Archive for April, 2016

Right Turn: Throw away that scalpel; here comes the “biopen”

Author: Stacey Johnson, 04/29/16

Jennifer Hicks at Forbes has written about a handheld surgical device that can draw stem cells to repair cartilage so that the damaged cartilage can heal itself with its own cells. How cool is that?! The ARC Centre of Excellence for Electromaterials Science in Melbourne, Australia, has produced the biopen. It is still at the…Read more

Update from the Clinic: March

Author: Mark Curtis, 04/28/16

Welcome to your Update from the Clinic for the month of March. Undoubtedly the big news in March came from Vericel, which saw its stock double after reporting positive topline results from its Phase 2b study in heart failure. There were also some first dosings and clinical study starts. A study of Vericel’s (VCEL) ixmyelocel-T…Read more

Cell Therapy Deal Review: March

Author: Mark Curtis, 04/25/16

Welcome to your Cell Therapy Deal Review for the month of March. Cellectis continues to differentiate through a collaboration with MabQuest. PCT formed a partnership with Japanese conglomerate Hitachi. Kite partnered with Roche’s Genentech on a program for lymphoma. Cellectis (CLLS) has already separated itself from the pack with UCART19, a universal CAR product targeting…Read more

Right Turn: Autism stem cell research could use a boost

Author: Stacey Johnson, 04/22/16

While I’m sure news about autism spikes in April during the annual awareness campaign, I doubt autism is absent from the news very often. Whether parents and advocates are lobbying for more services and funding, experts and non-experts are arguing over whether vaccines cause autism or celebrities are jumping onto the awareness bandwagon, it seems…Read more

Athletes embrace stem cell therapy, for better or worse

Author: Guest, 04/18/16

Randi Druzin is an author and journalist based in Toronto. She has worked at the CBC and several other major media outlets, and has written for publications such as The New York Times and The Globe and Mail. She has also written three books. Randi first learned about regenerative medicine while researching a story on multiple…Read more

Right Turn: The wild, wacky world of animals and regenerative medicine

Author: Stacey Johnson, 04/15/16

The picture to the right is of my cat Chloe, all dressed up for her debut on Signals. Amazingly, Franklin West (University of Georgia) thinks domesticated cats (Chloe!) are the ideal vessel for saving big cats of the endangered species kind. The idea is to collect skin cells from, say, tigers and turn those cells…Read more

Mental constructions: a 3D printing approach to making miniature neural circuits

Author: Holly Wobma, 04/11/16

“You are your synapses.” [Joseph LeDoux]. I first came across this quote while working in a neurophysiology lab after my freshman year of undergraduate studies. To this day, I am amazed by its simple eloquence and the grandeur of its implications. Indeed, the idea that the essence of our experience of the world – our…Read more

Right Turn: A science book lover’s dream list

Author: Stacey Johnson, 04/08/16

I’ve written about the Canadian Science Writers’ Association (CSWA) before, in a post about good stem cell books for kids. Well, CSWA has just released its Short Lists in the 2015 Science in Society Book Awards competition, and with CBC’s Canada Reads having just completed – I’m in the middle of The Hero’s Walk and…Read more

A double duty scaffold for cell delivery to the brain

Author: Samantha Payne, 04/07/16

Neurodegenerative diseases of the brain, such as Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s, are a leading cause of disability in Canada, but despite the significant burden on patients, caregivers and the health-care system, we still lack a cure. An active area of research for these diseases is focused on the transplantation of exogenous cells to replace degenerated neurons…Read more

Right Turn: The wait is over

Author: Stacey Johnson, 04/01/16

For nearly 2 million people, the restless nights, anxious days, over-caffeinated spiral is almost over. On April 14th, Orphan Black returns with its fourth season. A few Christmases ago, I compiled a list of television shows and movies that feature stem cells in a leading or supporting role. At the time, I referred to Orphan…Read more