Posted by Mary Canady February 25th, 2010 .
SABPA Science & Technology Forum VIII: Breakthroughs in Stem Cell Research and Clinical Applications
Type: Association Events
Location: Institute of Americas, UCSD
Date: March 13, 2010 (Saturday)
Location: Institute of Americas, UCSD (directionsavailable at www.sabpa.org)
$20 for online registration, $10 for students and post-docs
$40 for on-site registration, online registration ends March 10, 2009
Stem cell research, after nearly a decade’s progress, has achieved a landmark milestone in January 2009, with the US FDA’s permission of the first human clinical trial of embryonic stem cell therapy. Based on the original studies of Dr. Hans Keirstead’s group at UC Irvine, which has shown to restore limb function in rats with neck spinal cord injuries, this human clinical trial, sponsored by Geron Corp. of Menlo Park, Calif., is the first tested on individuals with thoracic spinal cord injuries. The FDA’s approval of this trial is achieved only after rigorous safety testing and consultation of countless experts, which marks the maturity of stem cell research for the treatment of human diseases in certain fields. In addition, more stem cell therapies are in the pipeline to move to the clinical stage in the near future. Besides the progress in clinical studies, tools and technologies in stem cell research are also gaining momentum in recent years. The power of stem cell research is not only limited to regenerative medicine, but also can be utilized to generate disease models for drug discovery. For instance, through the use of iPS cell technology, skin cells from the disease patients can be converted to any mature cell types that carry all the genetic information for the particular disease. These disease cells provide valuable tools for the discovery of new and novel drugs. This SABPA forum has invited opinion leaders from academic and industry to address the progress, challenge, and future direction of this vibrant field.
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