Archive for September, 2015

Cell Therapy Deal Review: August

Author: Mark Curtis, 09/30/15

. Welcome to your cell therapy deal review for the month of August. Synthetic biology giant Intrexon closed a large financing; Immune Design announced a collaboration to pair its viral-based immunotherapy platform with a checkpoint inhibitor; and, NantKwest received a discovery grant to investigate NeukoPlastTM in prostate cancer. In other news we saw earnings reported,…Read more

Update from the Clinic: August

Author: Mark Curtis, 09/29/15

. Welcome to your Update from the Clinic for the month of August. The adult stem cell community enjoyed a much needed confidence boost after TiGenix announced its Phase 3 trial hit its primary endpoint. Northwest confirmed its Phase 3 trial of DCVax in glioblastoma is still underway despite rumours that the trial had been…Read more

From bench to bedside: clinical trials and cancer drug approval in Canada

Author: Sara M. Nolte, 09/28/15

. Much of what we discuss here on Signals is what’s going on in the lab. I’ve definitely done my share of promoting basic science research in the cancer stem cell field (here and here). By now you, and almost everyone else, must be wondering why these “wonder drugs” aren’t being used yet. Well, it…Read more

Right Turn: The why and what of clinical trials

Author: Stacey Johnson, 09/25/15

. Not quite daily, but often enough to have a prepared message at the ready, I get inquiries from people seeking a stem cell treatment for themselves or loved ones who suffer from one disease/condition or another. (When I’m not working on Signals, I am responsible for communications at CCRM and it’s in that capacity…Read more

The tiny fingers that touch stem cells

Author: David Kent, 09/22/15

. I was reading Nature the other day and came across a neat article from Yukikio Yamashita’s group at the University of Michigan entitled Nanotubes mediate niche–stem-cell signalling in the Drosophila testis. It may not sound interesting to our average reader, but the cool thing – and presumably what the Nature editors and reviewers enjoyed…Read more

Right Turn: Kevin McCormack in your face

Author: Stacey Johnson, 09/18/15

. Ever since Kevin McCormack, Director of Communications at the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM), produced the first episode of “Stem Cells in Your Face,” I’ve been waiting for the sequel. If you, like me, are a fan, then the wait is over. (Truthfully, it’s been available since May. Just as well I didn’t…Read more

You are my day, my night, and forever my spleen (?)

Author: Holly Wobma, 09/15/15

. For linguistics enthusiasts, you might find it curious that almost every language uses anatomical metaphors in everyday speech. For example, you may have heard the phrase: “that cost an arm and a leg” or “I’d give up a kidney to [fill in blank].” To those we love we might say, “you are my heart.”…Read more

Right Turn: Back to school Part 2

Author: Stacey Johnson, 09/11/15

. University and college students have invaded Toronto in the hundreds of thousands (nearly 200,000 apparently). Not that I think this is a bad thing, as I stated last week. I recognize that this is a phenomenon seen across Canada and around the world, but with four universities and four colleges in the city, their…Read more

Micromanagement of bioethics isn’t ethical

Author: Paul Krzyzanowski, 09/10/15

. Bioethicists have had ample time this summer for self-reflection, following Steven Pinker’s op-ed in The Boston Globe that’s informally become known as the “Get out of the way” article. I’ve always found Pinker to be one of my favourite authors due to the fact his arguments are thoroughly reasoned, so I have been slightly…Read more

Get serious: Seize the moment while politicians are listening

Author: Guest, 09/09/15

. Joe Sornberger is Director of Communications Programs for the Canadian Stem Cell Foundation and author of Dreams & Due Diligence: Till and McCulloch’s Stem Cell Discovery and Legacy.   Back in the day, I toiled as a newspaper reporter, covering Parliament Hill. I was there at a Québec campaign stop during the 1993 election,…Read more