Weeding out the tumor-forming cells from potential stem cell therapies

CIRM grantees at Stanford University have removed some of the risk of therapies based on human embryonic stem cells or reprogrammed adult cells, known as iPS cells.

Aggressive breast cancer treated with bone marrow stem cells

Last week brought a paper by Stanford researchers that has been a long, long time coming. It shows that 12-14 years after the experimental treatment, women with metastatic breast cancer benefited from high dose chemotherapy followed by transplantation of their own blood-forming stem cells. The paper was published online July 15 in Biology of Blood and Marrow Transplantation.

More on the Berlin patient, stem cells, and a cure for HIV

The response to the story about the Berlin patient who was reported cured of  HIV has been incredible, but in this case it's also a little troubling. What I see in comments on news stories or in tweets is that we have an uphill battle in terms of educating people about stem cells.

Knocking out leukemia stem cells

A good report about bone marrow transplantation in progress comes from the National Hockey League, of all places. Mandi Schwartz, a Yale women's hockey player, was diagnosed with acute myeloid leukemia and is being treated at the Seattle Cancer Care Alliance.

In the name of full disclosure, that's the center that cured my mother's lymphoma, so let's just say I'm a fan.

Basic research and the search for cures

Two interesting reports today discuss the relationship between basic research and the kind of translational research that is the most visible sign of progress toward cures.

In his blog, the director of the bay area biotech collaborative QB3 Regis Kelly writes about public speakers at the Translational Medicine Alliance speaking out against basic research. He says:

Stem cell videos make the grade

One amazing aspect of living in the era of social media is the incredible way information spreads. A butterfly batting its little orange wings in a monarch grove in Santa Cruz could influence a tweet of a blogger heard 'round the world.

Hope for CIRM leukemia disease team

The clock is ticking on the 14 CIRM Disease Team projects issued last October, which are working under a four-year deadline to hit the clinic. The $20 million acute myeloid leukemia project headed up by Irv Weissman of Stanford University just reported some promising progress.

The competition that isn't: Adult vs. embryonic stem cells

The past few days have sent the blogosphere -- especially the anti-embryonic stem cell blogosphere -- abuzz over a story by the Associated Press with the headline "Adult Stem Cell Research Far Ahead of Embryonic."

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