Year 1 & 2

CIRM support for the core activities and initiatives over the last two years has resulted in the establishment of a robust shared laboratory facility that has allowed us to meet and exceed all of the original goals outlined in our initial proposal including renovation of the laboratory space that accommodates research and educational activities on pluripotent stem cells, reprogramming, cancer stem cells and directed differentiation. The space has been equipped for standard and advanced stem cell applications. In addition, we have established a human tissue bank that incorporates tissues donated for derivation of novel pluripotent stem cell lines and studies of reprogramming and differentiation. Research that has benefit from the shared laboratory space and stem cell courses includes studies of cell senescence and telomerase function in stem cells, human and mouse embryology, derivation of disease-specific human embryonic stem cell lines, urinary incontinence, Marfan syndrome, cancer, cardiovascular health, mitochondrial reprogramming, somatic cell nuclear transfer, diabetes, cystinosis, Parkinson’s disease, autism, and basic studies of growth factor function, somatic and germ line development, establishment of pluripotency and mechanisms underlying reprogramming. In addition to assisting research efforts, our program serves as one of the CIRM-supported centers of education to host students from the CIRM Bridges program enrolled in the California State University system. The Stem Cell Courses have been highly-rated by all participants and have sparked additional course offerings for graduate, medical and postdoctoral students, as well as undergraduates and visiting scholars. Workshops and seminars have been added to cover the latest technologies and provide a venue for interaction of scientists from diverse backgrounds. Overall, the Shared Laboratory and Stem Cell Courses funding has greatly stimulated research on pluripotent stem cells and has had a major effect on the community in direct or indirect support of publications and support of grant applications for additional funding.