Understanding Stem Cell Biology

Researchers at UC, San Francisco identified a group of genes that are active in embryonic stem cells but not in more differentiated cells. They also developed a technique to find DNA regions that could be important for activating these genes, and identified a factor that directs the production of proteins from genes that contain these regulatory DNA regions. These studies will greatly inform research efforts that rely on maintaining a stem cell's ability to proliferate and to generate the many different cell types in a human body.

Researchers at UC, San Diego found the function of a key protein involved in the cell cycle, the process by which a cell duplicates all its genes and divides. The protein is critical to the assembly of the membrane around the cell's nucleus. A fundamental understanding of the cell cycle is integral to advancing all cell-based therapies.

Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences: April 17, 2007