Archive for March, 2014

Right Turn: Stripping down to the muscle

Author: Lisa Willemse, 03/28/14

> Michael Rudnicki has been studying muscle biology for a long time… all the way back to his days as a graduate student. In this time, he’s contributed greatly to our understanding about muscle formation and the molecular “switches” that guide a stem cell’s decision to develop down the pathway towards muscle or brown fat….Read more

Right Turn: Lab parodies to cell-ebrate spring

Author: Stacey Johnson, 03/21/14

. Hopefully this is a happy Friday for you and Mother Nature has sent you a healthy dose of spring to acknowledge the date on the calendar. Regardless, whether you are rejoicing in warmer temperatures and reveling in bird song or cursing vile weather as you layer appropriately, Right Turn is feeling optimistic and has…Read more

Immunology and insider dealing: How macrophages trick your body into accepting biomaterials

Author: Holly Wobma, 03/18/14

> I’d like to make an unusual proposition. It’s occurred to me that our bodies are kind of snobs. Personality aside, our bodies are extremely particular. They reject tons of bacteria and viruses, while accepting others. They reject foreign tissues but can sometimes be coaxed into accepting them when bribed with medications. I suppose you…Read more

Right Turn: Eye candy, a.k.a. retinal stem cells

Author: Lisa Willemse, 03/14/14

> The eye is a complicated, fascinating  and important organ. Historical records indicate that the Hindus of ancient India began performing cataract surgeries as early as the fifth century BC and that both the Egyptian and Greek civilizations had developed procedures for treating various forms of blindness. Two thousand years later, we continue to look…Read more

Update from the Clinic: February

Author: Mark Curtis, 03/11/14

. Welcome to your update from the clinic for the month of February!  OncoMed is the leader in news this month with various Phase 1b trials for its cancer stem cell-targeting fusion protein. Immunocellular Therapeutics and StemCells Inc. file orphan drug designations with the European Medicines Agency and FDA for their respective cell therapies. Read…Read more

Right Turn: Heart in a box – are we there yet?

Author: Roshan Yoganathan, 03/07/14

. I’m not sure many of you are die-hard biomaterial fans like me, but there was a shot heard around the biomaterial world when Canada’s very own Professor Michael Sefton, at the University of Toronto, proposed creating a heart in a box. He made the claim nearly ten years ago. I bring this up now…Read more

Missed opportunities: media, celebrities, and BRCA1 screening

Author: Sara M. Nolte, 03/04/14

> A little while ago, I wrote a post about the BRCA1 gene and its role in breast cancer, and suggested that Angelina Jolie’s mastectomy reveal was a missed opportunity to provide information about hereditary breast cancer. I have since wondered what did we get out of the extensive coverage of Jolie’s news? Have there…Read more