Tag Archives: Immune system

Bioengineered organs may hold the future for transplants

Bioengineered organs may redefine transplants for humans someday, and even allow damaged organs to regenerate.

Northwestern University researchers are in the beginning stages of bioengineering tissues and entire organs from stem cells of adult rats and mice, said Dr. Jenny Zhang. Zhang directs the Microsurgical Core within the Comprehensive Transplant Center at Feinberg.

Once engineered, Zhang said her team will be able to test the functionality of such organs as transplants in the rodents. For now, Zhang and fellow researchers are using a biodegradable scaffold, a kind-of-skeleton of an organ with all living cells removed, to test the model.

By developing a
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UCLA researchers demonstrate that stem cells can be engineered to kill HIV

Image by Trygve.u via Flickr

Drs. Scott Kitchen, Zoran Galic, Jerry Zack of the UCLA Broad Stem Cell Research Center and AIDS Institute and their colleagues demonstrated for the first time that human blood stem cells can be engineered into cells that can target and kill HIV-infected cells. The process could potentially be used against a range of chronic viral diseases.

The study, published Dec. 7 in the-peer reviewed online journal PLoS ONE, provides proof-of-principle, a demonstration of feasibility, that human stem cells can be engineered into the equivalent of a genetic vaccine.

“We have demonstrated in this proof-of-principle study that
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USA – MS: Autologous Stem Cell Transplants, Visible Progress in 8 of 10 Patients

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Transplanting stem cells from one’s own bone marrow (autologous stem cell transplants) improves the symptoms of muscular sclerosis (MS), and in some cases the neurological disease actually regressed. These are the encouraging results obtained from a small study performed on 21 remittent MS patients by a group from the Northwestern University School of Medicine in Chicago and published in Lancet Neurology. “All of the patients,” said the neurologists, “witnessed an improvement in their conditions three years after the stem cell transplants were performed. Of these, 81pct benefited from visible progress, measured in terms of
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How to cure cancer using stem cells

Historic Hurd Hall on Johns Hopkins’ East Baltimore campus was filled to capacity on Jan. 13 with students, faculty and staff waiting to hear five scientists—all in the early part of their careers—describe their novel ideas on how to cure metastatic cancer.

The five were finalists, chosen from among 44 entrants, in a competition on creative thinking named for John Rangos Sr., chairman of the Rangos Family Foundation, who funded the awards. Each scientist had 10 minutes to present his or her idea and answer questions from a panel of faculty judges, who would select the winners based on the
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Using the immune system to better stem cell transplant results

A novel therapy in the early stages of development at Virginia Commonwealth University Massey Cancer Center shows promise in providing lasting protection against the progression of multiple myeloma following a stem cell transplant by making the cancer cells easier targets for the immune system.

Outlined in the British Journal of Hematology, the Phase II clinical trial was led by Amir Toor, M.D., hematologist-oncologist in the Bone Marrow Transplant Program and research member of the Developmental Therapeutics program at VCU Massey Cancer Center. The multi-phased therapy first treats patients with a combination of the drugs azacitidine and lenalidomide. Azacitidine
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