Human Stem Cell Use: Embryonic Stem Cell

Therapeutic potential of Retinal Pigment Epithelial cell lines derived from hES cells for retinal degeneration.

Retinal degeneration represents a group of blinding diseases that are increasingly impacting the health and well being of Californians. It is estimated that by 2020, over 450,000 Californians will suffer from vision loss or blindness due to the age-related macular degeneration (AMD), the most common cause of retinal degeneration diseases in the elderly. Furthermore, retinitis […]

Optimization of guidance response in human embryonic stem cell derived midbrain dopaminergic neurons in development and disease

A promising approach to alleviating the symptoms of Parkinson’s disease is to transplant healthy dopaminergic neurons into the brains of these patients. Due to the large number of transplant neurons required for each patient and the difficulty in obtaining these neurons from human tissue, the most viable transplantation strategy will utilize not fetal dopaminergic neurons […]

The APOBEC3 Gene Family as Guardians of Genome Stability in Human Embryonic Stem Cells

The successful use of human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) as novel regenerative therapies for a spectrum of currently incurable diseases critically depends upon the safety of such cell transfers. hESCs contain roughly 3 million “jumping genes” or mobile genetic retroelements that comprise up to 45% of their genetic material. While many of these retroelements have […]

Genetic Enhancement of the Immune Response to Melanoma via hESC-derived T cells

The overall goal of the proposed studies is to utilize human gene therapy approach using human embryonic stem cells to direct our body’s defenses to specifically attack melanoma tumor cells. Current technologies try to accomplish this by genetically manipulating certain circulating T lymphocytes, such that they will target tumor cells. T lymphocytes are the major […]

Generation of forebrain neurons from human embryonic stem cells

The goal of this proposal is to generate forebrain neurons from human embryonic stem cells. Our general strategy is to sequentially expose ES cells to signals that lead to differentiation along a neuronal lineage, and to select for cells that display characteristics of forebrain neurons. These cells would then be used in transplantation experiments to […]

A method to maintain and propagate pluripotent human ES cells

Human embryonic stem (hES) cells are pluripotent such that they can differentiate into all three germ layers, thus potentially all different types of tissues of the body. Pluripotency is characteristic of only embryonic cells, but it can also be achieved by reprogramming differentiated cells by transferring nuclear contents into unfertilized, enucleated oocytes or by fusing […]

Combinatorial Platform for Optimizing Microenvironments to Control hESC Fate

The aim of California Stem Cells Initiative is to develop new therapeutical approaches by utilizing human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) to renew themselves and to differentiate into a variety of cell types, thus enabling the engineering of specific tissues to treat diseases that cannot be currently cured. To realize the potential of hESCs in regenerative […]

Genetic modification of the human genome to resist HIV-1 infection and/or disease progression

The proposed studies describe the genetic approaches utilizing human embryonic stem cells to suppress and/or eliminate the expression of the human protein CCR5. CCR5 is found on the surface of white blood cells. HIV-1 attaches to CCR5 and uses CCR5 to enter into its target cells. Our approach is to utilize established as well as […]

Role of Mitochondria in Self-Renewal Versus Differentiation of Human Embryonic Stem Cells

Human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) hold great potential for treating multiple human dread diseases, including but not limited to cancer, diabetes, obesity, Alzheimer disease, and certain types of heart failure. However, a growing appreciation exists for the notion that not all hESCs have identical capabilities in correcting or ameliorating disease and not all hESCs will […]

Development of Neuro-Coupled Human Embryonic Stem Cell-Derived Cardiac Pacemaker Cells.

Optimal cardiac function depends on the properly coordinated cardiac conduction system (CCS). The CCS is a group of specialized cells responsible for generating cardiac rhythm and conducting these signals efficiently to working myocardium. This specialized CCS includes the sinoatrial node, atrioventricular node and His-Purkinje system. These specialized pacemaking /conducting cells have different properties from the […]