Welcome SCP fans to Episode 53. Be sure to visit stemcellpodcast.com for current and past episodes and to sign up for our newsletter. We begin as always with our Science Roundup sponsored by Thermo Fisher. In this episode, we discuss topics ranging from a new human species discovered, a study showing how many trees exist, the new winner of the new Ogawa and Yamanaka award, the new “unicorn” company Stemcentrx and what they’re up to, a new way to track the way stem cells divide, liver stem cells, robots making IPS cells, resin from a tree can be a new epilepsy treatment, sleep deprivation is the main risk factor for a cold, and melatonin contributes to the seasonality of multiple sclerosis. For the interview portion of the show, sponsored by STEMCELL Technologies, we bring on Dr. Scott Noggle, VP of Stem Cell Research at The New York Stem Cell Foundation to discuss their automated system for making IPS cells. We then finish off the show with a rant on mistaking zeroes (0) for the letter O. Enjoy!
Below are all of the papers mentioned on the show. We are working on a way to categorize all of the research papers (most likely through a forum) we mention and possibly even provide audio summaries. Enter in your name and e-mail address below, and we will notify you of when this feature is available.
Resources, Links and Research Papers Mentioned In This Session Include:
Reversing Muscle Atrophy With Food: Eating Apples, Green Tomatoes May Increase Muscle Strength – In this article, researchers from the University of Iowa have discovered that the ursolic acid in apple peels and tomatidine compounds in the skin of green tomatoes prevented muscle atrophy — the loss of muscle mass due to the natural aging process — by turning off the problematic protein ATF4.
Homo naledi, A New Species Of The Genus Homo From The Dinaledi Chamber, South Africa – According to this article, Berger et al. report the recent discovery of an extinct species from the genus Homo naledi that was unearthed from deep underground in what has been named the Dinaledi Chamber, in the Rising Star cave system in South Africa.
Neurodegeneration: Amyloid-Β Pathology Induced In Humans – This article reveals that people who died of the neurodegenerative condition Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease after treatment with cadaver-derived human growth hormone also developed some of the pathological traits of Alzheimer’s disease.
Nearsightedness Develops When Kids With Specific Gene Read A Lot – This article suggests that when children with a certain gene spend much of their time doing activities that involve close work such as reading, they are more likely to develop nearsightedness.
Brazilian Wasp Venom Kills Cancer Cells By Opening Them Up – In this article, a study reveals exactly how the social wasp Polybia paulista venom’s toxin — called MP1 (Polybia-MP1) — selectively kills cancer cells without harming normal cells.
Neuroscientists Locate ‘Alcoholism Neurons’ In The Brain – According to this article, alcohol consumption alters the structure and function of neurons in an area of the brain called the dorsomedial striatum.
New Strategy To Lower Blood Sugar May Help In Diabetes Treatment – In this article, researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis suggest a different strategy to lower blood sugar: by slowing the production of glucose in the liver.
Tree Resin Research Offers New Epilepsy Treatment Potential – According to this article, researchers in Sweden have published innovative new research that details how certain types of tree resin might contain substances with the potential to relieve or cure epilepsy.
A New Factor In Depression? Brain Protein Discovery Could Lead To Better Treatments – This article points out that the discovery, about a protein called fibroblast growth factor 9 or FGF9 goes against previous findings that depressed brains often have less of key components than non-depressed brains.
Sleep Deprivation Quadruples Your Risk Of Catching A Cold – This article describes how sleep deprivation is greatly detrimental to your health, making you four times more likely to catch a cold.
Researchers Explore Memory Problems Related to Parkinson’s – This article reports that many people with Parkinson’s disease have memory problems.
The Earth Has 3 Trillion Trees, Study Finds – According to this article, a study led by Yale University estimates the Earth is home to 3 trillion trees – more than what was previously believed.
Video 1: Movie Shows The Automation Of Somatic Cell Isolation And Expansion – This movie shows how the automation of somatic cell isolation and expansion is done in the laboratory.
Stem Cell Procedures Need More Oversight – This article suggests that federal officials need to do more to prevent for-profit stem cell clinics from exploiting and potentially injuring patients, according to an article published in a leading medical journal.
Masayo Takahashi is awarded inaugural Ogawa-Yamanaka Stem Cell Prize – According to this article, Center for Developmental Biology (CDB) researcher Masayo Takahashi has been awarded the first Ogawa-Yamanaka Stem Cell Prize for her “trailblazing work leading the first clinical trial to use induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells in humans.”
Peter Thiel Backs Biotech “Unicorn” Fighting Cancer Stem Cells – This article reports that Stemcentrx, a startup company thinks stem cells are at the root of common cancers.
Human Neuropsychiatric Disease Modeling using Conditional Deletion Reveals Synaptic Transmission Defects Caused by Heterozygous Mutations in NRXN1 – This article describes how the researchers generated human ESCs with different heterozygous conditional NRXN1 mutations and analyzed two different types of isogenic control and NRXN1 mutant neurons derived from these ESCs.
Melatonin Contributes to the Seasonality of Multiple Sclerosis Relapses – In this article, researchers report that melatonin levels, whose production is modulated by seasonal variations in night length, negatively correlate with multiple sclerosis activity in humans.
Computational Image Analysis Reveals Intrinsic Multigenerational Differences between Anterior and Posterior Cerebral Cortex Neural Progenitor Cells – In this article, researchers combine improved automated algorithms with minimized human validation to produce fully corrected segmentation, tracking, and lineaging results with dramatic reduction in effort.
Photo Reference: Courtesy of Dr. Scott Noggle