The makings of future news headlines about tomorrow’s life saving therapies starts in the biomedical research laboratory. Ideas abound; early successes and later failures and knowledge gained from both; the rare lightning bolt of an unexpected breakthrough discovery — this is a glimpse of the behind the scenes action of some of the world’s most acclaimed stem cell scientists’ quest to solve some of the human body’s most challenging mysteries. Stem cells — what lies ahead? The following chapters explore some of the cutting edge research featuring stem cells. Disease and disorders with no therapies or at best, partially effective ones, are the lure of the pursuit of stem cell research. Described here are examples of significant progress that is a prologue to an era of medical discovery of cell-based therapies that will one day restore function to those whose lives are now challenged every day — but perhaps in the future, no longer.
This volume describes the latest findings on transcriptional and translational regulation of stem cells. Both transcriptional activators and repressors have been shown to be crucial for the maintenance of the stem cell state. A key element of stem cell maintenance is repression of differentiation factors or developmental genes – achieved transcriptionally, epigenetically by the Polycomb complex, and post-transcriptionally by RNA-binding proteins and microRNAs. This volume takes two approaches to this topic – (1) illustrating the general principles outlined above through a series of different stem cell examples – embryonic, iPS and adult stem cells, and (2) describing several molecular families that have been shown to have roles in regulation of multiple stem cell populations.
Scientists believe that stem cells have the potential to revolutionize the treatment of numerous diseases and conditions. This guide covers recent advances in technologies and their applications in stem cell biology, addressing the use of both embryonic and adult stem cells and discussing diverse technologies, including genome-wide expression analysis, informatics, chemical genomics, and more. Applications covered encompass self-renewal, differentiation, reprogramming, and regeneration in model organisms. This is a premier reference for practicing professionals involved in stem cell research and students.