Right Turn: My question to Paul Knoepfler: Do you ever sleep?

Author: Stacey Johnson, 03/10/17

Paul Knoepfler, already well known for his prolific blogging at The Niche and for his role as a stem cell educator and tireless patient advocate – award winning no less – has taken on another project. Ask him a question about stem cells and you may get a live response. On February 26th, Dr. Knoepfler,…Read more

Why do stroke regenerative therapies fail to reach the clinic?

Author: Samantha Payne, 03/07/17

The author of the popular Seven Habits of Highly Effective People book, Steven R. Covery, said “strength lies in differences, not in similarities.” While this may be helpful advice for improving your personal life, researchers are learning that differences in preclinical studies are weakening the ability to translate effective therapies to the clinic. While one…Read more

Right Turn: Raising awareness about spinal cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) leak

Author: Stacey Johnson, 03/03/17

Have you heard of spinal cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) leak? No? That’s why the Spinal Cerebrospinal Fluid (CSF) Leak Foundation, established in June 2014, is holding its first educational campaign (Feb. 27-March 3, 2017) to raise awareness of spinal CSF leak, an underdiagnosed cause of headaches that are easily treated and cured. If you suffer from…Read more

Interspecies generation of insulin producing cells now a reality

Author: David Kent, 03/01/17

From science fiction novelists through to medical doctors and industry leaders, a huge amount of attention has been given to the idea of growing human organs for transplantation in large farm animals like pigs and sheep. The need for organs to transplant into patients is one driving motivation (~5000 patients waiting in Canada alone), but…Read more

Right Turn: New stem cell product for ALS seeking approval in Canada

Author: Stacey Johnson, 02/24/17

This week, BrainStorm Cell Therapeutics issued a news release announcing its intent to seek early regulatory approval to distribute its Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) product to patients in Canada. This news was eagerly received by patient groups in Canada and internationally. ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig’s Disease, is a progressive neuromuscular disease in which…Read more

If your body isn’t healing, your partner’s genes might be to blame

Author: Jovana Drinjakovic, 02/22/17

Choosing the right partner in life can help overcome its many pitfalls and challenges. But what if that partner could also influence your health in totally unexpected ways—what if their genes, and not only yours, are at play? This, at least, seems to be the case in mice where the health of one mouse is…Read more

Right Turn: Checking in on Research2Reality

Author: Stacey Johnson, 02/17/17

Research2Reality will soon be celebrating its 2nd anniversary. I first wrote about it when it launched and was excited by its mission to highlight the work of scientists across Canada, from a variety of disciplines, and make their research interesting and understandable to a non-expert audience. Through videos and blogs, Research2Reality is “shining a light…Read more

Cells…in a box

Author: Guest, 02/13/17

Heather Blumenthal has been writing about health and health research for more than 20 years and never loses her fascination with the advances Canadian researchers are making. You can reach her at hblumenthal@sympatico.ca It’s like magic – insert a cancer patient’s blood cells in one end and out the other end come T-cells adapted for…Read more

Right Turn: Synthetic biology predicted to become a huge industry

Author: Stacey Johnson, 02/10/17

There is a trend in the regenerative medicine field to include gene therapies when describing the work being performed by academics and industry, as in “cell and gene therapies.” The wider definition better reflects how the industry is evolving and acknowledges the dual focus. I expect the same may happen with synthetic biology’s role in…Read more

Learning About Industry from the Insiders at Phacilitate Cell and Gene Therapy World 2017

Author: Nicole Forgione, 02/08/17

In January, I attended Phacilitate’s Cell and Gene Therapy World in Miami, Florida. At this meeting industry leaders from around the world gather to discuss manufacturing, regulation and adoption of cell and gene therapies (C&GT). This was my first industry-focused conference, and it was a great chance to learn the ropes from experienced players in…Read more