For this episode’s interview, we bring on Dr. Shawn Hingtgen, Assistant Professor at the Department of Molecular Pharmaceutics at UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy, and Dr. Matthew G. Ewend, Chair of the Department of Neurosurgery at UNC School of Medicine. Dr. Hingtgen’s research focuses on utilizing molecular imaging to characterize and validate novel stem cell-based targeted therapeutics for treatment of highly aggressive brain cancers. Most recently, Hingtgen and Ewend published a paper in Science Translational Medicine describing a novel method using neural stem cells to home to and infiltrate brain tumors in mouse models.

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Resources and Links

New Administration Will Deeply Cut Science Budgets – The harshest budget cuts appear to be directed at biomedical research, which will see a dramatic 20 percent drop in funding for the National Institutes of Health

Making a Mistake Can Make Your Brain Pause – When facing a fast and furious stream of decisions, even the momentary distraction of noting an error can decrease accuracy on the next choice.

Genetically Engineered Corn to Ward Off Fungal Growth – Genetically altered corn infected with Aspergillus fungus may be able to prevent the fungus from releasing carcinogenic toxins or aflatoxins.

Insight into Neandertals’ Diet and Disease from Preserved Dental Plaque – Dental plaque preserved in fossilized teeth confirms that Neandertals were flexible eaters and may have self-medicated with an ancient equivalent of aspirin.

3 Women Blinded by Unproven Stem Cell Treatments – Researchers document the cases of three elderly women who were blinded after getting stem cells derived from fat tissue at a for-profit clinic in Florida.

A New Report Aims to Decipher How the Body Controls Stem Cells – Researchers from the Luxembourg Centre for Systems Biomedicine of the University of Luxembourg and an international team have now identified an ingenious mechanism by which the body orchestrates the regeneration of red and white blood cells from progenitor cells.

Turning Old Gut Stem Cells Young – It may be possible to partially reverse aging in gut stem cells, at least in a petri dish according to a paper in Cell Reports March 14.

A New Antibody Therapy That Targets Cancer Stem Cells – Scientists have described a novel antibody therapy with a two-in-one antibody, called CT16, that may be able to both shrink tumors and target cancer stem cells.

Photo Reference: Courtesy of Dr. Shawn Hingtgen