NYSCF in the News
Tuesday, 27 September 2016 15:07

NYSCF Talks in East Hampton and at Mount Sinai

NYSCF CEO Susan L. Solomon discussed NYSCF’s many roles in research and policy in two events this past month. 
The East Hampton Library invited Ms. Solomon to speak about “Cells and Souls: Frontiers in Stem Cell Research” as part of their 2016 Tom Twomey Lecture Series. The talk, hosted by Sheila Rogers, focused on how advanced stem cell research is ushering in the future of regenerative medicine including first steps towards personalized treatments. The Tom Twomey Series features guest lectures from people with a wide variety of backgrounds and runs from April to October annually. 
The second talk kicked off the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai science policy seminar series. Ms. Solomon discussed “Stem Cell Policy – Who Get’s to Decide?” and the role of the patient voice in scientific research. The talk focused on how and why Ms. Solomon started NYSCF in 2005, her role as a patient advocate, and how NYSCF has worked for changes in current stem cell policy and regulations.

NYSCF – Druckenmiller Fellow Dr. Hongda Li, The Rockefeller University, was first author on two papers investigating the zika virus. The first paper, published in Cell Stem Cell, described how zika may affect adult brain cells in addition to the mounting evidence that it causes abnormalities in the brains of developing fetuses. Using adult mouse models, the scientists showed that zika infects neural progenitor cells, cells thought to be critical in learning and memory. 

The second paper in The American Journal of Human Genetics identified genetic mutations linked to the mechanisms causing autosomal-recessive primary microcephaly, a genetic form of microcephaly. This research helps illuminate the specific genetic pathways leading to microcephaly, a devastating side effect of zika infection in utero.


Read more from The Rockefeller University >>

Read more in Infection Control Today >>

Read the paper in Cell Stem Cell >>

Read the paper in The American Journal of Human Genetics >>

NYSCF – Robertson Investigator Alumna Dr. Shuibing Chen published her latest work in Cell Stem Cell creating stem cell models of type 2 diabetes in a step towards applying knowledge from genome-wide association studies to drug discovery efforts. Dr. Chen and her team at Weill Cornell Medical College created human stem cell models with genetic mutations in genes associated with the development of type 2 diabetes as identified through genome-wide association studies. 

These stem cell models allow scientists to further interrogate the genes in question without harming patients, paving the way for precision therapy for metabolic diseases including type 2 diabetes.


Read the paper in Cell Stem Cell >>

NYSCF - Robertson Neuroscience Investigator Dr. Kay Tye, MIT, was awarded the 2016 Freedman Prize for Exceptional Basic Research for her project “Identifying Unique Neural Circuits for Anxiety Control.” The Klerman and Freedman Prizes are granted by the Brain and Behavior Research Foundation to exceptional researchers that have been supported by the NARSAD Young Investigator Grant.

Dr. Tye uses optogenetic, pharmacological, electrophysiological, and imaging techniques to study brain circuitry to elucidate pathways implicated in anxiety disorders, which represent the most common form of psychiatric illnesses.


Read more in MIT News >>

Thirst as a motivator for animals to maintain healthy hydration has long been viewed as a homeostatic response to blood volume and other physiological factors; however, this response is so fast that it is anticipatory, and the mechanisms of which are poorly understood.

NYSCF - Robertson Neuroscience Investigator Dr. Zachary Knight and his team at the University of California, San Francisco, published their latest results exploring this phenomenon in mice. The scientists found an unexpected role for the subfornical (SFO) organ in the anticipatory regulation of thirst in mice, showing that thirst-promoting SFO neurons respond to inputs from the mouth during eating and drinking and then integrate these inputs with information about the composition of the blood.

These results provide a neural mechanism to explain longstanding observations about thirst in animals, including the prevalence of drinking during meals and the rapid satiation of thirst.


Read more from USCF >>

Read the paper in Nature >>

Thursday, 04 August 2016 11:09

NYSCF Innovator Untangles Sustained Immunity

NYSCF - Robertson Stem Cell Investigator Dr. Deepta Bhattacharya, Washington University School of Medicine, published his latest work exploring the metabolic properties that allow for a sustained immune response after infection or immunization. The research describes how a combination of glucose uptake and mitochondrial pyruvate import allow a specific type of plasma cell to sustain durable antibody production.

Understanding the exact mechanisms of immunity and immune response will allow for new treatments for autoimmune and immune-related disorders.


Read the paper in Immunity >>

NYSCF - Robertson Neuroscience Investigator Dr. Ed Boyden, MIT Media Lab, published two papers elaborating on the uses for his groundbreaking imaging technique, expansion microscopy. 

Published in Nature Biotechnology and Nature Methods, the papers describe expansion microscopy using conventional fluorescently labeled antibodies and proteins, as well as the techniques use in nanoscale RNA imaging. 

These new techniques build on the already-groundbreaking expansion microscopy technique, which enables the study of nanoscale biological structures with conventional diffraction-limited microscopes.


Read the paper in Nature Biotechnology >>

Read the paper in Nature Methods >>

NYSCF – Robertson Neuroscience Investigator Dr. Dragana Rogulja, Harvard Medical School, published her lastest research studying the sex drive of male fruit flies to glean insights into how animals choose behaviors.

Published in Neuron, the researchers showed that the mating drive in male fruit flies is controlled by dopamine levels in one specific area of the brain, shedding light on how animals make and carry out decisions to perform or not to perform a behavior. The findings showed how changes to an internal state, in this case dopamine levels, can change behavior against what an animal was previously motivated to do. This research helps shed light on how behaviors are motivated across species.


Read more on Phys.org >>

Read the paper in Neuron >> 

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