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Focus on stem cells

The explosion of interest in stem cells, over the past decade or so, in both basic and translational research has encouraged three of BioMed Central's flagship journals, BMC Biology, BMC Medicine and Genome Medicine, to come together to present a series of specially commissioned comment and review articles on stem cell biology and medicine. In this thematic series we aim to highlight some of the most important and topical issues - including recent advances, controversies and challenges in stem cell research, and of course their clinical implications. To supplement the comment and review, relevant original research articles will be added to the series as they are published. Stem cell genomics: new thematic series. Genome Medicine 2011, 3:34. An editorial by Guest Editor Stuart Orkin introduces this new series of articles, highlighting progress in genomic-scale studies of stem cells and cellular reprogramming that could impact medicine. Stem cell therapy clinical trials. BMC Medicine 2011, 9:52. Trounson and colleagues review recent developments and future prospects of clinical trials for stem cell therapies, highlighting usage of mesenchymal and neural stem cells, and reporting on the start of trials involving lines derived from pluripotent cells. Focus on stem cell individuality. BMC Biology 2011, 9:40. Arthur Lander reflects on how current assumptions that stem cells divide asymmetrically and are programmed to produce the right differentiated cell types at the right times may fail to acknowledge a fundamental contribution of stem cell individuality.

  1. Content type: Commentary

    A half century after John Gurdon demonstrated nuclear reprogramming, for which he was awarded the 2012 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine, his group provides insights into the molecular mechanisms whereby c...

    Authors: Peter J Skene and Steven Henikoff

    Citation: BMC Biology 2012 10:83

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  2. Content type: Research

    Glioblastoma multiforme, the most common type of primary brain tumor in adults, is driven by cells with neural stem (NS) cell characteristics. Using derivation methods developed for NS cells, it is possible to...

    Authors: Pär G Engström, Diva Tommei, Stefan H Stricker, Christine Ender, Steven M Pollard and Paul Bertone

    Citation: Genome Medicine 2012 4:76

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  3. Content type: Research article

    Stem cell injection therapies have been proposed to overcome the limited efficacy and adverse reactions of bulking agents. However, most have significant limitations, including painful procurement, requirement...

    Authors: Bum Soo Kim, So Young Chun, Jong Kil Lee, Hyun Ju Lim, Jae-sung Bae, Ho-Yun Chung, Anthony Atala, Shay Soker, James J Yoo and Tae Gyun Kwon

    Citation: BMC Medicine 2012 10:94

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  4. Content type: Research article

    Inability to control autoimmunity is the primary barrier to developing a cure for type 1 diabetes (T1D). Evidence that human cord blood-derived multipotent stem cells (CB-SCs) can control autoimmune responses ...

    Authors: Yong Zhao, Zhaoshun Jiang, Tingbao Zhao, Mingliang Ye, Chengjin Hu, Zhaohui Yin, Heng Li, Ye Zhang, Yalin Diao, Yunxiang Li, Yingjian Chen, Xiaoming Sun, Mary Beth Fisk, Randal Skidgel, Mark Holterman, Bellur Prabhakar…

    Citation: BMC Medicine 2012 10:3

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  5. Content type: Review

    Stem cells hold great promise for pancreatic beta cell replacement therapy for diabetes. In type 1 diabetes, beta cells are mostly destroyed, and in type 2 diabetes beta cell numbers are reduced by 40% to 60%....

    Authors: Gordon C Weir, Claudia Cavelti-Weder and Susan Bonner-Weir

    Citation: Genome Medicine 2011 3:61

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  6. Content type: Review

    There are many reasons to be interested in stem cells, one of the most prominent being their potential use in finding better drugs to treat human disease. This article focuses on how this may be implemented. R...

    Authors: Lee L Rubin and Kelly M Haston

    Citation: BMC Biology 2011 9:42

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  7. Content type: Review

    Human pluripotent cells such as human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) and induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) and their in vitro differentiation models hold great promise for regenerative medicine as they provide...

    Authors: Alvaro Rada-Iglesias and Joanna Wysocka

    Citation: Genome Medicine 2011 3:36

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  8. Content type: Research article

    The human anterior cruciate ligament (hACL) and medial collateral ligament (hMCL) of the knee joint are frequently injured, especially in athletic settings. It has been known that, while injuries to the MCL ty...

    Authors: Jianying Zhang, Tiffany Pan, Hee-Jeong Im, Freddie H Fu and James HC Wang

    Citation: BMC Medicine 2011 9:68

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  9. Content type: Review

    In recent years, clinical trials with stem cells have taken the emerging field in many new directions. While numerous teams continue to refine and expand the role of bone marrow and cord blood stem cells for t...

    Authors: Alan Trounson, Rahul G Thakar, Geoff Lomax and Don Gibbons

    Citation: BMC Medicine 2011 9:52

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