A review focuses on the potential of engineered MSC therapies that can be topically applied to the ocular surface to treat inflammatory disorders
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Summaries of the most recent articles published in STEM CELLS and STEM CELLS Translational Medicine.
Neonatal cardiac tissue stem‐like cells express metabolism-related genes that increase functional properties
A Review article discusses the impact of GPCRs and their signaling partners in skin keratinocyte biology, particularly in the regulation of the epidermal stem cell compartment
A clinical trial evaluates autologous BMMNC transplantation combined with educational intervention for children with autism spectrum disorder
A recent review article summarizes the molecular and genetic discoveries regarding the biogenesis of the RNA component of human telomerase
Peskova et al. provide evidence that the miR‐183/96/182 cluster plays a significant role in the morphogenesis of the neural retina
Researchers report a crucial role for mTOR in cell‐cycle progression and proliferation in the commitment/proliferation phase of erythropoiesis
Analysis of humanized mouse models provided evidence that human immune cell infiltration in skeletal muscle should not be used alone to predict immunogenicity
A new STEM CELLS Translational Medicine article from the lab of Mohsin Khan (Lewis Katz School of Medicine, Temple University, Philadelphia, PA, USA) now reports that cardiac tissue stem‐like cells (CTSCs) derived from neonatal and aged mouse hearts exhibit unique gene expression patterns. Kurian et al. established that neonatal CTSCs express metabolism-related genes that increase the functional properties of the cells; however, adverse changes in the expression of said genes associates with the decreased function that accompanies the aging process. Additionally, this fascinating new study reports a novel role for mitochondrial protein uncoupling protein 2 (UCP2) in mediating beneficial effects on neonatal CTSCs. Importantly, the loss of UCP2 with age or in neonatal CTSCs blocks beneficial effects of metabolism on cellular function.
Skin stem cells express a variety of G‐protein coupled receptors (GPCRs), which play central roles in physiological functions and pathological conditions such as cancer and inflammatory diseases. Understanding GPCR signaling may provide important insight into the maintenance of stem cell identity and the approaches stem cells utilize to respond and adapt to microenvironmental changes. Furthermore, since GPCRs are the direct or indirect target of more than one-third of therapeutic drugs, they constitute a gateway for the pharmacological modulation of stem cell activity. Now, in a new STEM CELLS review article, researchers led by Ramiro Iglesias‐Bartolome (National Cancer Institute, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland, USA) discuss the impact of GPCRs and their signaling partners in skin keratinocyte biology, particularly in the regulation of the epidermal stem cell compartment.
A recent STEM CELLS Translational Medicine article from researchers led by Liem Nguyen Thanh (Vinmec Research Institute of Stem Cell and Gene Technology, Hanoi, Vietnam) describes the results of a recent clinical trial that aimed to evaluate the safety and efficacy of autologous bone marrow mononuclear cell (BMMNC) transplantation combined with educational intervention for children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). The findings suggest that cell therapy and educational intervention may improve clinical manifestations, such as social communication, language, and daily skills, in children with ASD; however, additional studies with control groups should be performed in the future to obtain a more comprehensive and accurate conclusion.
A recent STEM CELLS review article from Neha Nagpal and Suneet Agarwal (Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts, USA) summarizes the molecular and genetic discoveries regarding the biogenesis of the RNA component of human telomerase (TERC) and telomere biology disorders that have led to a better understanding and potential treatments for stem cell diseases.
In a new STEM CELLS article, researchers led by Tomas Barta (Masaryk University, Brno, Czech Republic) report that the miR‐183/96/182 cluster regulates PAX6 expression and its inhibition leads to increased neural retina expansion at early stages of differentiation of human retinal organoids derived from human pluripotent stem cells. Peskova et al. provide evidence that the miR‐183/96/182 cluster plays a significant role in the morphogenesis of the neural retina.
In a new STEM CELLS article, researchers led by Xin Zhang (First Affiliated Hospital of Shantou University Medical College, China) evaluated the roles of mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) inhibition on human umbilical cord blood‐derived CD34-positive cell erythropoiesis in vitro. Liu et al. now report a crucial role for mTOR in cell‐cycle progression and proliferation in the commitment/proliferation phase of erythropoiesis. Significantly, mTOR inhibition via rapamycin treatment improved erythroid cell maturation by promoting enucleation and mitochondrial clearance through enhanced autophagy. Overall, these findings may help to optimize erythroid differentiation but also provide evidence for the potential clinical application of rapamycin in the improvement of erythropoiesis.
The immunogenicity of human induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC)‐derived cells will strongly influence their use in regenerative medicine; however, this critical feature remains relatively unstudied due to the necessity of humanized mice reconstituted with an immune system autologous to iPSC‐derived cells. Reporting in a recent STEM CELLS Translational Medicine study, researchers led by Christian Beauséjour (Centre de Recherche du CHU Ste‐Justine/Université de Montréal, Montréal, Québec, Canada) employed two distinct humanized mouse models to provide evidence that human immune cell infiltration in skeletal muscle should not be used as the sole marker to predict immunogenicity. Indeed, Benabdallah et al. establish that human iPSC‐derived myogenic progenitors, like primary human myoblasts, are tolerated despite being infiltrated by autologous T cell. Overall, this study provides essential preclinical data supporting the usage of human iPSC‐derived myogenic progenitor cells.
A new Perspective article from researchers led by Joshua Hunsberger (Wake Forest University School of Medicine ‐ Wake Forest Institute for Regenerative Medicine, Winston‐Salem, NC, USA) and published in STEM CELLS Translational Medicine critically evaluates some of the promising regenerative medicine‐based therapies for treating COVID‐19 and presents some of the collective technologies and resources that the scientific community currently has available to confront this pandemic.
Additionally, the Regenerative Medicine Manufacturing Society (RMMS) and STEM CELLS Translational Medicine have collaborated to create a platform on the Stem Cells Portal (https://stemcellsportal.com/regenerative-medicine-covid-19-resources) to share regenerative medicine resources in order to address the COVID‐19 pandemic in three areas: models, cell therapies, and technologies. This information will be made publicly available and developed further by RMMS in future webinars and perspective articles.
The inability to non-invasively identify and track transplanted cells in vivo often limits the translation of cell therapies for central nervous system disorders. In a new STEM CELLS Translational Medicine article, researchers led by Eva L. Feldman (University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA) describe a novel magnetotactic bacteria-based magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) contrast agent that enables visualization and tracking of cell grafts in the non-human primate and murine brain. McGinley et al. report that these agents may find use in determining graft survival or rejection with further optimization. Overall, this study suggests that magneto‐endosymbionts represent an effective tool for the in vivo monitoring of cell‐based therapies with potential relevance to neurological applications.
Researchers led by Mariano Garcia‐Arranz (Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, Madrid, Spain) aimed to evaluate the safety and feasibility of adipose‐derived mesenchymal stem cells to endoscopically treat urinary incontinence after radical prostatectomy in men or female stress urinary through designed two prospective, non-randomized phase I/IIa clinical trials. Their results, reported recently in STEM CELLS Translational Medicine, establish the intraurethral application of stem cells derived from adipose tissue as a safe and feasible means to treat urinary incontinence after radical prostatectomy or in female stress urinary incontinence. The authors now hope to confirm safety and to analyze efficacy in their subsequent research.