April 2, 2016

    Japanese researchers have bred skin tissue out of reprogrammed stem cells. The tissue included sebaceous glands and hair follicles. Is it a first step towards the dream of “breeding” transplantable test-tube organs?

    To breed skin tissue, the team of researchers around Ryoji Takagi at the Tokyo University of Science used induced pluripotent stem cells, also known as iPS cells, from mice.

    Once transplanted onto a different mouse, the tissue was able to perform all the functions of normal skin, the scientists reported on April 1 in the journal “Science Advances.”


    Pea-sized brains: ‘Probably a hundred’ growing in labs

    The small white lumps of tissue grown in a lab aren’t much bigger than peas, but they have the same basic structure as a brain. Researchers can now grown human brains in jars – just like livers and other bodily tissues. (20.08.2015)

    Scientists in US and Japan achieve possible breakthrough on stem cells

    Stem cell cloning remains highly controversial

    Stem cell pioneers win Nobel medicine honors

    Cell pioneers take first prize of Nobel week

    iPS cells are “artificially reprogrammed” somatic cells. In other words: They’re cells which, at some point in their development, reach something of a cul-de-sac and are only able to develop into one specific kind of tissue.

    But after the reprogramming, these somatic cells are able to develop into any kind of organ cells.

    That makes them similar to embryonic stem cells, which are the only cells that naturally have this ability.

    Signal protein

    The researchers influenced the iPS cells in such a way that they formed tiny lumps of tissue, called “embryoid bodies.” Under normal circumstances, those lumps then develop into various forms of tissue uncontrollably.

    However, the scientists added a signal protein and implanted the cells close to the kidneys of the mice for some time.

    This triggered the development of skin cells, which included sebaceous glands, hair follicles and even muscle fibers.

    The scientists then transplanted the tissue to the skin of mice that were originally bred to have skin bare of hair follicles. After two weeks, the mice grew real hair.

    Furthermore, the transplanted tissue connected to the existing nerve and muscle cells.

    There is a high risk in stem cell research that the animals will grow tumors as the result of such experiments.

    In this case it did not happen, however – even after three months.

    All cells are descendants of stem cells, but only embryonic stem cells can develop into any other kinds of cell

    Future of spare organs

    One member of the research group, Takashi Tsuji, expressed hope that the method could one day be used to create functioning organs suited for transplants in a laboratory.

    Before the scientists look into other organ cells, however, they first want to see if it is possible to create human skin using the method in order to transplant it to burn victims.

    Andreas Trumpp, chairman of the department of stem cell research at the German Cancer Research Center in Heidelberg, told the German press agency dpa that the mouse model can only be seen as a first step towards the creation of human skin.

    “The study is an improvement on an existing concept. But it does not yet create clean and complete skin tissue, but rather small lumps with lots of hair follicles,” he said.

    Trumpp, who is also the director of the cancer research center’s Stem Cell Institute, added that the study has not yet proven whether the skin actually does fulfill all functions of natural skin, like functioning as a protective barrier or being able to sweat.

    The Japanese scientist Shinya Yamanaka received the 2012 Nobel Prize for medicine for inventing the process of reprogramming body cells into iPS cells, which he achieved in 2006.


    No comments

    Be the first one to leave a comment.

    Post a Comment



    Latest Posts

    Latest Video



    Catalia Health uses social robots to improve health outcomes

    Credit: Catalia Health SOURCE Catalia Health is leading the surge in social robotics, with Mabu, their patient care management system. Catalia…

    Ambry Genetics’ Big Data Sharing Program Now Available for Public Download

    SOURCE (So, WHY is this important?  Sounds like good Hangout fodder for the person that wants to know!) January 19,…

    Big data serves patients and people in increasingly broad ways

    Personal Connected Health Alliance executive vice president Patty Mechael explains how genomics, fitness devices and other wearables are engaging people…

    The Long Quest To Create Artificial Blood May Soon Be Over

    A drop of blood drips off a needle. Image Source via Getty Images SOURCE Blood, blood everywhere — but not…

    ‘5-D protein fingerprinting’ with nanopores could give insights into Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s

    SOURCE Jan 17, 2017 (Nanowerk News) In research that could one day lead to advances against neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s…

    A multichannel smartphone optical biosensor for high-throughput point-of-care diagnostics

    SOURCE This smartphone add-on claims to detect cancer with 99% accuracy There’s an app for that. Researchers have developed a…

    Nanoparticles awaken immune cells to fight cancer

    An artist’s conception of nanoparticles targeting tumor cells. Nicolle R. Fuller/Science Source SOURCE Tiny nanoparticles, far smaller than the width…

    Toward a ‘smart’ patch that automatically delivers insulin when needed

      SOURCE (Nanowerk News) Treatment for certain diabetes cases involves constant monitoring of blood-glucose levels and daily insulin shots. But…