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Zebrafish make waves in our understanding of a common craniofacial birth defect

Children are not as hard-headed as adults—in a very literal sense. Babies are born with soft spots and flexible joints called sutures at the junctions where various sections of their skull bones meet. If these sutures fuse prematurely, the skull cannot expand to accommodate the child’s growing brain—a serious birth defect called craniosynostosis that can …

USC Stem Cell and BCRegMed Virtual Symposium brings Canada to California

It didn’t require plane tickets to bring together scientists from USC Stem Cell in Los Angeles and BCRegMed in Vancouver. During October’s Virtual Symposium, videoconferencing technology enabled these scientists to share ideas as if they were sitting in the same conference room—even though they were more than 1,200 miles apart.

Out of the woods: USC alumna and nature lover Anna Kuehl finds hope to restore her vision

Once upon a time, there was a little girl named Anna Kuehl who loved exploring the nature surrounding her home in the Bavarian Forest. Located northeast of Munich not far from the German-Czech border, this verdant landscape, called Bayerischer Wald, is a wooded, low-mountain region. Kuehl’s childhood took place in this idyllic setting, a beautiful …

Yang Chai elected to National Academy of Medicine

Yang Chai, associate dean of research at the Ostrow School of Dentistry of USC, has been elected to the National Academy of Medicine (NAM), a membership that is considered one of the highest honors in the fields of health and medicine. Chai is also a professor of stem cell biology and regenerative medicine, and the …

CIRM Stem Cell Awareness Day: Science Career Videos

In honor of CIRM’s Stem Cell Awareness Day, USC Stem Cell invites you to explore careers in science. Meet progressive master’s student Carina Seah, PhD student Kimberley Babos, postdoc Jorge Contreras and clinical fellow Abigail Zamora.

USC Stem Cell scientist Andy McMahon and collaborators tune into the organ concert

Every minute of every day, your organs are using a complex language to communicate with each other about the basic physiological processes necessary for life—everything from blood pressure regulation to pH balance to metabolism. To decipher this little-known language, USC Stem Cell scientist Andy McMahon has joined forces with top scientists at Harvard and Stanford …

All about egg freezing: A Q&A with Dr. Richard J. Paulson, USC Fertility

If you’re not going to complete your family by age 35, it’s time to freeze your eggs, according to Dr. Richard J. Paulson, director of USC Fertility. Egg freezing offers a shot at pausing the biological clock for patients who wish to preserve their fertility into their late forties. Even though eggs can be frozen …

USC Stem Cell scientist D’Juan Famer named Howard Hughes Medical Institute Hanna H. Gray Fellow

A little over a year after arriving at USC, D’Juan Farmer has been awarded one of the most prestigious fellowships available to postdoctoral fellows. The Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) Hanna H. Gray Fellows Program supports early-career life scientists from groups underrepresented in the life sciences. The fellows receive up to $1.4 million in funding …

At the retreat for USC’s stem cell department, the students become the masters

Students and trainees took center stage at the annual retreat for USC’s Department of Stem Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine. They presented their latest research to the 180 stem cell scientists who gathered at the event, held at the Pala Mesa Resort in Fallbrook, California this September.

A joint effort to understand cartilage development

Anyone with arthritis can appreciate how useful it would be if scientists could grow cartilage in the lab. To this end, Keck School of Medicine of USC scientists in the USC Stem Cell laboratory of Denis Evseenko, MD, PhD, collaborated with colleagues at several institutions to provide new insights into how gene activity drives the …

The USC scientist who aims to beat ALS, and the patients cheering him on

Justin Ichida regularly gets emails from strangers asking an urgent question: Will your research on ALS be done in time to save my life? “I don’t really know them, but they tell me their whole story,” said Ichida, a scientist with the USC Stem Cell program. “They’ll ask, ‘How long is it going to take …

USC Stem Cell scientists Neil Segil and Qi-Long Ying awarded NIH grants

Two USC Stem Cell scientists have received new research grants from the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

Request for Proposals: Eli and Edythe Broad Fellowship Award

A recent gift from The Eli and Edythe Broad Foundation established the Eli and Edythe Broad Society of Fellows at USC. An annual fellowship award of $80,000 that includes one year of salary and research support will be made to an exceptional senior postdoctoral researcher within USC’s stem cell research center. This investment and prestigious …

The Baxter Foundation awards grants to USC researchers Michael Bonaguidi and Sanda Win

From the brain to the bile, the Donald E. and Delia B. Baxter Foundation is supporting innovative medical research by granting $100,000 awards to two assistant professors: Michael Bonaguidi in the Department of Stem Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine; and Sanda Win in the Department of Medicine’s GI/Liver Division.

A Fox code for the face

In the developing face, how do stem cells know whether to become cartilage, bones or teeth? To begin to answer this question, scientists from the USC Stem Cell laboratory of Gage Crump tested the role of a key family of genes, called “Forkhead-domain transcription factors,” or Fox. Their findings appear in the journal Development.

Common psychiatric disorders share an overlapping genetic risk

Investigators found that many common psychiatric disorders are deeply connected on a genetic level, sharing specific genetic risk factors, underscoring the need to recognize shared dimensions of brain dysfunction, and develop new treatment strategies. Results of this investigation have been published in the June 22, 2018 issue of the journal, Science.

CHLA joins CureWorks collaborative to accelerate development of immunotherapy treatments for childhood cancers

Seattle Children’s, with participating members Children’s Hospital Los Angeles, Children’s National Health System and BC Children’s Hospital, has launched CureWorks, an international collaborative of leading academic children’s hospitals determined to accelerate the development of immunotherapy treatments for childhood cancer. CureWorks focuses on expanding immunotherapy trials and patient access around the world, as well as sharing …

USC scientists discover schizophrenia gene roles in brain development

A USC research team identified 150 proteins affecting cell activity and brain development that contribute to mental disorders, including schizophrenia, bipolar condition and depression. It’s the first time these molecules, which are associated with the disrupted-in-schizophrenia 1 (DISC1) protein linked to mental disorders, have been identified. The scientists developed new tools involving stem cells to …

From perfectly punctual to fashionably late, it takes all kinds to build a kidney

Running early or running late can have big consequences—especially when it comes to the progenitor cells involved in human kidney development. According to a new study in Developmental Cell from the USC Stem Cell laboratory of Andy McMahon, the progenitor cells that form the kidney’s filtering units, called nephrons, mature into entirely different types of …

Synthetic “tissues” build themselves

How do complex biological structures—an eye, a hand, a brain—emerge from a single fertilized egg? This is the fundamental question of developmental biology, and a mystery still being grappled with by scientists who hope to one day apply the same principles to heal damaged tissues or regrow ailing organs. Now, in a study published May 31 …

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