Signals Blog

There are a multitude of ways to stay informed about research trends and advances in the field. Obvious ones, for a researcher or trainee are lab or journal club meetings, conferences, or journal subscriptions. Then there’s the online world, including any number of news aggregators, blogs and twitter — Science recently published an article of the top 50 science stars of Twitter, inspired by a controversial “Kardashian index” to compare a scientist’s number of Twitter followers with number of citations; there is much that has and can be said about this, but I’ll leave this digression for another day.

Somehow, information gathering via audio, i.e. podcasts or radio, rarely gets into the top lists; supporters of the VARK learning theory will no doubt have an explanation for this. And perhaps they’re right: In the year and a half that we’ve been doing Right Turn, we’ve only profiled audio (as opposed to visual) once or twice (though some of this can be explained by how easy it is to embed a youtube video into our blog platform). So, today, a small remedy for all the audio learners out there, or for people who use daily commutes, plane trips, or their workouts to catch up on what’s happening in the stem cell world.

The Stem Cell Podcast has been producing interesting, entertaining and often thought-provoking podcast summaries of publications, case studies and stem cell news since September 20, 2013 — Happy First Anniversary, Stem Cell Podcast! In that year, they’ve produced 27 episodes, each an hour+ long and including an introductory recap of current publications and news from series’ cohosts and creators, Christopher Fasano and Yosif Ganat, followed by a featured interview. They’ve pulled in some “big fish” for these interviews and covered a range of topics, including more recently STAP, pluripotency, MS and the vascular niche. Take an hour or so, and get an earful of stem cells. (For us visual people, I’ve included a linked screen grab of the podcast home page.)


Our regular feature, Right Turn, showcases the “lighter” side of stem cells and regenerative medicine. Every Friday, we will bring you cartoons, photos, videos and other content that may be just as thought provoking as the written submissions that you are used to finding here, but they definitely won’t be blogs.

As always, we welcome your feedback and we also welcome suitable submissions. Be creative! Use the right (!) side of your brain. Make us laugh! Let’s see if we can make this new direction a positive one for all of us. Send your submission to info(at)

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Lisa Willemse

Lisa Willemse

Lisa is a science communicator with 15+ years' experience in the fields of regenerative medicine, child development and technology. She launched this blog (first as the Stem Cell Network Blog) in 2009, and served as co-editor until April 2015. She is currently the Senior Communications Advisor for the Ontario Institute for Regenerative Medicine and has recently contributed to Motherboard, Science Borealis and the Genome Alberta and Canadian Blood Services blogs. Follow her on Twitter and Medium @WillemseLA.