell product. As previous signs had indicated, the new clinical work will have an allogeneic focus, most likely drawing IPS cells from a bank. According to a Japan Times …Read More

3 min read

As many of you know, the pioneering, first of its kind IPS cell clinical study in Japan has been suspended as I first blogged about here.2020 Update: I believe a version of this study is ongoing. In the comments section of that blog post there has been a helpful overall discussion that has involved Dr. Masayo Takahashi, the leader of the IPS cell trial. It is great that Dr. Takahashi has been participating in this discussion and I commend her for that openness. This …Read More

2 min read

The pioneering induced pluripotent stem cell (IPSC) clinical study in Japan led by top stem cell clinical researcher Dr. Masayo Takahashi has been stopped reports the WSJ in Japan. This development is confirmed by other sources and in a PDF report by RIKEN (in Japanese here). One patient was transplanted in September 2014 with their own IPSC-derived retinal pigment epithelial cells (using an innovative RPE sheet, see image) for treatment of macular degeneration. The study then moved on to a possible second patient, whose IPSC did …Read More