Understanding working of parkin gene and Parkinson’s disease

Parkinson’s disease: Study of live human neurons reveals the disease’s genetic origins — UB researchers identify how the parkin gene works and how mutations cause Parkinson’s disease – Parkinson’s disease researchers at the University at Buffalo have discovered how mutations in the parkin gene cause the disease, which afflicts at least 500,000 Americans and for which there is no cure. The results are published in the current issue of Nature Communications.

Brain cell channel defect may cause autism like syndrome

Scientists identify defect in brain cell channel that may cause autism-like syndrome – What goes wrong in the brain when an individual suffers from autism. Autism is a spectrum of developmental disorders of impaired social and verbal interaction. Currently, no medication exists to treat its underlying causes, according to the U.S. National Library of Medicine.

Understanding beginnings of embryonic stem cells helps predict the future

Understanding the beginnings of embryonic stem cells helps predict the future – Ordinarily, embryonic stem cells exist only a day or two as they begin the formation of the embryo itself. Then they are gone. In the laboratory dish, however, they act more like perpetual stem cells ? renewing themselves and exhibiting the ability to form cells of almost any type, a status called totipotency.

Neural stem cell transplant may cure diabetes

Neural stem cell transplant may tackle diabetes — Using patients’ own stem cells can overcome shortage of insulin-producing cells without the need for gene transfer – Researchers in Japan have discovered how a patient’s neural stem cells could be used as an alternative source of the beta cells needed for a regenerative treatment for diabetes.

$3.5 million Komen award to study rare and aggressive type of breast cancer

TGen breast cancer research benefits from $3.5 million Komen award — Grant enables multi-institute team to study rare and aggressive type of breast cancer – The Translational Genomics Research Institute (TGen) is part of a team of medical investigators receiving a $3.5 million grant from Susan G. Komen for the Cure to study triple-negative breast cancer, a highly aggressive form of this cancer that disproportionately affects African-Americans.

2 types of stem cells are similar

Study reveals critical similarity between two types of do-it-all stem cells – Researchers saw substantial similarity between the two stem-cell types – pluripotent stem cells and embryonic stem cells, reported in a new study.

Adcetris approved to treat two types of lymphoma

FDA approves Adcetris to treat two types of lymphoma – The U.S. Food and Drug Administration recently approved Adcetris (brentuximab vedotin) to treat Hodgkin lymphoma (HL) and a rare lymphoma known as systemic anaplastic large cell lymphoma (ALCL).

US can continue to fund embryonic stem cell research

ASCB applauds the decision of Judge Royce Lamberth of the US District Court for the District of Columbia to dismiss a lawsuit challenging the US National Institutes of Health guidelines on funding human embryonic stem cell research – The American Society for Cell Biology (ASCB) applauds the decision of Judge Royce Lamberth of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia (DC) to dismiss a lawsuit challenging the U.S. National Institutes of Health guidelines on funding human embryonic stem cell research (hESC).

SOX2 gene acts as a stem cell gatekeeper, decides neural stem cell fate

What decides neural stem cell fate? — A gene called SOX2 acts as a stem cell gatekeeper — only cells expressing it have the potential to become neurons – Early in embryonic development, the neural crest ? a transient group of stem cells ? gives rise to parts of the nervous system and several other tissues. But little is known about what determines which cells become neurons and which become other cell types.

Turning bad fat into good – A future treatment for obesity

Turning ‘bad’ fat into ‘good’: A future treatment for obesity? — Johns Hopkins researchers transform inert white fat into brown fat to burn off calories and weight – By knocking down the expression of a protein in rat brains known to stimulate eating, Johns Hopkins researchers say they not only reduced the animals’ calorie intake and weight, but also transformed their fat into a type that burns off more energy. The finding could lead to better obesity treatments for humans, the scientists report.