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FDA Approves Stem Cell Clinical Trial For Multiple Sclerosis

NEW YORK, Aug. 14, 2013 /PRNewswire/ --   The Tisch MS Research Center of New York announced today that it has received Investigational New Drug (IND) approval from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to commence a Phase 1 trial using autologous neural stem cells in the treatment of multiple sclerosis (MS).  MS is a chronic human autoimmune disease of the central nervous system that leads to myelin damage and neurodegeneration and affects approximately 2.1 million people worldwide.

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Jacob Blumenthal's curator insight, August 18, 2013 12:41 PM

In the approved clinical trial, mesenchymal stem cell-derived neural progenitor cells (MSC-NPs) will be isolated from the patient's bone marrow, expanded and tested prior to injection. Participants will receive three rounds of injections at three month intervals. Safety and efficacy parameters will be evaluated in all participants through regular follow-up visits.The approval of the trial will allow researchers, for the first time to test this treatment strategy in real human patients. Hopefully, this phase I trial will lead to further trials of other stem cells-based potential therapies.

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Rescooped by Susie Lunardi from Stem Cells & Tissue Engineering
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Team 'spikes' stem cells to generate myelin

Team 'spikes' stem cells to generate myelin | neuro-law-gical | Scoop.it

"Stem cell technology has long offered the hope of regenerating tissue to repair broken or damaged neural tissue. Findings from a team of UC Davis investigators have brought this dream a step closer by developing a method to generate functioning brain cells that produce myelin—a fatty, insulating sheath essential to normal neural conduction".



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Jacob Blumenthal's curator insight, August 28, 2013 11:22 PM

In the current study, researchers from UC Davis developed a novel protocol to efficiently induce embryonic stem cells (ESCs) to differentiate into oligodendroglial progenitor cells (OPCs), which can further differentiate into oligodendrocytes. Their protocol results in a pure population of OPCs, with fewer other cell types arising from the technique.

In the next step, they compared electrophysiological properties of the derived OPCs to naturally occurring OPCs. They found that unlike natural OPCs, the ESC-derived OPCs lacked sodium ion channels in their cell membranes, making them unable to generate spikes when electrically stimulated. Using viral transduction, the researchers introduced DNA that codes for sodium channels into the ESC-derived OPCs. These OPCs then expressed ion channels in their cells and developed the ability to generate spikes.

 

http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/stem.1515/abstract




Rescooped by Susie Lunardi from Stem Cells & Tissue Engineering
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FDA Approves Stem Cell Clinical Trial For Multiple Sclerosis

NEW YORK, Aug. 14, 2013 /PRNewswire/ --   The Tisch MS Research Center of New York announced today that it has received Investigational New Drug (IND) approval from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to commence a Phase 1 trial using autologous neural stem cells in the treatment of multiple sclerosis (MS).  MS is a chronic human autoimmune disease of the central nervous system that leads to myelin damage and neurodegeneration and affects approximately 2.1 million people worldwide.

Via Jacob Blumenthal
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Jacob Blumenthal's curator insight, August 18, 2013 12:41 PM

In the approved clinical trial, mesenchymal stem cell-derived neural progenitor cells (MSC-NPs) will be isolated from the patient's bone marrow, expanded and tested prior to injection. Participants will receive three rounds of injections at three month intervals. Safety and efficacy parameters will be evaluated in all participants through regular follow-up visits.The approval of the trial will allow researchers, for the first time to test this treatment strategy in real human patients. Hopefully, this phase I trial will lead to further trials of other stem cells-based potential therapies.

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UCLA researcher invents new tools to manage 'information overload' threatening neuroscience

UCLA researcher invents new tools to manage 'information overload' threatening neuroscience | neuro-law-gical | Scoop.it

Before the digital age, neuroscientists got their information in the library like the rest of us. But the explosion of neuroscience research has resulted in the publication of nearly 2 million papers — more data than any researcher can read and absorb in a lifetime.

 That's why a UCLA team has invented research maps. Easily accessible through an online app, the maps help neuroscientists quickly scan what is already known and plan their next study. The Aug. 8 edition of the journal Neuron describes these new tools.  "Information overload is the elephant in the room that most neuroscientists pretend to ignore," said principal investigator Alcino Silva, a professor of neurobiology at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA and professor of psychiatry at the Semel Institute for Neuroscience and Human Behavior at UCLA. "Without a way to organize the literature, we risk missing key discoveries and duplicating earlier experiments. Research maps will enable neuroscientists to quickly clarify what ground has already been covered and to fully grasp its meaning for future studies."


Via Ashish Umre
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Regenerative medicine breakthrough: lab-grown human heart tissue beats on its own

Regenerative medicine breakthrough: lab-grown human heart tissue beats on its own | neuro-law-gical | Scoop.it

Progress in regenerative medicine has been coming fast and furious in recent months: scientists are now using far-out tissue engineering techniques to restore liver function in mice, regrow human muscle, and even implant bioengineered blood vessels into ailing patients. Now, a team at the University of Pittsburgh has managed to grow human heart tissue that can beat autonomously in a petri dish — an exciting step towards devising transplantable replacement organs.

 

The group used induced pluripotent stem cells (iPS cells) to accomplish the feat. These mature human cells are first "reprogrammed" to an embryonic state, before being spurred to develop into a specialized type of cell. In this instance, iPS cells derived from human skin were induced to become multipotential cardiovascular progenitor (MCP) cells — basically heart cells that can further differentiate into three varieties of highly specialized cells required for cardiovascular function.

 

From there, scientists transplanted the cells onto a mouse heart that had been completely stripped — turning the organ into what's known as a "scaffold." Over a period of weeks, the transplanted human cells proliferated and differentiated, rebuilding the scaffold into a functional organ capable of beating on its own. Right now, the heart tissue contracts at a rate of 40 to 50 beats per minute (on-par with a human's resting heart rate) but needs to be further refined before it's capable of beating strongly enough to distribute blood, or speeding up and slowing down when necessary.

 

This isn't the first time that scientists have managed to engineer heart tissue — in recent years, other teams have created lab-grown beating rat hearts and even human heart tissue. The latter breakthrough, however, relied on embryonic stem cells, which can't be derived from a specific patient for subsequent, personalized transplant the way this new technique allows.

 

A full-sized, fully functional replacement human heart is, of course, several years off. But in the near future, scientists hope to develop personalized "patches" of human heart muscle to repair damaged organs, and hope to see their technique used to more accurately study the effects of new pharmaceuticals to treat cardiovascular ailments.


Via Dr. Stefan Gruenwald
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6 tips for turning that data science education into startup riches | GigaOM Tech News

6 tips for turning that data science education into startup riches | GigaOM Tech News | neuro-law-gical | Scoop.it

Data scientist has been deemed the sexiest job title of the 21st century, and there’s ample evidence to suggest that skills in the field are pretty much a license to print money. The only question is how much.

 

During a Tuesday afternoon panel at the ACM Knowledge Discovery and Data Mining conference in Chicago, four folks who’ve successfully made the jump from academia to entrepreneurship — and even into venture capital — shared some advice on how to maximize the return on a data science education. And although data scientists might have better prospects than most right now, it’s actually great advice for anybody finishing up a graduate program in any field or sitting pretty with a professorship and wondering what’s next. (And for a few more tips about starting big data companies, check out my recent post:

 

Want to start a big data company? Here are 5 things you need to know.)

 

Click headline to read more--


Via Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
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Rescooped by Susie Lunardi from Stem Cells & Tissue Engineering
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Huntington’s disease: how could stem cells help?

Huntington’s disease: how could stem cells help? | neuro-law-gical | Scoop.it
What is Huntington’s disease?Huntington’s Disease (HD) mainly affects nerve cells in the brain called medium spiny neurons (MSNs). MSNs receive and coordinate information from other neurons in the brain to control movement of the body, face and eyes.

Via Ella Buzhor, Jacob Blumenthal
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Ella Buzhor's curator insight, July 7, 2013 3:42 AM

Comprehensive explanation of the possible benefits of the stem cell tharapy to Huntington’s Disease treatment. Emphasizing the need of the replacemant of the lost cells ( medium spiny neurons)  in the brain.

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Cell Stem Cell - Stem Cells in the Face: Tooth Regeneration and Beyond

Cell Stem Cell - Stem Cells in the Face: Tooth Regeneration and Beyond | neuro-law-gical | Scoop.it

Summary: "The face distinguishes one person from another. Postnatal orofacial tissues harbor rare cells that exhibit stem cell properties. Despite unmet clinical needs for reconstruction of tissues lost in congenital anomalies, infections, trauma, or tumor resection, how orofacial stem/progenitor cells contribute to tissue development, pathogenesis, and regeneration is largely obscure. This perspective article critically analyzes the current status of our understanding of orofacial stem/progenitor cells, identifies gaps in our knowledge, and highlights pathways for the development of regenerative therapies".


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Jacob Blumenthal's curator insight, August 5, 2013 11:50 AM

This is a free review from Cell Stem Cell describing stem cells in the face. It was first published in September 2012, and is now available as part of the Featured Five review collection.

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To learn more about the embryonic development of the head mesenchyme and the bones:

http://discovery.lifemapsc.com/in-vivo-development/head-mesenchyme

http://discovery.lifemapsc.com/in-vivo-development/bone

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For stem cells differentiation protocols:

http://discovery.lifemapsc.com/stem-cell-differentiation/protocols

 

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Efficient model for generating human induced pluripotent stem cells

Efficient model for generating human induced pluripotent stem cells | neuro-law-gical | Scoop.it

Researchers at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine report a simple, easily reproducible RNA-based method of generating human induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) in the August 1 edition of Cell Stem Cell. Their approach has broad applicability for the successful production of iPSCs for use in human stem cell studies and eventual cell therapies.


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Jacob Blumenthal's curator insight, August 2, 2013 3:16 AM

Researchers from UCSD report on  a simple, highly reproducible RNA-based iPSC generation approach that utilizes a single, synthetic self-replicating VEE-RF RNA replicon that expresses four reprogramming factors (OCT4, KLF4, and SOX2, with c-MYC or GLIS1) at consistent high levels prior to regulated RNA degradation. A single VEE-RF RNA transfection into newborn or adult human fibroblasts resulted in efficient generation of iPSCs with all the hallmarks of stem cells, including cell surface markers, global gene expression profiles, and in vivo pluripotency, to differentiate into all three germ layers.

 http://www.cell.com/cell-stem-cell/abstract/S1934-5909(13)00259-2

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To learn more about stem cells and differentiation protocols:

http://discovery.lifemapsc.com/stem-cell-differentiation/protocols

http://discovery.lifemapsc.com/stem-cell-differentiation/in-vitro-cells


Rescooped by Susie Lunardi from Stem Cells
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Ethics of Stem Cells Created by Therapeutic Cloning - The National Catholic Bioethics Center

Ethics of Stem Cells Created by Therapeutic Cloning - The National Catholic Bioethics Center | neuro-law-gical | Scoop.it
Ethics of Stem Cells Created by Therapeutic Cloning - The National Catholic Bioethics Center http://t.co/535hkuEbQg

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Scientists Fabricate Rudimentary Human Livers

Scientists Fabricate Rudimentary Human Livers | neuro-law-gical | Scoop.it
Researchers who began with human stem cells derived from skin report that tiny livers like those seen early in fetal life grew into functioning organ buds when transplanted into mice.

Via Ella Buzhor, Burhan Gharaibeh
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'Artificial bones' generated from umbilical cord stem cells

'Artificial bones' generated from umbilical cord stem cells | neuro-law-gical | Scoop.it
Scientists have successfully developed 'artificial bones' from umbilical cord stem cells, paving way for repair of bones. ('Artificial bones' generated from umbilical cord stem cells...

Via Ella Buzhor, Burhan Gharaibeh
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Stem cell discovery: Astrocytes could repair stroke brain damage - Medical News Today

Stem cell discovery: Astrocytes could repair stroke brain damage - Medical News Today | neuro-law-gical | Scoop.it
Stem cell discovery: Astrocytes could repair stroke brain damage Medical News Today Stem cell research has focused until now on developing stroke treatments using therapeutic neurons to stimulate electrical impulses in the brain, and restore tissue...

Via Jacob Blumenthal, Burhan Gharaibeh
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Jacob Blumenthal's curator insight, July 29, 2013 5:11 AM

A recent open-access study, published in Nature Communications, suggests that Olig2-positive neuronal progenitors, derived from human embryonic stem cells, can generate a subtype of astcroglia, that have a protective effect. This effect was demonstrated when the cells were transplanted into brains subjected to global ischaemia.

http://www.nature.com/ncomms/2013/130723/ncomms3196/full/ncomms3196.html

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Longevity gene tied to nerve stem cell regeneration, say Stanford researchers-scopeblog.stanford.edu

Geneticist Anne Brunet, PhD, thinks a lot about aging. Much of her research focuses on understanding why some people and animals live much longer than their peers. She’s characterized some proteins, including one called FOXO3, that play a role in this process. 


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Jacob Blumenthal's curator insight, July 30, 2013 12:31 AM

In a research, published in Cell Reports, the geneticist Anne Brunet describes how the pro-longevity factor FOXO3 works in stem cells from the adult brain. Her research team successfuly identified FOXO3 direct targets genome-wide in primary cultures of adult neural progenitor cells (NPCs).

http://www.cell.com/cell-reports/fulltext/S2211-1247(13)00327-6

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International Stem Cell Corporation enters into clinical research agreement for Parkinson's Disease program

International Stem Cell Corporation, (ISCO, www.internationalstemcell.com), a California-based biotechnology company developing novel stem cell-based therapies, announced today that it has entered into a master clinical research agreement with Duke University to conduct clinical trials research in Parkinson's disease using ISCO's innovative neural stem cell product.

Via Jacob Blumenthal
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Jacob Blumenthal's curator insight, August 28, 2013 1:51 AM

ISCO's Parkinson's disease program uses human parthenogenetic neural stem cells (hPNSC), a novel therapeutic cellular product derived from the company's proprietary histocompatible human pluripotent stem cells. The hPNSC are self-renewing mulitpotent cells that are precursors for the major cells of the central nervous system. The ability of hPNSC to (1) differentiate into dopaminergic neurons and (2) express neurotrophic factors such as glial derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) and brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) to protect the nigrostriatal system, offers a new and revolutionary opportunity for the treatment of Parkinson's disease, especially in cases where current dopamine-replacement approaches fail to adequately control the symptoms.

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To learn about the embryonic development of dopaminergic neurons:

http://discovery.lifemapsc.com/in-vivo-development/dopaminergic-neurons


Stem cell differentiation protocols:

http://discovery.lifemapsc.com/stem-cell-differentiation/protocols

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Developmental on-switch: Substances that convert body cells back into stem cells initially activate all genes in the embryo

Developmental on-switch: Substances that convert body cells back into stem cells initially activate all genes in the embryo | neuro-law-gical | Scoop.it
Researchers have demonstrated for the first time why the molecular cocktail responsible for generating stem cells works.

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Jacob Blumenthal's curator insight, August 19, 2013 3:44 AM

Researchers from Freiburg university found that zebrafish Pou5f1, a homolog of the mammalian pluripotency transcription factor Oct4, occupies SOX-POU binding sites before the onset of zygotic transcription and activates the earliest zygotic genes. 

The paper was published in Science:

http://www.sciencemag.org/content/early/2013/08/14/science.1242527

 

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To learn about stem cells and their related differentiation protocols:

http://discovery.lifemapsc.com/stem-cell-differentiation/in-vitro-cells

http://discovery.lifemapsc.com/stem-cell-differentiation/protocols

 

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Science owes much to both Christianity and the Middle Ages

Science owes much to both Christianity and the Middle Ages | neuro-law-gical | Scoop.it
Science owes much to both Christianity and the Middle Ages by James Hannam The award of the Templeton Prize to the retired president of the Royal Society, Martin Rees, has reawakened the controversy over science and religion.
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'Denim disgusts me and candles just make me embarrassed': Woman, 22, suffers with condition that makes her emotional after touching certain textures

'Denim disgusts me and candles just make me embarrassed': Woman, 22, suffers with condition that makes her emotional after touching certain textures | neuro-law-gical | Scoop.it

Dr Vilayanur Ramachandran, of the University of California, saw a patient who suffers with an extreme form of synesthesia, a condition that causes senses and emotions to become confused.

 

An unnamed woman suffers with an extreme form of synesthesia, a condition that causes senses and emotions to become confused

 

Touching silk leaves her contented, being near multi-coloured toothpaste makes her feel anxious and certain grades of sandpaper induce guilt

 

Another patient seen by Dr Vilayanur Ramachandran of the University of California feels disappointed by corduroy and irritated by bok choy


Via Ashish Umre
Susie Lunardi's insight:

I love reading about Rama :) Was just reading his book "Phantoms in the Brain" last night! Highly recommended.

 

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A Theoretically Based Index of Consciousness Independent of Sensory Processing and Behavior

One challenging aspect of the clinical assessment of brain-injured, unresponsive patients is the lack of an objective measure of consciousness that is independent of the subject’s ability to interact with the external environment. Theoretical considerations suggest that consciousness depends on the brain’s ability to support complex activity patterns that are, at once, distributed among interacting cortical areas (integrated) and differentiated in space and time (information-rich). We introduce and test a theory-driven index of the level of consciousness called the perturbational complexity index (PCI). PCI is calculated by (i) perturbing the cortex with transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) to engage distributed interactions in the brain (integration) and (ii) compressing the spatiotemporal pattern of these electrocortical responses to measure their algorithmic complexity (information). We test PCI on a large data set of TMS-evoked potentials recorded in healthy subjects during wakefulness, dreaming, nonrapid eye movement sleep, and different levels of sedation induced by anesthetic agents (midazolam, xenon, and propofol), as well as in patients who had emerged from coma (vegetative state, minimally conscious state, and locked-in syndrome). PCI reliably discriminated the level of consciousness in single individuals during wakefulness, sleep, and anesthesia, as well as in patients who had emerged from coma and recovered a minimal level of consciousness. PCI can potentially be used for objective determination of the level of consciousness at the bedside.


Via Ashish Umre
Susie Lunardi's insight:

I theorize that our bodies are merely the biological vehicle/temple that house our spirits, which are a piece of the greater whole - the universal higher consciousness. I believe dreams are a travel state, in which a minimal amount of our consciousness stays with our bodies in this 3D reality we perceive. The brain is a powerful computer which allows us the gift to manipulate the word - as do our hands, eyes, feet, etc. The electrical connections we share with other people in the passing of knowledge (communication, teaching, learning, gestures, eye contact, etc.) are a part of the conscious surge/current.

 

I believe consciousness is outside the brain - as I also believe memories are stored outside the brain, and we tap back into them. They become electrical signals floating in our exterior world - like a cloud of information, which we tap back into.

 

 

Of course these are very speculative theories - but why not?

No one has successful incorporated the mind into the brain, and it is due to the lack of acceptance that spirituality is a huge part of our essence.

 

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Highly efficient differentiation of neural precursors from human embryonic stem cells and benefits of transplantation after ischemic stroke in mice -Stem Cell Research & Therapy


Via Jacob Blumenthal
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Jacob Blumenthal's curator insight, August 8, 2013 12:06 PM

Researchers diffrentiate human embryonic stem cells into neuronal progenitors using small molecules in smad-inhibition protocol. These neuronal progenitors differentiate in-vitro into neuronal cells. In addition, they differentiated in-vivo upon transplantation into a murine stroke model.

The paper's provosional PDF file can be downloaded from the journal's site.

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To learn about the embryonic development of the brain:

http://discovery.lifemapsc.com/in-vivo-development/brain

 

For stem cells neuronal differentiation protocols:

http://discovery.lifemapsc.com/stem-cell-differentiation/protocols

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Reprogramming cells by computer | KurzweilAI

Reprogramming cells by computer | KurzweilAI | neuro-law-gical | Scoop.it

Scientists at the Luxembourg Centre for Systems Biomedicine (LCSB) of the University of Luxembourg have developed a model that makes predictions that allow for deciding which differentiated cells — for instance skin cells — can be very efficiently changed into completely different cell types — such as nerve cells, for example.


Via Jacob Blumenthal
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Rescooped by Susie Lunardi from Freedom by Living Mindfully, with Compassion
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Cognitive Filtering, Meditation, Creativity

Cognitive Filtering, Meditation, Creativity | neuro-law-gical | Scoop.it

Reduced latent inhibition in the brain allows us to treat something as novel, no matter how may times we've seen it - something that experienced meditators seem to do - which may enhance creativity.

 

In his post Why Daydreamers Are More Creative, cognitive psychologist Scott Barry Kaufman, PhD covers a number of fascinating topics relating to the creative mind, including Latent inhibition.


Via Douglas Eby, John Bloise
Susie Lunardi's insight:

"Learning a living meditation" - love it.

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Carol Sanford's curator insight, July 22, 2013 8:57 AM

Learning a living mediation is a way to do this- so it is happening during interactions, not just sitting time. We introduce Living Systems frameworks that enable people to treat something as novel. It is because it reduces the reactivity people normally feel and competititiveness that causing rejection of the "new". Certainly all of this is needed for creativity, which is in short supply when Responsible Entrepreneurs are trying to grow a business. They far too often fall back on tried and "true", or worse, what is familar. 

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Scientists Fabricate Rudimentary Human Livers

Scientists Fabricate Rudimentary Human Livers | neuro-law-gical | Scoop.it
Researchers who began with human stem cells derived from skin report that tiny livers like those seen early in fetal life grew into functioning organ buds when transplanted into mice.

Via Ella Buzhor, Burhan Gharaibeh
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Stem Cell Basics: Educational cartoon for young learners

Take a peek into our microscope for a lesson in stem cell basics! This video is a component of the Pittsburgh Tissue Engineering Iniative-Carnegie Science Ce...

Via Bonnie Bracey Sutton, Joe Riggs, Lee Buckler, Burhan Gharaibeh
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Bonnie Bracey Sutton's curator insight, June 15, 2013 2:37 PM

Engaging lesson on STEM cell basics....share.

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Japan to start stem-cell study on humans : Nature News Blog

Japan to start stem-cell study on humans : Nature News Blog | neuro-law-gical | Scoop.it

On 1 August, researchers at the RIKEN Center for Developmental Biology in Kobe, Japan, will start recruiting patients for the world's first clinical study using induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells.


Via Jacob Blumenthal
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Jacob Blumenthal's curator insight, July 31, 2013 11:07 PM

Ophthalmologist Masayo Takahashi will be using sheets of retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) cells, derived from iPS cells, to try to halt the progression of age-related macular degeneration. In the wet-type AMD targeted by Takahashi, abnormal vascularization invades and destabilizes the epithelium, which supports the photoreceptors, and causes loss of vision.

To learn more about stem cells differentiation protocols towards retina cells, photoreceptors and RPE:

http://discovery.lifemapsc.com/stem-cell-differentiation/protocols


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Researchers regenerate retina in mice | Stem Cells Freak

Researchers regenerate retina in mice | Stem Cells Freak | neuro-law-gical | Scoop.it

Researchers from the Centre for Genomic Regulation (CRG) in Barcelona have managed to regenerate the retina in mice using neuronal reprogramming. There are currently several lines of research that explore the possibility of tissue regeneration through cell reprogramming. One of the mechanisms being studied is reprogramming through cell fusion.



Via Jacob Blumenthal
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Jacob Blumenthal's curator insight, July 12, 2013 11:44 AM

In this paper, published in "Cell Reports", researchers demonstrate how

upon activation of Wnt/beta-catenin signaling, mouse retinal neurons can be
transiently reprogrammed in vivo back to a precursor stage. This occurs after their spontaneous fusion with transplanted hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells (HSPCs). Newly formed hybrids can proliferate, commit to differentiation toward a neuroectodermal lineage, and

finally develop into terminally differentiated neurons.

This is an open-access article:

http://www.cell.com/cell-reports/fulltext/S2211-1247(13)00293-3