Stem Cell Injections for Osteoarthritic Knees

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Some friends recently asked me about getting stem cell injections for painful knees with osteoarthritis (Figure 1). Should they push their doctors for this treatment? Were they, and consequently their stem cells, going to be too old if they waited? I started my investigation at PubMed, searching for “stem cells” and “osteoarthritis,” which produced 1249 … Read moreStem Cell Injections for Osteoarthritic Knees

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Virally Modified Cells Regenerate Normal Skin

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Stem cells hold great promise for medical intervention. However, it has been difficult to leverage these cells effectively. In the study by Hirsch and colleagues, a collaboration between doctors and researchers saved the life of a child with a skin disorder called junctional epidermolysis bullosa (JEB). JEB is a genetic disease caused by mutations in … Read moreVirally Modified Cells Regenerate Normal Skin

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Bionic Organs with Silicon Nanopore Membranes

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One of the challenges to building artificial organs is finding or creating suitable materials for use in such devices. If the device contains living cells, then those cells need to receive nutrients from, exchange gases with, and send cellular waste products into blood. In addition, the cells should also respond appropriately to circulating regulatory signals, … Read moreBionic Organs with Silicon Nanopore Membranes

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Leveraging Cellular Mechanical Signaling to Improve Drug Specificity

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Toxicity to healthy cells limits the usefulness of conventional chemotherapeutic agents. These drugs kill rapidly dividing cells of all types, not just those in a tumor. In addition to dividing rapidly, some cancer cells establish metastases that have a different stiffness than the surrounding tissue. This mechanical property of a cellular microenvironment is referred to … Read moreLeveraging Cellular Mechanical Signaling to Improve Drug Specificity

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Fighting Cancer with the Immune System: Lessons from CAR T Cell Therapy

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The Promise of CAR T Cell Therapy Many strategies that train the immune system to recognize and attack cancer are in development or undergoing clinical trials (1). However, these strategies haveĀ the potential to cause life-threatening consequences, as evidenced by the latest report of the death of another patient receiving CAR T cell therapy (2). CAR … Read moreFighting Cancer with the Immune System: Lessons from CAR T Cell Therapy

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