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Rong Lu (right) and Du Jiang (Photo by Gal Manella)

USC Stem Cell study shows how gene activity modulates the amount of immune cell production in mice

As people age or become ill, their immune systems can become exhausted and less capable of fighting off viruses such as the flu or COVID-19. In a new mouse study funded in …

Building an Incubator for Medicine of the 21st Century

Building an Incubator for Medicine of the 21st Century

USC Stem Cell is pleased to introduce our new publication. We hope you’ll enjoy reflecting back on our history, while looking ahead to the transformative times to come. Read now at https://stemcell.keck.usc.edu/wp-content/themes/stemcell/incubator.

(Image courtesy of iStock)

$2 million grant boosts technological advancements in cutting-edge cell therapy manufacturing facility

The Keck School of Medicine of USC has received $2 million from the California Institute of Regenerative Medicine (CIRM) to further augment its newly launched cGMP Laboratory, a state-of-the-art facility designed to …

Berenice Benayoun (Photo by Charles Camarda)

USC Professor Bérénice Benayoun receives grant to study menopause and ovarian aging

Bérénice Benayoun, assistant professor of gerontology at the USC Leonard Davis School, received a $200,000 grant from the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative (CZI). The funding will support Benayoun’s work in understanding the molecular …

From left, study authors Jiya Eerdeng, Ivon Garcia, Rong Lu, Charles Bramlett, Mary Vergel-Rodriguez, and Yeachan Lee (Photo by Bowen Wang)

Why does a leukemic mutation not always lead to leukemia? A new clue from a mouse study at USC

Why do some people with a genetic mutation associated with leukemia remain healthy, while others with the same mutation develop the blood cancer? In a new study published in Blood, scientists from …

Pinchas Cohen (Image courtesy of the USC Davis School of Gerontology)

Pinchas Cohen named USC Distinguished Professor

Pinchas Cohen, dean of the USC Leonard Davis School of Gerontology, has been named a Distinguished Professor, an honor that is granted to a select group of USC academics each year. “These …

The new lab’s collaborative structure promises to play a key role in the development of groundbreaking advancements in health care. (Photo/Steve Cohn)

New USC/CHLA cGMP Lab opens to accelerate next-generation cell therapy

A new laboratory designed to advance early-stage research into lifesaving, commercially viable therapies was celebrated on the USC Health Sciences Campus Tuesday night. Housed at the USC Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center, the …

Rong Lu Lab (Photo by Chris Shinn)

Why multipotent progenitor cells matter for patients receiving bone marrow transplants

When patients receive bone marrow transplants, they are infused with complex admixtures of many different cell types with the power to regenerate their blood and immune systems. In a new study in …

(Photo courtesy of Megan Rexius-Hall)

Saving lives: Heart attack on a chip

Megan McCain has always enjoyed building and fixing things. She also has long been fascinated by cells in the human body and how they work together to achieve important tasks, like how …

Kuo-Chang (Ted) Tseng from the Crump Lab and Michelle Hung from the Ichida Lab enjoy a beachside brainstorm.

Scientists feel the sand between their toes at the retreat for USC’s stem cell department

A pair of young scientists picked up a piece of driftwood and thoughtfully traced a series of letters in the wet sand of Ventura Beach. The word “microglia”—referring to the immune cells …

USC and CHLA awarded $8 million to expand access to cell and gene therapy clinical trials

The California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM), the state’s stem cell agency, has awarded a five-year, $8 million grant to the Keck School of Medicine of USC and Children’s Hospital Los Angeles (CHLA). …

A cell showing the enzyme BirA*G3, which tags the proteins of the "secretome" (Image courtesy of the McMahon Lab)

This mouse can’t keep a secret about the “secretome”

The “secretome” refers to proteins that are secreted by a cell, a tissue or an organism. In a new study published in Open Biology, USC Stem Cell scientist Andy McMahon and his …

A neutrophil expels chromatin to ensnare and destroy a pathogen (Ryan Lu/Benayoun Lab)

Study of mouse immune cells highlights differences between males and females

A new data set collected by USC Leonard Davis School of Gerontology researchers provides an important new resource for studying differences in immune system function by age and sex. The study, published …

A zebrafish showing the skeleton and jaw (magenta), the eye (green circle on the left), and gill-like pseudobranch and gills (green structures on the right). (Image by Mathi Thiruppathy/Crump Lab)

How did vertebrates first evolve jaws?

Five-hundred million years ago, it was relatively safe to go back in the water. That’s because creatures of the deep had not yet evolved jaws. In a new pair of studies in …

Rong Lu

USC faculty member Rong Lu: Providing insights into stem cell biology in the context of aging and disease

Rong Lu is an associate professor of stem cell biology and regenerative medicine, biomedical engineering, medicine, and gerontology at USC. She joins George Shannon, faculty member and host of the podcast “Lessons …

Clare Yarka (Photo courtesy of Clare Yarka)

Where are they now? Stem cell master’s program alumna Clare Yarka, a Scientist at Instil Bio

In this series of alumni profiles, we highlight graduates of USC’s master of science program in stem cell biology and regenerative medicine. Our accomplished alumni have pursued many different paths—ranging from a …

Detail of brain from Mukund Iyer's first place winning entry (Image by Mukund Iyer)

Communicating science visually: Mukund Iyer, MaryAnne Achieng and Stephanie Chang win the 2022 Winter BioRender contest

For his graphic on immune cell function in the brain, Mukund Iyer took first place in the Winter 2021 BioRender Illustration competition for his schematic of breast cancer cells’ entry through the …

Clockwise from top left, Miao Cui, Yulia Shwartz, Olena Zhulyn, and Kyle McCracken

Stem cell scientists explore the mysteries of regeneration at the Junior Faculty Candidate Seminar and Symposium

How can we regenerate tissues that are damaged, lost or diseased in the human body? This was the central question driving the four scientists who presented their research at the Junior Faculty …

Rong Lu

For USC Stem Cell faculty member Rong Lu, science is in her blood

When Rong Lu joined USC as an assistant professor of stem cell biology and regenerative medicine in 2014, she knew that earning tenure would figuratively require blood, sweat and tears. But after …

Leukemia cells

How alike are the cancer cells from a single patient?

Even within a single patient with cancer, there is a vast diversity of individual tumor cells, which display distinct behaviors related to growth, metastasis, and responses to chemotherapy. To carry out these …