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Brief reviews of recently published articles, organized by stem cell type.

October 8, 2012 | Pluripotent Stem Cells

“Epigenetic stability, adaptability, and reversibility in human embryonic stem cells”

Human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) are known to adapt during extended periods of ­­in vitro culture, a process potentially detrimental to later differentiation ability. However, the mode of initiation of transcriptional changes and the potential for reversibility of adaptation mediated by culture...

October 8, 2012 | Pluripotent Stem Cells

“A synthetic small molecule for rapid induction of multiple pluripotency genes in mouse embryonic fibroblasts”

Reprogramming of somatic cells to induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) is known to involve the genome-wide remodelling of chromatin and it has been suggested that small molecules which can affect the chromatin landscape could be used to reactivate the endogenous pluripotency...

October 8, 2012 | Pluripotent Stem Cells

“Mouse ooplasm confers context-specific reprogramming capacity”

The mammalian oocyte mediates one of the largest periods of DNA methylation dynamics; global demethylation of the paternal genome, a process required for the establish­ment of totipotency and developmental competence (Reik et al 2011). Somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT) attempts to recapitulate this artificially...

October 1, 2012 | Endodermal Stem Cells

Original article from STEM CELLS

“The GCTM-5 Epitope Associated with the Mucin-Like Glycoprotein FCGBP Marks Progenitor Cells in Tissues of Endodermal Origin”

Markers to identify endodermal stem and progenitor cells are scarce and the identification of new...

October 1, 2012 | Pluripotent Stem Cells

Original article from STEM CELLS

“Deficient DNA Damage Response and Cell Cycle Checkpoints Lead to Accumulation of Point Mutations in hESCs”

The long term culture of human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) is known to have some detrimental effects, such as the acquirement of an abnormal karyotype,...

September 21, 2012 | Pluripotent Stem Cells

“Modulating Glypican4 Suppresses Tumorigenicity of ESCs While Preserving Self-Renewal and Pluripotency”

September 2012 — Stem cell self-renewal and differentiation are highly complex processes involving the integration of a variety of signals, both external and internal, such as soluble cytokines, growth factors, and extracellular matrix proteins which converge onto complex networks of...

September 21, 2012 | Cancer Stem Cells

‘Rai is a new regulator of neural progenitor migration and glioblastoma invasion’

September 2012 — Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) is the most common form of brain tumor yet carries an unfortunately poor prognosis owing to its aggressive nature and the high infiltrative capacity of Glioblastoma cells.   Its invasive nature makes it difficult to contain or remove surgically, and also a...

September 21, 2012 | Pluripotent Stem Cells

Huntington’s Disease (HD) is an autosomal-dominant progressive neurodegenerative disease, characterized by movement, cognitive, and emotional disorders caused by an expanded CAG repeat in exon 1 of the Huntingtin (HTT) gene resulting in an expanded polyglutamine stretch known as the polyQ region or stretch.   Generally, fewer than 36 CAG repeats in the polyQ region is observed in healthy...

September 19, 2012 | Pluripotent Stem Cells

An estimated 250 million people worldwide have a disabling hearing impairment (WHO, 2001). This figure has risen dramatically in the last 15 years due to improvements in diagnosis, increasing longevity of the population and a combination of other factors including noise/occupational induced hearing loss and ototoxicity (damage to the Cochlea or auditory nerve), particularly from the use of...

September 7, 2012 | Haematopoetic Stem Cells

Prominent Australian stem cell scientist and current Director of the California Institute of Regenerative Medicine (CIRM) Professor Alan Trounson has announced that a potential cure for HIV is about to enter human clinical trials. The treatment takes advantage of the fact that a small proportion of humans are immune to HIV as they have a specific gene mutation which disables the CCR5...