The body is a battle zone. Cells constantly compete with one another for space and dominance. Though the manner in which some cells win this competition is well known to be the survival of the fittest, how stem cells duke it out for space and survival is not as clear. A study on fruit flies published in the October 2 issue of Science by Johns Hopkins researchers describes how stem cells win this battle by literally sticking around.
“Our work exemplifies how one signal coordinately maintains two types of stem cells in a single niche, or microenvironment,” says Erika Matunis,
In the next three to four years, it would be possible to do DNA sequencing in just 15 minutes and design tailor-made medicines for patients, Dr Mohan Rao, director of Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology (CCMB), asserted at the annual conference of AP Cardiology Society of India on Saturday.
Based on Pharmicogenetics — a study of genetic differences in metabolic pathways which can affect individual responses to drugs — these specialized drugs will be able to combat diseases while minimizing side effects, Rao said. “We are transiting to cell-based therapy from the current chemical-based therapy.
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Perhaps in the not-too-distant future people who need “to rebuild” their prostate will be able to do so using stem cells removed from prostate tissue. This week Nature magazine reported that a group of Genetech researchers in San Francisco has isolated stem cells extracted from prostate tissue of an adult mouse and used them to generate new prostate cells in the same rat. Wei-Qiang Gao, the coordinator of the study, described the factors that made these cells, which are able to regenerate on a long term basis.
In the same study, researchers reported that they