NYSCF in the News

NYSCF - Robertson Neuroscience Investigator Dr. Paola Arlotta, Harvard Stem Cell Institute and the Broad Institute of Harvard and MIT, showed that neuronal networks of communication between reprogrammed neurons and the surrounding cells can be changed. Essentially, that the neighboring cells of reprogrammed neurons recognize that they are changed, and therefore change how they communicate with the 'new' cells. This work, published in Neuron, builds on Dr. Arlotta's previous finding that neurons can be reprogrammed into different neuronal types in the brains of live animals, a result that upended traditional neurobiology dogma.

This research has vast implications on understanding how neural communication works and builds circuits in early development as well as how this communication frays and deteriorates in neurodegenerative and psychiatric diseases such as autism and schizophrenia.

 

Read more in the Harvard Gazette >>

Read the paper in Neuron >>

Wednesday, 21 October 2015 00:00

NYSCF Celebrates 10th Year at Annual Gala

This October, NYSCF honored Stephen M. Ross, Jack and Jeff Gernsheimer, and Mark McCauley as stem cell heroes at the 10th Anniversary Gala. Held at Skylight at Moynihan Station, the annual Gala brought together NYSCF friends, scientists, and supporters to celebrate the past 10 years of success and to look forward to the next ten years and beyond.

Wednesday, 07 October 2015 12:24

Stem Cells in Clinical Trials to Cure Blindness

In 2011 NYSCF awarded Dr. Pete Coffey the inaugural NYSCF–Robertson Stem Cell Prize for his pioneering work bringing stem cell therapies to patients with macular degeneration. Now patients in the UK can begin to realize the promises of regenerative medicine as treatments move into the clinic. Dr. Pete Coffey co-leads The London Project to Cure Blindness, which, with NYSCF support, has begun to translate stem cell research into cures. Announced in September, the first patient received treatment for ‘wet’ age-related macular degeneration. The researchers behind the clinical trial used stem cells to create a patch of eye cells, retinal pigment epithelium, to transplant into patients with diseased retinal pigment epithelium. Thus far, the patient remains healthy boding well for this clinical trial to confirm safety and efficacy.

 

Read more about The London Project >>

Learn more about The NYSCF–Robertson Prize >>

As part of CUNY’s ongoing Women in Science series, NYSCF CEO and Co-founder Susan L. Solomon was asked to speak at “Breaking Barriers to Success,” a panel discussion on how women make their way to the top of their fields. Solomon sat across other pioneering women in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) outside of academia: Tracy Day, CEO and Co-founder of World Science Festival, and Reshma Saujani, CEO and Founder of Girls Who Code. The event series organized by CUNY’s Advanced Science Research Center aspires to help women develop professionally and build a community of women scientists.

 

Read more about the panel >>

 

The National Institute of Health (NIH) invited Susan Solomon to chair and moderate a panel at September’s NIH Workshop on Reproducibility in Cell Culture Studies. The panel, within the “Emerging Challenges and Opportunities” session of the workshop focused on the difficulties of stem cells and engineered environments. Solomon explored the challenges of modeling diseases in a dish and approaches that NYSCF has taken to develop reproducible stem cell culture studies. Among conversations about guidelines for stem cell production and maintenance, genetic diversity represented by stem cells, and current biotechnology, the panel discussed how the NYSCF Global Stem Cell ArrayTM responds to the issues of reproducibility in the field by automating the production of stem cells to reduce human error and standardize the production of stem cells, increasing reproducibility of stem cell research. Dr. Scott Noggle, NYSCF Vice President of Stem Cell Research also participated on several other panels discussing various issues related to cell culture reproducibility.

 

Read more about the workshop >>

 

The MacArthur Foundation named Dr. Lorenz Studer a 2015 MacArthur Fellow. A Founding member of NYSCF’s Medical Advisory Board, Dr. Studer served on inaugural juries of NYSCF Innovator postdoctoral fellows program and NYSCF-Robertson Investigator programs. Additionally, three NYSCF-Druckenmiller Fellows have trained in Dr. Stuber's lab. He has helped shape the future of stem cell research—guiding and granting early career scientists awards for their efforts and potential, while pushing forward with the most innovative research. As a MacArthur ‘Genius’ Dr. Studer’s incredible work lifts the entire field of stem cell research bringing international attention and support toward realizing the potential of regenerative medicine. 
 
Dr. Studer’s research focuses on neurodegenerative diseases such as ALS and Parkinson’s. He takes advantage of human pluripotent stem cells to make neurons to model and treat these deleterious diseases in his laboratory. His research is concerned with directing pluripotent cells to differentiate and mature into specific types of neuronal cells. In this pursuit, he has discovered how to speed up the aging process of cells so his lab can study neurons at the age most relevant to disease and potential drug discovery. Currently, he is preparing for clinical trials to transplant lab-made dopaminergic neurons, brain cells lost in Parkinson’s disease, into the brains of Parkinson’s patients. He will moderate a panel at NYSCF’s Tenth Annual Translation Stem Cell Research Conference in October.
 
 
 
 
 
Photo Credit: John D. & Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation.
 
NYSCF Vice President of Stem Cell Research, Dr. Scott Noggle leads The Stem Cell Podcast through a behind-the-scenes view of NYSCF’s one-of-a-kind robotic technology that creates hundreds of stem cells in tandem. On Episode 53 of the Podcast, hosts Dr. Christopher Fasano and Dr. Yosif Ganat interview Dr. Noggle about the ins and outs of the NYSCF Global Stem Cell ArrayTM and discover some of the details about how this pioneering technology was refined to generate consistent and efficient reprogramming of patients’ cells.
 
Dr. Noggle speaks on the power of stems cells to “probe into individuals’ biology in the laboratory” and discusses the research needs the Array was developed to respond to. On the horizon, Dr. Noggle looks forward to the power of populations of patient-specific stem cells generated by the Array to act as platforms for testing, developing, and finding new uses for drugs.
 
 
 
 
 

Dr. Gary Gibson, Director of the Laboratory for Mitochondrial Biology and Metabolic Dysfunction in Neurodegeneration at Weill Cornell Medical College, joined NYSCF as a visiting scientist while on sabbatical this year. Dr. Gibson’s work focuses on age-related neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. The Wall Street Journal highlighted his recent research, which finds a connection between vitamin B1 deficits and Alzheimer’s disease.

This work is currently being tested in a clinical trial, administering a synthetic version of vitamin B1 to Alzheimer’s patients and analyzing the results. At NYSCF he will translate his work to stem cells to further elucidate the mechanisms of neurodegeneration.

 

Read more in the Wall Street Journal >>

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