First Embryonic Stem Cells Cloned From A Man's Skin

hide captionThis mouse egg (top) is being injected with genetic material from an adult cell to ultimately create an embryo and, eventually, embryonic stem cells. The process has been difficult to do with human cells.

Eighteen years ago, scientists in Scotland took the nuclear DNA from the cell of an adult sheep and put it into another sheep’s egg cell that had been emptied of its own nucleus. The resulting egg was implanted in the womb of a third sheep, and the result was Dolly, the first clone of a mammal.

Dolly’s birth set off a huge outpouring of ethical concern along with hope that the same techniques, applied to human cells, could be used to treat myriad diseases.

But Dolly’s birth also triggered years of frustration. It’s proved very difficult to do that same sort of DNA transfer into a human egg.

Last year, scientists in Oregon said they’d finally done it, using DNA taken from infants. Robert Lanza, chief scientific officer at Advanced Cell Technology, says that was an important step, but not ideal for medical purposes.

“There are many diseases, whether it’s diabetes, Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s disease, that usually increase with age,” Lanza says. So ideally scientists would like to be able to extract DNA from the cells of older people not just cells from infants to create therapies for adult diseases.

Lanza’s colleagues, including Young Gie Chung at the CHA Stem Cell Institute in Seoul, Korea (with labs in Los Angeles as well), now report success.

Writing in the journal Cell Stem Cell, they say they started with nuclear DNA extracted from the skin cells of a middle-age man and injected it into human eggs donated by four women. As with Dolly, the women’s nuclear DNA had been removed from these eggs before the man’s DNA was injected. They repeated the process this time starting with the genetic material extracted from the skin cells of a much older man.

hide captionDolly, the first mammal to be genetically cloned from adult cells, poses for the camera in 1997 at the Roslin Institute in Edinburgh, Scotland.

Dolly, the first mammal to be genetically cloned from adult cells, poses for the camera in 1997 at the Roslin Institute in Edinburgh, Scotland.

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First Embryonic Stem Cells Cloned From A Man's Skin

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South Korean company cleared in deaths following stem cell …

Seoul, South Korea (CNN)– An international medical group has cleared a South Korean biopharmaceutical company in the deaths of two patients following stem …

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New Technology 'Grows' Man-Made Body Parts

Man-made (or lab-grown) organs have gone from science fiction to fact in recent years. While lab-grown ears have become famous thanks to the striking picture of a mouse with an ear grown on its back, recent technology, including 3-D printing and stem cell use, has meant more complex organs are being made by scientists.

Everything from ears to tracheas and, most recently, vaginas has been recreated in a lab setting. But doctors have also refined old-fashioned surgical techniques to give patients who have been disfigured a second nose or even a face through operations.

To show just how far this seemingly fantastical medicine has come, weve found a few of the most impressive man-made body parts.

See More Medical Marvels

A study published this week in the Lancet Medical Journal revealed how researchers were able to grow vaginas in a laboratory setting.

Researchers from Wake Forest University School of Medicine in Winston-Salem, N.C., and Metropolitan Autonomous University in Mexico City took tissue samples from four adolescent female patients from Mexico between the ages of 13 and 18, and then were able to construct vaginal components by culturing and expanding tissues in special incubators.

The patients, who were born with incomplete vaginas because of a genetic disorder, then underwent surgery and had the vaginal tissue implanted. In the years following the surgery, the patients reported normal sexual function.

In China, doctors were able to regrow a mans nose. The twist is that they had to temporarily put the nose on the mans forehead.

The patient identified as Xiaolian, according to Reuters, had an infection that left his nose damaged and disfigured.

To help him, doctors used tissue expanders and reshaped a second nose over a period of months on Xiaolians forehead. Eventually, when surgery is performed, theyll use cartilage from his rib to help strengthen his nose.

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Improved establishment of autologous stem cells derived …

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Gamete and Stem Cell Biotechnology Laboratory, Department of Agricultural Biotechnology, Seoul National University, Seoul, Korea.

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Abstract

This study was conducted to improve establishing autologous embryonic stem cells (ESCs) by culture of preantral follicles and parthenogenetic activation of oocytes. First, paternal inheritance of the follicle donor was changed without altering maternal heredity by employing B6CBAF1 instead of B6D2F1 mice. A significant increase in the establishment of parthenogenetic ESCs was detected after the change, and a different gene expression pro-file was detected in the ESCs established. Among 62 stemness-related genes showing different expression level between two strains, 35 (56.5%) were lower in the rarely established ESCs (B6D2F1) than in the easily established ESCs (B6CBAF1). Several paternally expressed genes were aberrantly expressed in the rarely established ESCs. Second, the establishment of parthenogenetic ESCs in B6D2F1 was significantly improved when preantral follicles were cultured in glutathione (GSH)-containing medium. In the ESCs derived from GSH-treated follicles, 77% of the 62 genes showing the difference increased their expression. Translation of several proteins related to stemness (Wnt-1, beta-catenin, p-p44/42, and smad) was similar between the parthenogenetic ESCs established after GSH treatment and the control E14 ESCs. We concluded that change in genetic inheritance and exposure of in vitro-growing ovarian follicles to GSH contributes to improving establishment of parthenogenetic ESCs, which may help increase the feasibility of the established lines for patient-specific, stem cell therapy.

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Stem Cell is the New Technology in Breast Augmentation

When referring a healthy looking body line, it means a firm body with curvy breast shape. Reflecting this trend, women today are paying a great attention to stem cell breast augmentation technology. Among all types of breast implants, the choice depends on ones body shape. As issues were raised, people now favor autotransplantation over foreign substances.

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Stem Cell is the New Technology in Breast Augmentation

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Stem Cell is the New Technology in Breast Implant

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Will Cloning Ever Save Endangered Animals?

Right now, cloning is not a viable conservation strategy. But some researchers remain optimistic that it will help threatened species in the future

James and snowmanradio, Wikimedia Commons

In 2009 the Brazilian Agricultural Research Corp. (Embrapa) and the Brasilia Zoological Garden began scavenging and freezing blood, sperm and umbilical cord cells from roadkill and other wild animals that had died, mostly in the Cerrado savannaan incredibly diverse collection of tropical forest and grassland ecosystems home to at least 10,000 plant species and more than 800 species of birds and mammals, some of which live nowhere else in the world. Specimens were collected from the bush dog, collared anteater, bison and gray brocket deer, among other species.

The idea was to preserve the genetic information of Brazil’s endangered wildlife. One day, the organizations reasoned, they might be able to use the collected DNA to clone endangered animals and bolster dwindling populations. So far the two institutions have collected at least 420 tissue samples. Now they are collaborating on a related project that will use the DNA in these specimens to improve breeding and cloning techniques. Current cloning techniques have an average success rate of less than 5 percent, even when working with familiar species; cloning wild animals is usually less than 1 percent successful.

Any animals born during Brazil’s new undertaking will live in the Brasilia Zoo, says Embrapa researcher Carlos Martins. Expanding captive populations of wild animals, he and his team hope, will discourage zoos and researchers from taking even more wild animals out of their native habitats. Martins and his colleagues have not yet decided which species they will attempt to clone but the maned wolf and jaguar are strong candidates. The International Union for Conservation of Nature classifies both animals as “near threatened” on its Red List of Threatened Species, two levels below “endangered.”

Many researchers agree that, at present, cloning is not a feasible or effective conservation strategy. First of all, some conservationists point out, cloning does not address the reasons that many animals become endangered in the first placenamely, hunting and habitat destruction. Even if cloning could theoretically help in truly desperate situations, current cloning techniques are simply too ineffective to make much of a difference. Compared with cloning domestic speciesparticularly cattle, which have been successfully cloned for years to duplicate desirable traitscloning endangered species is far more difficult for a number of reasons.

Successful cloning generally involves at least three essential components: DNA from the animal to be cloned; a viable egg to receive that DNA; and a mother to gestate the resulting embryo. Often, hundreds of embryos and attempted pregnancies are needed to produce even a few clones. Scientists usually have a poor understanding of endangered animals’ reproductive physiology, which makes it too risky to extract a sufficient number of eggs from that species or rely on females of that species to give birth to clones. Legal protections sometimes preclude threatened species from such procedures as well. To compensate, researchers fuse the DNA of an endangered species with eggs from a closely related species and select mothers from the latter. Such hybrid embryos often fail to develop properly.

Although they are keenly aware of these problems, Martins and his colleagues, as well as a few other scientists around the world, think that efforts to archive the genetic information of endangered wildlife are worthwhile. Some researchers remain optimistic that cloning will become a useful tool for conservation in the future. Optimists point to recent successes cloning wild mammals using closely related domestic species, improved techniques for preventing developmental abnormalities in a cloned embryo, better neonatal care for newborn clones and in vitro fertilization made possible by stem cells derived from frozen tissue.

The first clones In the early 1950s, at the Lankenau Hospital Research Institute in Philadelphia, Robert Briggs and Thomas King successfully cloned 27 northern leopard frogs through a process known as nuclear transfer. The nucleus, often called the command center of the cell, contains most of a vertebrate’s DNAexcept for the DNA within bean-shaped, energy-generating organelles named mitochondria. Briggs and King emptied frog eggs of their nuclei, sucked nuclei out of cells in frog embryos and injected those nuclei into the empty eggs. Many of the eggs developed into tadpoles that were genetically identical to the embryos that had donated their nuclear DNA.

In 1958 John Gurdon, then at the University of Oxford, and colleagues cloned frogs with nuclear DNA extracted from the cells of fully formed tadpoles. Unlike embryonic cells, which are genetically flexible enough to become a variety of different tissues, a tadpole’s cells are “differentiated”that is, the patterns of genes they express have changed to fit the profile of a specific cell type: a skin, eye or heart cell, for example. Gurdon demonstrated that, when transplanted into an egg, nuclear DNA from a mature cell reverts to the more versatile state characteristic of DNA in an embryo’s cells. This breakthrough encouraged scientists to try cloning far larger animals using DNA from adult cells.

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Chennai TOSH hospital treats knee arthritis with stem cells

An advanced surgery was performed at TOSH hospital on Saturday to treat a patient with knee arthritis, with the damaged cartilage in the knee regenerated using stem cells.

Prof. A.A. Shetty, director of minimally invasive surgery and stem cell research at Canterbury Christchurch University, UK, who performed the surgery, said all the Indian Council of Medical Researchs guidelines were adhered to while performing the procedure. He was speaking at a press meet on Saturday.

Under an earlier version of this technique, stem cells harvested in the bone marrow had to be cultured in the lab and then injected into the knee after six weeks. There were several disadvantages with this technique longer hospital stay, increased chances of infection, lower success rates and increased costs, he said.

However, under the new technique, the stem cells are harvested and centrifuged within the operation theatre. The stem cell concentrate is then mixed with a special fibrin gel and inserted directly at the site of the damaged cartilage through a keyhole procedure.

This surgery is less expensive, at around Rs. 75,000, and the patient can go home the next day. Its failure rate is only 10 to 15 per cent and it can also be performed on patients with advanced osteoarthritis, Prof. Shetty said.

A 49-year-old woman, on whom the surgery has been performed, is currently recovering at the hospital.

Prof. Seok Jung Kim, director of the regenerative medical system, South Korea, and S.H. Jaheer Hussain, orthopaedic and trauma surgeon, TOSH hospital, also participated in the meet.

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Convicted Korean scientist Hwang loses appeal

Convicted Korean scientist Hwang loses appeal (02-27 17:05) South Korea’s apex court has upheld a suspended prison term on disgraced cloning scientist Hwang Woo Suk on criminal charges related to faked research. A lower court in 2010 sentenced Hwang to 18 months in prison for embezzling research funds and illegally buying human eggs. But the court suspended the penalty. The Supreme Court on Wednesday made that ruling final. He will stay free unless he breaks laws in the next two years. Hwang scandalized the international scientific community in 2005 when his breakthrough human cloning research involving embryonic stem cells was found to have been faked. Hwang and his former colleagues created the world’s first cloned dog, Snuppy, in 2005, and that achievement was independently confirmed.AP

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Convicted Korean scientist Hwang loses appeal

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Disgraced SKorean cloning scientists faked research conviction upheld

Disgraced South Korean scientist Hwang Woo-suk. Pic: AP.

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) South Koreas top court on Thursday upheld a suspended prison term on disgraced cloning scientist Hwang Woo-suk on criminal charges related to faked research.

A lower court in 2010 sentenced Hwang to 18 months in prison for embezzling research funds and illegally buying human eggs. But the court suspended the penalty.

The Supreme Court said in a statement that it made that ruling final on Thursday. He will stay free unless he breaks laws in the next two years.

Hwang scandalized the international scientific community in 2005 when his breakthrough human cloning research involving embryonic stem cells was found to have been faked. Hwang later admitted the data was faked but claimed he had been deceived by a fellow researcher.

Hwang and his former colleagues created the worlds first cloned dog, Snuppy, in 2005, and that achievement was independently confirmed.

After being stripped of the rights to conduct stem cell research due to the scandal, Hwang has been focusing on cloning dogs, coyotes and other animals.

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Disgraced SKorean cloning scientists faked research conviction upheld

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