Manufacturing a cell therapy peace-keeping force, and more

Conferences, International Society for Stem Cell Research 2018 Annual Meeting, Media releases, Other

20-23 June 2018 at the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre

International Society for Stem Cell Research 2018 Annual Meeting: 2,500+ stem cell scientists from 50 countries will hear from 150+ speakers including:

Lab-grown mini-brains make new connections

Fred ‘Rusty’ Gage (USA) is making mini-brains from human stem cells in the lab. But in order for these new tissues to function, they need to become well-connected.

Fred is pioneering research to explore how transplanted human neural organoids (mini-organs) can mature into tissues with blood vessel and nerve connections. This work could lead to methods of replacing brain tissue lost to stroke or disease, and repairing spinal cords damaged by trauma.

Tracing blood back to its beginnings to tackle leukaemia

Right now, the stem cells in your bone marrow are making one billion new red blood cells per minute. Andrew Elefanty (Australia) is studying both embryonic stem cells and more specialised blood-forming stem cells to reveal how our body makes blood and what leads to leukaemia and other blood diseases. He will reveal his team’s latest insights.

What zebrafish can teach us about muscle injury recovery

Peter Currie (Australia) is exploring how zebrafish (Danio rerio) regrow muscle. His focus is on the mechanisms of skeletal muscle regeneration by means of self-renewing ‘satellite’ stem cells. He and colleagues established a zebrafish muscle stem cell population, comparable to the satellite cells of mammals. They have mapped the full process of muscle recovery, from injury to fibre replacement.

How chemicals control stem cells: to stop Zika, to become pancreas cells, or to prevent cancers

Shuibing Chen (USA) is exploring the chemical cocktails that shape different futures for stem cells. Her research used libraries of thousands of chemicals to see whether specific chemical combinations could be used to control the types of cells made from stem cells in the lab.

She has identified the various chemicals that direct stem cells to become specific cell types, such as those of the pancreas and heart, inhibit the effects of the Zika virus on brain stem cells, prevent diabetes, and fight colorectal and pancreatic cancers.

New cell therapy a life-saving peacemaker between warring patient and donor cells

A new factory-made stem cell product has been shown to dramatically increase the 100-day survival rates of children with an often-fatal complication of bone marrow transplants—acute graft versus host disease (GVHD). Australian stem cell scientist and Mesoblast CEO Silviu Itescu is announcing the results of a Phase 3 clinical trial treating 55 children suffering from the most severe form of GVHD, a condition in which the patient’s white blood cells attack the transplanted donor cells.

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