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What’s the Stem Cells Buzz this Week? - UCB for Ischemic Stroke, Wound Healing with UCB, Scar Reduction by OSKM, and Using Fat to Fight Disease!



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!

Allogeneic Cord Blood in Ischemic Stroke

Given the ever-rising prevalence of ischemic stroke and the lack of viable treatment options, many studies have begun to investigate cell-based therapies to improve functional outcomes in patients. A recent STEM CELLS Translational Medicine article from the lab of Ellen R. Bennett (Duke University, Durham, NC, USA) reports on their phase 1 open‐label trial to assess the safety and feasibility of a single IV infusion of non‐human leukocyte antigen-matched, ABO-matched, unrelated allogeneic umbilical cord blood (UCB) into adult stroke patients. Laskowitz et al. report the safety of this approach and note improvements in neurological and functional evaluations in every patient, thereby supporting the conduct of a randomized, placebo‐controlled phase 2 study.

Treatment of Wounds with Umbilical Cord Blood

With a rise in the number of patients suffering from type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) comes an increase in the incidence of related chronic wounds and amputations. However, a new study from the lab of Ian M. Rogers (Lunenfeld‐Tanenbaum Research Institute, Sinai Health System, Canada) now demonstrates that in vitro cultured umbilical cord blood (UCB) CD34+ stem cells from frozen units accelerate wound healing and result in the regeneration of full-thickness skin in a mouse diabetes model. Whiteley et al. note that this data supports the retention of therapeutic properties in UCB cells following the freezing of umbilical cord units. Discover more over at STEM CELLS Translational Medicine now.

Scar Reduction by Reprogramming Factors

Recent studies have suggested that partial reprogramming via the transient expression of the OCT4, SOX2, KLF4, and C‐MYC (OSKM) transcription factors may represent an exciting means to regenerate damaged tissues in vivo. Now, new research from the lab of Hans R. Schöler (Max Planck Institute for Molecular Biomedicine, Münster, Germany) establishes that OSKM induction in cutaneous wounds of transgenic mice causes diminished fibroblast transdifferentiation to myofibroblasts and wound contraction, the downregulation of profibrotic marker genes, and reduced scar tissue formation. For a deeper dive into the data, see STEM CELLS now.

Employing Fat to Fight Disease

Researchers from the lab of Bruce A. Bunnell (Tulane University School of Medicine, New Orleans, USA) bring us a review of the safety and efficacy of adipose stem cells (ASCs) and the stromal vascular fraction (SVF) of adipose tissue in treating common diseases and the next steps in research that must occur prior to clinical use. Overall, Bateman et al. report that SVF and ASC represent promising therapies for a variety of human diseases, particularly for patients with severe cases refractory to current medical treatments, although randomized controlled trials must be performed to elaborate potential safety and efficacy before clinical use. For all the details, make your way over to STEM CELLS right now!

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!