For this episode’s interview, we bring on Dr. Justin Lathia, Assistant Professor in the Department of Cellular and Molecular Medicine at the Lerner Research Institute, Cleveland Clinic. Dr. Lathia’s research focus is on how stem cell programs drive tumor progression and therapeutic resistance. Most recently his group published a paper in Cell Stem Cell, describing a novel method on how stem cells in brain tumors evade immune signals around them.

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Resources and Links

Certain Birth Defects Are on the Rise Since Zika Arrived in the U.S. – Certain birth defects were 20 times more prevalent in babies born to Zika virus–infected mothers in the U.S. in 2016 than they were before the virus cropped up in the United States, a CDC study suggests.

Bacteria Genes Offer New Strategy for Sterilizing Mosquitoes – A pair of bacterial genes called cifA and cifB, connected to the sterility mechanism of Wolbachia may enable genetic engineering strategies for curbing populations of virus-transmitting mosquitoes.

New Imaging Technique Catches DNA ‘Flickering’ On – This article describes a new imaging technique that takes advantage of DNA’s natural ability to “blink” in response to stimulating light.

Gastric Bypass Controls Diabetes Long Term Better Than Other Methods – People who undergo gastric bypass surgery are more likely to experience a remission of their diabetes than patients who receive a gastric sleeve or intensive management of diet and exercise, according to a new study.

Scientists Use Two Types Of Stem Cells To Grow Artificial Mouse “Embryo” – Scientists combine mouse embryonic stem cells and extra-embryonic trophoblast stem cells in a 3D-scaffold to generate structures whose morphogenesis is remarkably similar to natural embryos.

Stem Cell Science in Space Happening with SpaceX Rocket – SpaceX rocket carrying samples of donated adult stem cells from a research laboratory at Mayo Clinic’s Florida campus launched from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Fla., on Feb. 19.

Australian Researchers Have Discovered Stem Cells in the Breast That May Be Linked to a High-Risk Form of Breast Cancer – Located in a region near the nipple, the newly-found stem cells have many molecular similarities to a subtype of ‘triple negative’ breast cancers known as claudin-low cancers.

Obesity Can Reprogram Muscle Stem Cells – According to this article, by comparing the DNA methylation in immature and mature muscle cells from healthy individuals, Cajsa Davegårdh discovered that the actual degree of methylation had a major impact on the maturation process.

Photo Reference: Courtesy of Dr. Justin Lathia