Over the past few weeks some really exciting papers came out describing the reprogramming of one cell into another, a process called Direct Reprogramming. On this episode we talk with Dr. Justin Ichida from USC who uses the latest reprogramming techniques in his lab to study neural disease. We review the literature from the past two weeks including increased brain activity in those that recall their dreams, incidence of Autism on the rise, converting skin cells into liver or pancreatic cells, and making meat from celebrities. We close with a rant on stir bars. Enjoy!
Justin Ichida completed his Ph.D. at Harvard Medical School in the laboratory of Dr. Jack Szostak. From 2007-2012, he was a postdoctoral fellow in the laboratory of Dr. Kevin Eggan in the Department of Stem Cell and Regenerative Biology at Harvard University. Dr. Ichida was a New York Stem Cell Foundation Druckenmiller Fellow and a recipient of the NIH K99/R00 Pathway to Independence award from the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke. Since 2013, he has been an Assistant Professor of Stem Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine at the University of Southern California. His current research is focused on using patient-specific disease models to define the mechanisms that lead to neuronal loss in ALS and frontotemporal dementia.