Q&A video with Paul Episode 2: stem cell & CRISPR questions answered

This is the second in a series of videos I’m doing where I answer questions about the stem cell field. You can see the Episode 1 video here.

Today I tackle more questions on the stem cell field. If you have more stem cell questions, let me know and I’ll try to answer them next time.

One reader asked me about stem cells for stroke and about one company, Athersys, in particular, but I haven’t had time to tackle that one in such a way as to do it justice so stay tuned on that good question.

I realized after the fact that regarding stem cell epigenetics I should have said broadly that this is a process of regulation of gene expression.

Q&A video with Paul Episode 1: your stem cell questions answered

Where is the stem cell field now and where the heck is it heading? There are hundreds of questions.

Readers often email me questions or leave them as comments. It’s not unusual to get questions about CRISPR as well.

As time permits, I’m hoping once or twice a month on Sundays to post a video answering some reader questions. Here’s today’s February 26th edition, focused on stem cells.

You’ve got to see these fun stem cell videos including contest winner

Zehner claymation stem cell video

For the last month I’ve been accepting entries to my blog’s stem cell video contest.

This video contest follows up on other fund and educational contests I’ve run with prizes including a stem cell essay contest. In addition I do an annual Stem Cell Person of the Year Award with a $1,000 prize, which I personally pay myself to the winner. These are all part of my way of giving back and promoting the stem cell field and good citizenship (read about my 2013 winner here). Stay tuned for our Stem Cell Person of the Year 2014 event, which will have a surprising new twist.

So how did our video contest turn out?

It has been a lot of fun.

We had numerous entries out of which I picked the top four to show below. It was an especially close call between the top two winners as to who would prevail.

Congrats to Robert Zehner who has won the grand $100 prize in the form of an Amazon gift card!

I found his claymation video (above in German with English subtitles) to be captivating and just downright fun. I love the outtakes/bloopers at the end too so stay tuned for those towards the last part of the video. Admittedly, his take on the stem cell world is extremely optimistic, but his enthusiasm is contagious.

CIRM’s Todd Dubnicoff and Kevin McCormack take second prize. They also provided a very well-done entry on using iPS cells to model ALS in a dish. Well done! Their video is above.

Third places goes to Bill Pfohl, who submitted a very cool stem cell rap video (below).

Emily Easto, Communications Coordinator, at the Centre for Commercialization of Regenerative Medicine (CCRM) also entered our stem cell video contest and finished fourth.

Her video, entitled CCRM Innovations: Cell Culture Bioreactors, also really wowed me (see below).

Emily described the video this way:

I created this video in collaboration with Dr. Elizabeth Csaszar, Development Scientist at CCRM, to show how cell culture with bioreactors is an essential step on the road towards commercializing regenerative medicine therapies. I believe this to be an accessible video that accurately and effectively explains the bioreactor’s role in the future of regenerative medicine and because there are no other comparable videos on cell culture with bioreactors, it is a useful education tool as well.

All these videos are great. Thanks for entering!

Congrats to all and especially our winner, Robert!

$100 Amazon Gift Card Prize: Stem Cell Video Contest

Amazon gift card $100Want $100 to buy anything you want on Amazon and have a passion for stem cells?

Then you are the ideal person to enter this blog’s new stem cell video contest.

I’m looking for a video that will really make people think and perhaps learn something new. Outside the box thinking. Novel information. Humor. A cool new resource. A commentary or new view on things. All these would be good for this contest.

A bit controversial is a good attribute too, but outright offensive is not.

You can record the video with your phone, a camera, or whatever. The style is entirely up to you. It could be a video of you talking, someone being interview, animation, or pretty much anything having to do with stem cells.

The best video submitted will be posted here and the winner will receive a $100 Amazon gift card from me.

Email me at knoepfler@ucdavis.edu and I’ll arrange with you for transfer of the video file.


By entering you agree (whether you are chosen as the winner or not) that your entry may end up being posted on this blog and YouTube.

Entries must be original material.

The video cannot be more than 5 minutes long.

The deadline is August 13 at midnight PST. The winner will be announced within one week of the deadline via their video being posted here on this blog.

If I don’t get anything but what I view as uninteresting or otherwise not so great stuff, I reserve the right to not give out an award, but that’s not at all what I’m hoping or expecting will happen.

If there is more than one guest blog post entry, I may award multiple prizes. That would make me happy!

Good luck!

Gibco Gets its Geek on With Funny Stem Cell Promo Video

Life Technologies makes all kind of great stem cell stuff. They are a sponsor on this website and they are very excited about stem cell technology.

Gibco stem cell video take 1

Life’s media brand, Gibco, has a hilarious new video out on YouTube on stem cells and media (the image right below here is a live video link–just click on it to view the video).

The video stars a cartoon personified stem cell character, named, well, Stem Cell.

The video gets really funny in a geeky way as it parodies all kinds of pop culture “media” including advertising and movies including Lord of the Rings.

The video also parodies the ridiculous “most interesting man in the world” Dos Equis beer commercials and the Fonz from Happy Days.

Gibco stem video Take 2

I find videos on stem cells to be really interesting, even if they are ads as in this case.

Clearly some people put a lot of work and creativity into this video. It shows by how awesome it turned out. I wish I saw more stem cell sciency videos that were this funny, creative, and captivating.

Disclosure: I’m not getting paid for this blog post. It’s not a sponsored post.