Archive for August, 2014

Right Turn: Lego Academics bring you into their world

Author: Peter Raaymakers, 08/29/14

> Earlier this summer, building toy makers Lego released the Research Institute: A new set that featured female minifigures in science professions, including a paleontologist, astronomer and chemist. The set may have been a response to a young girl’s plea for Lego to “make more Lego girl people and let them go on adventures and have fun,” and the Research…Read more

Is the academy worse than the fashion industry for “following the leader”?

Author: David Kent, 08/27/14

This post originally appeared on The Black Hole blog and is reprinted with permission from the author and University Affairs. I hate to admit this, but I find an incredible number of scientific papers really boring. It seems that more and more, research papers are using the same sets of sexy and expensive tools without actually…Read more

Right Turn: What do stem cells, ice and ALS have in common?

Author: Stacey Johnson, 08/22/14

. You have to be living under a rock – or perhaps spending every minute of your time culturing your cells – to be unaware of the ALS #Icebucketchallenge. Since it began on July 29 on social media, the American ALS Association has raised millions (nearly $42 million at the time of writing) in donations…Read more

Inside a cancer stem cell researcher’s toolbox: Xenotransplantation

Author: Sara M. Nolte, 08/19/14

> In previous posts, I have alluded to the fact that studying cancer in a dish (in vitro) is not optimal (here and here). Today, I give you the next essential tool in a cancer stem cell (CSC) researcher’s toolbox: xenotransplantation. Xenotransplantation is an impressive mouthful that simply means the transplantation of living cells, tissues,…Read more

Update from the Clinic: July

Author: Mark Curtis, 08/18/14

. Welcome to your Update from the Clinic for the month of July. The cancer stem cell companies were back in the news last month. OncoMed initiated its ALPINE clinical trial of Tarextumab for pancreatic cancer, while Stemline Therapeutics announced an investigational new drug (IND) for SL-401 and initiation of clinical trials in two blood…Read more

Right Turn: The creative process

Author: Lisa Willemse, 08/15/14

I’m starting this post with an image that more or less sums up my life over the past two weeks, which has been rather intensely focused on creativity. This was the second time I traveled to Banff to be part of the Science Communications program at the Banff Centre, a very worthwhile sojourn for scientists…Read more

Regenerative Medicine Deal Review: July

Author: Mark Curtis, 08/11/14

. Welcome to your deal review for the month of July. There was financing activity this past month as StemCells and Fate Therapeutics each secured $20 million in funding. Bluebird bio was busy with the acquisition of a privately-held genome editing company; clearly a strategic move to strengthen its gene therapy pipeline. Sernova was in…Read more

Right Turn: All about regeneration – navigating fact and fiction

Author: Erin Sugar, 08/08/14

. The following scene from Family Guy offers a glimpse into both the tone and subject matter of this week’s Right Turn. Being an avid lover of superheroes, monsters and all things supernatural, the topic of healing and limb regeneration has always been a subject I find vastly exciting. If you’re having trouble understanding what…Read more

Gene editing technique makes disease study almost as easy as flipping a switch

Author: Holly Wobma, 08/05/14

> Imagine you are about to interview someone, and rather than receiving a full reference letter, your candidate is described with but a single word. Do you think you’d get the whole picture? Of course you wouldn’t, but depending on the word chosen, you could make a decision. For example, “disorganized” or “unreliable” seem like…Read more