Sustained remission of multiple myeloma achieved after personalized cellular therapy

September 10, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 

A multiple myeloma patient whose cancer had stopped responding after nine different treatment regimens experienced a complete remission after receiving an investigational personalized cellular therapy known as CTL019 developed by a team at the University of Pennsylvania. The investigational treatment was combined with chemotherapy and an autologous stem cell transplant – a new strategy designed to target and kill the cells that give rise to myeloma cells.

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Pitt/McGowan Institute team discovers stem cells in the esophagus

October 17, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

Despite previous indications to the contrary, the esophagus does have its own pool of stem cells, said researchers from the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine in an animal study published online today in Cell Reports. The findings could lead to new insights into the development and treatment of esophageal cancer and the precancerous condition known as Barrett’s esophagus.

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Stem cells reveal how illness-linked genetic variation affects neurons

August 17, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

A genetic variation linked to schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and severe depression wreaks havoc on connections among neurons in the developing brain, a team of researchers reports. The study, led by Guo-li Ming, M.D., Ph.D., and Hongjun Song, Ph.D., of the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and described online Aug. 17 in the journal Nature, used stem cells generated from people with and without mental illness to observe the effects of a rare and pernicious genetic variation on young brain cells. The results add to evidence that several major mental illnesses have common roots in faulty “wiring” during early brain development.

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Researchers at Penn uncover mechanism behind blood stem cells’ longevity

November 27, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

The blood stem cells that live in bone marrow are at the top of a complex family tree. Such stem cells split and divide down various pathways that ultimately produce red cells, white cells and platelets. These “daughter” cells must be produced at a rate of about one million per second to constantly replenish the body’s blood supply.

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USC study identifies mechanism that makes ordinary stem cells create tumors

November 9, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

A new study from the Ostrow School of Dentistry published in Cell Stem Cell illustrates how changes in cell signaling can cause ordinary stem cells in the jaw to start forming benign but potentially harmful tumors.

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Penn study reveals protein that protects nucleus also regulates stem cell differentiation

September 2, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

The human body has hundreds of different cell types, all with the same basic DNA, and all of which can ultimately be traced back to identical stem cells. Despite this fundamental similarity, a bone cell has little in common with a brain cell when it comes to appearance or function. The fact that bone is rigid and mechanically distinct from soft fat or brain had been speculated to play some role in differentiation to new cells in those parts of the body, but mechanisms have been unclear.

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Common stem cell in heart and lung development explains adaption for life on land

July 21, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

The evolution of adaptations for life on land have long puzzled biologists – are feathers descendents of dinosaur scales, how did arms and legs evolve from fins, and from what ancient fish organ did the lung evolve?

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Pluripotent cells from pancreatic cancer cells first human model of cancer’s progression

June 21, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

Pancreatic cancer carries a dismal prognosis. According to the National Cancer Institute, the overall five-year relative survival for 2003-2009 was 6 percent.

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Penn research shows way to improve stem cells’ cartilage formation

June 4, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

Cartilage injuries are difficult to repair. Current surgical options generally involve taking a piece from another part of the injured joint and patching over the damaged area, but this approach involves damaging healthy cartilage, and a person’s cartilage may still deteriorate with age.

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Turning human stem cells into brain cells sheds light on neural development

May 2, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

Medical researchers have manipulated human stem cells into producing types of brain cells known to play important roles in neurodevelopmental disorders such as epilepsy, schizophrenia and autism. The new model cell system allows neuroscientists to investigate normal brain development, as well as to identify specific disruptions in biological signals that may contribute to neuropsychiatric diseases.

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