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What’s the Stem Cells Buzz this Week? - miRNA and Mammary Stem Cells, Enhanced MSC Immunosuppression, Endothelial MSC Plasticity, and hPSC Modelling of Beta-Cell Pathology!

The Stem Cells Portal brings you a roundup of some of the new and exciting stories in the ever-changing world of stem cells, regenerative medicine, and beyond!

Role of miR-205 in Mammary Stem Cells

A new study from the lab of Jeffrey M. Rosen (Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, Texas, USA) recently highlighted an essential role for microRNA-mediated regulation of the stem cell self‐renewal and differentiation required for mammary gland development. Lu et al. discovered that deletion of miR-205 abrogated mammary stem cell self-renewal during mammary reconstitution and that negative regulators of YAP and WNT signaling represented novel miR-205 targets. For all the details, see STEM CELLS now!

Serum-Free Mesenchymal Stem Cells Enhance Immunosuppressive Effects

A fascinating recent report out of the Ayumu Nakashima and Takao Masaki (Hiroshima University, Hiroshima, Japan) lab has recently demonstrated that the serum present in culture medium can inhibit the immunosuppressive and antifibrotic abilities of in vitro expanded mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) and, therefore, hinder their clinical application. Yoshida et al. report in STEM CELLS Translational Medicine how serum-free growth conditions enhanced the ability of MSCs to induce an immunosuppressive M2 in macrophages and promoted the amelioration of renal fibrosis when compared MSCs cultured in serum‐containing conditions. Overall, this study promotes the use of serum‐free culture medium for the culture of clinically applied MSCs.

Endothelial Plasticity of Adipose-derived Mesenchymal Stem Cells

While many hope that adipose‐derived mesenchymal stem cells (ASCs) may represent endothelial cell substitutes for the vascularization of tissue‐engineered constructs, new research from the lab of J. Paul Santerre (University of Toronto, Ontario, Canada) may have now dashed this line of research. Antonyshyn et al. now report that ASCs present with a “strikingly limited” endothelial differentiation potential even though differentiating ASCs upregulated the expression of endothelial genes and proteins. Will this study end the endothelial promise of ASCs? Head over to STEM CELLS Translational Medicine to discover more!

Human Pluripotent Stem Cell Modelling of Pancreatic Beta-Cell Pathology

Finally, a new review article from the lab of Timo Otonkoski (University of Helsinki, Finland) aims to summarize current progress in modeling diabetes with human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs). Balboa et al. discuss the current challenges and opportunities of these approaches to dissect pancreatic beta‐cell pathology and devise new pharmacological and cell replacement therapies. For a tremendous sounding read, STEM CELLS has you covered!

That’s a wrap for now! Please feel free to leave a comment and discuss the papers covered here on the Stem Cells Buzz. Happy reading!