Therapeutic/Technology: Exploring stem cell mechanisms


A novel druggable mechanism to safeguard stem cell genome

Safeguarding the genome is essential for cells’ proper functions, and more importantly for safe and efficacious applications involving pluripotent stem cells and adult stem cells. However, how pluripotent or somatic stem cells maintain genome integrity during self-renewal, differentiation, and reprogramming is still largely unknown. We recently identified a small molecule drug that exhibits unprecedented abilities […]

Molecular basis of plasma membrane characteristics reflecting stem cell fate potential

Stem cells generate mature, functional cells after proteins on the cell surface interact with cues from the environment encountered during development or after transplantation. Thus, these cell surface proteins are critical for directing transplanted stem cells to form appropriate cells to treat injury or disease. A key modification regulating cell surface proteins is glycosylation, which […]

Medical School Loan Repayment Program

Because the regenerative capacity of adult heart is limited, any substantial cell loss as a result of a heart attack is mostly irreversible and may lead to progressive heart failure. Human pluripotent stem cells can be differentiated to heart cells, but their properties when transplanted into an injured heart remain unresolved. We propose to perform […]

Medical School Loan Repayment Program

Many fetuses with congenital blood stem cell disorders such as sickle cell disease or thalassemia are prenatally diagnosed early enough in pregnancy to be treated with stem cell transplantation. The main benefit to treating these diseases before birth is that the immature fetal immune system may accept transplanted cells without needing to use immunosuppressant drugs […]

Medical School Loan Repayment Program

Despite therapeutic advances, cardiovascular disease remains a leading cause of mortality and morbidity in California. Regenerative therapies that restore normal function after a heart attack would have an enormous societal and financial impact. Although very promising, regenerative cardiac cell therapy faces a number of challenges and technological hurdles. Human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSC) allow […]

Enhancing hair cell regeneration in mouse and human inner ear

Hearing loss (HL) is a permanent sensory disorder affecting over 278 million people worldwide. In the US and California, 20% of individuals suffer from this sensory deficit. Those affected range from newborns (2 per 1000), to children aged 3-17 (5 per 1000), to adults including the elderly (~33% in aged 65-74 and ~50% >85 years […]

Human endothelial reprogramming for hematopoietic stem cell therapy.

The current roadblocks to hematopoietic stem cell (HSC) therapies include the rarity of matched donors for bone marrow transplant, engraftment failures, common shortages of donated blood, and the inability to expand HSCs ex vivo in large numbers. These major obstacles would cease to exist if an extensive, bankable, inexhaustible, and patient-matched supply of blood were […]

Human Induced Pluripotent Stem Cell-Derived Cardiovascular Progenitor Cells for Cardiac Cell Therapy.

Despite therapeutic advances, cardiovascular disease remains a leading cause of mortality and morbidity in California. Regenerative therapies that restore normal function after a heart attack would have an enormous societal and financial impact. Although very promising, regenerative cardiac cell therapy faces a number of challenges and technological hurdles. Human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSC) allow […]

Regulation of Epidermal Self-Renewal and Differentiation by Histone and DNA Demethylases.

Tissue specific stem and progenitor cells exist to replenish the tissue it resides during normal homeostasis or during regeneration from a wound. Disease and aging leads to a depletion of these stem and progenitor cells, which can impede the ability of the body to regenerate itself. Thus, an understanding of the mechanisms of how tissue […]

Epigenetic regulation of human cardiac differentiation

Each cell type in our body has its own identity. This identity allows a heart cell to contract repetitively, and a brain cell to conduct nerve impulses. Each cell type gains its identity by turning on or off thousands of genes that together give the cell its identity. Understanding how these sets of genes are […]