The latest stem cell news, interviews, blogs and commentary

New EU stem cell research projects up and running

Several new stem cell research projects are off the starting blocks, thanks to major funding from the European Commission’s Framework 7 Programme. We’re excited that four of the new projects are collaborating with EuroStemCell. They all focus on different disease areas and types of stem cells, but they all have a common goal: to understand how stem cells work and how to control them so they can be used in treatments for patients. Read on to find out more about the new research.


“Ferdi” and the impossible challenges: a tribute to Prof. Ferdinando Rossi

With sadness, we heard this week of the death of Professor Ferdinando Rossi, a leading Italian biologist and close friend and colleague to many of our partners.  Prof Elena Cattaneo knew Prof Rossi well and has written a touching obituary, which we share with you here.


Ethics in action in stem cell research

As stem cell research moves towards new medical applications, research teams must resolve new ethical questions. For example, if cells are obtained from a human donor, how can they be used? What type of permission has been obtained from the donor or his/her family and what are the limits of this permission? These are the issues currently being tackled by the EU-funded stem cell research project STELLAR. Ton Rabelink, Coordinator of STELLAR, describes his experience of bringing biologists and ethicists together to tackle the practical ethical questions raised by their planned research.

New centre licenced to manufacture stem cells for human use opens in Galway

The Centre for Cell Manufacturing Ireland (CCMI) is set to launch today at the Regenerative Medicine Institute (REMEDI), National University of Ireland, Galway. It is the first facility in Ireland to receive a licence from the Irish Medicines Board to manufacture expanded stem cells for human use, and one of only five of its kind in Europe.

Stem cell banking: A UK perspective on a global challenge

The UK Stem Cell Bank was established in 2003 to store, characterise and supply ethically approved stem cells for medical research and treatment. It was the first government funded public service collection of stem cells and it has played an important role in developing and maintaining standards in the UK and internationally. So what exactly does it do and why do we need this type of stem cell banking?  Glyn Stacey, Director of the UK Stem Cell Bank, tells us more.

Stem cells and neurological disorders: new topic page

The potential of stem cells to treat neurological diseases is something we're regularly asked about, by patients, students, and others - via this website and when we're out and about. We now have lots of information on this subject, from fact sheets and FAQ to news stories and educational resources, and have pulled it together in a single topic page to make the information easier to find and navigate: Information and resources about stem cells and neurological disorders.

We're interested in your feedback on this page and on our coverage of stem cells and neurological disorders generally: What else would you like to see? Are there significant gaps in format or subject matter? So take a look and let us know.

The Human Connection

A guest post by PhD student Gillian Smith, who has helped to deliver stem cell events and workshops in Skye and Fort William as part of the Hope Beyond Hype: Scottish Stem Cell Stories project.

As a PhD student, I spend most of my time in the lab. Days can be long and sometimes lonely. And with the mental strain of one failed experiment after another and an ever-increasing list of unanswerable questions, it is easy to forget why I set out to become a researcher. It is easy to get lost in the narrow focus field of the lab and forget what the bigger picture is.  I am constantly thinking to myself, “Why am I doing this?” Of course, life as a PhD student is not meant to be easy, but if you are unable to see the meaning behind your work and the ultimate outcome that we all strive for, it is near impossible.

Stem Cell Research: Trends and Perspectives on the Evolving International Landscape

New report on stem cell research reveals the field is growing twice as fast as the world average.

Stem Cell Research: Trends and  Perspectives on the Evolving International Landscape presents a comprehensive analysis of the growth and development of the stem cell field, with particular focus on embryonic stem (ES) cell and induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cell research outputs. The report was jointly prepared by Elsevier, Kyoto University's Institute for Integrated Cell-Material Sciences (iCeMS) and EuroStemCell, and will be discussed on 6 December 2013 at the World Stem Cell Summit in San Diego.

Experiencing public engagement

We often spend time discussing science communication and public engagement with people trying it for the first time - scientists, educators and students. In the last few weeks, student Nia Powell has been on a work experience placement with us, trying her hand at writing about stem cells. Read on to find out more about her experience and what she learnt.





ISSCR and Institute of Medicine Workshop Recap: Unregulated Stem Cell-based Treatments

The International Society for Stem Cell Research (ISSCR) has for some years been a voice in the debate over unregulated stem cell treatments, advocating for careful oversight but cognizant of the plight of patients facing critical diseases and their need for hope.

Last week, the ISSCR, along with the Institute of Medicine of the USA, hosted a workshop to explore issues faced in the clinical application of stem cell treatments, in particular, the practice of unproven stem cell therapies. The meeting brought together representatives from the research and medical communities, national scientific and medical academies, regulatory advisors, consumer protection and patient advocacy groups.

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