Archive for October, 2013

Back to basics: BRCA1 and breast cancer

Author: Sara M. Nolte, 10/30/13

> May 14th, 2013 marked an important day for breast cancer awareness. This was the day Angelina Jolie revealed that she had undergone a preventive double mastectomy. Her decision was motivated by her positive screen for BRCA1, the “breast cancer gene,” and a family experience with cancer. She was quoted saying “I can tell my…Read more

EMC: Theory of regenerativity

Author: David Kent, 10/28/13

> Last Friday was the final day of the Till & McCulloch Meetings in Banff, which was a great display of collaborative stem cell projects going on across the country. I’ll emphasize again how wonderful this meeting is for getting a broad survey of research in adult and pluripotent stem cells without having to wade…Read more

Cell Therapy Industry 2027: It’s not all about therapies

Author: David Brindley, 10/25/13

. Nestled in the bosom of the Canadian Rockies, the global regenerative medicine community is assembled. Coaches laden with young investigators sporting impractically packed posters and drawn, jet lagged expressions are arriving in a steady procession. The usually sleepy pre-ski-season Banff is energized by stellar stem cell science and the expectation of its translation into…Read more

Mountains in Banff: From theoretical stem cells to the real deal

Author: Guest, 10/25/13

Guest post by Paul Knoepfler, cross-posted on This morning I particularly enjoyed a talk by Sui Huang [ed note: this talk also discussed here] focused on the application of mathematics as a tool to understand cell behavior and fate. I love this stuff! I just wish I was better at math and physics so…Read more

StemCellShorts 3: What are induced pluripotent stem cells?

Author: Ben Paylor, 10/25/13

“Canada is home to numerous stem cell discoveries and StemCellShorts is an excellent medium through which we can convey these accomplishments to Canadians and others worldwide.  The ‘shorts’ are innovative, educational and entertaining”.  — Dr. Mick Bhatia, Director and Senior Scientist at the McMaster Stem Cell and Cancer Research Institute, and Canada Research Chair in Human…Read more

Cell Therapy Industry 2027: Managing expectation through effective communication

Author: David Brindley, 10/24/13

. 9am, Day 1: IBC Cell Therapy Bioprocessing Conference (Bethesda, MD, USA): Attempting to sharpen tie, and my welcome isolation is interrupted by a lady entering the elevator and fighting for mirror space. Cue small talk: “That’s a nice tie.” “Erm, thank you.” “And what is ‘bio…processing?’” [staring at name badge]. “Oh, I thought that…Read more

Day 2 at #TMM2013: Outliers and Rebellious Cells

Author: David Kent, 10/24/13

> Day 2 of TMM2013 began with a video link shared session between this meeting here in Banff and another happening in Leipzig. It was a pretty cool idea and underscores two neat things about the Canadian Stem Cell Network and CCRM. First, despite being viewed as a national stem cell network meeting there is…Read more

Jailbreaking cell fate reprograms to multiple stem cell types says Nagy

Author: Guest, 10/24/13

Guest post by Paul Knoepfler, cross-posted on You can jailbreak your iPhone, but perhaps you can jailbreak a cell too to turn it into a stem cell. In his very cool talk up here at the Till & McCulloch Meeting on Stem Cells yesterday, Andras Nagy characterized the reprogramming process to make iPS cells as “jailbreaking”…Read more

Day 1 at #TMM2013: Hongkui Deng breaks down iPS cells

Author: David Kent, 10/23/13

> Set in the beautiful mountain setting of Banff National Park, the first hours of the Till and McCulloch meeting have not disappointed. Our morning plenary began with an excellent historical perspective from Shin-Ichi Nishikawa on the origins of blood stem cells and rolled on through an excellent series of talks on epigenetic regulation and…Read more

Cell Therapy Industry 2027: A Vernian Voyage

Author: David Brindley, 10/23/13

. The Cell Therapy Industry’s equivalent of ‘Wimbledon Fortnight,’ is upon us: ARM’s successfully delivered Meeting on the Mesa (La Jolla, CA) has served as a tantalizing hors d’oeuvre to IBC’s Cell Therapy Bioprocessing Conference (Bethesda, MD) and CCRM’s and SCN’s Till & McCulloch Meetings (Banff, Alberta). The trio of meetings are united in their…Read more