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The Interdisciplinary Stem Cell Symposium sparked collaborations. (Photo by Sergio Bianco)

USC researchers converge at the Interdisciplinary Stem Cell Symposium

“The field of stem cell biology is one of our great convergence opportunities,” said USC Provost Michael Quick, addressing an audience of biologists, chemists, physicists, engineers, clinicians and many others. This diverse …

Valter Longo (USC Photo; Illustration by Time)

TIME names Valter Longo one of the 50 Most Influential People in Health Care of 2018

USC Leonard Davis School Professor Valter Longo, director of the USC Longevity Institute and USC Stem Cell principal investigator, has been named one of TIME’s the 50 Most Influential People in Health …

Eun Ji Chung (Photo by Michelle Henry)

Eun Ji Chung awarded NIH New Innovator Award

Eun Ji Chung, Gabilan Assistant Professor of Biomedical Engineering, has received the NIH New Innovator Award. Announced today by the NIH Common Fund’s High-Risk, High-Reward Research program, Chung’s proposal was one of …

Andy McMahon (Photo by Phil Channing)

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 …

Human gametes (Image by Karl-Ludwig Poggemann)

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 …

Nanoparticles move past the glomerular filtration barrier of the kidney to target diseased cells. (Image by Yekaterina (Katya) Kadyshevskaya from the USC Bridge Institute)

This tiny particle might change millions of lives

Remember the scene in the movie Mission: Impossible when Tom Cruise has to sneak into the vault? He had to do all sorts of moves to avoid detection. That’s what it’s like …

Developing human nephron, the filtering unit of the kidney (Image by Nils O. Lindström and Tracy Tran/McMahon Lab)

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 …

Engineered mouse cells (Image courtesy of Leonardo Morsut)

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 …

Kidney (Image by Lori O'Brien/Andy McMahon Lab, illustration by Mira Nameth)

Growing hope: New organs? Not yet, but stem cell research is getting closer

If you lose a limb, it’s lost for life. If you damage a kidney, you won’t grow a new one. And if you have a heart attack, the scars are there to …

Tubular networks developing in a mammalian kidney (Image by Tracy Tran/Andy McMahon Lab)

Growing hope: What are stem cells, and how does USC use them?

Stem cell therapies have accelerated at a promising pace, but how do they work? And what are stem cells?

From left, stem cell researchers Andres Matias Lebensohn, Maxwell Z. Wilson, Seth Shipman, Pulin Li and Yejing Ge (Photo by Cristy Lytal)

At USC’s Junior Faculty Mini-Symposium, stem cell scientists build to understand

When physicist Richard Feynman died in 1988, he left a message scrawled across his chalkboard: “What I cannot create, I do not understand.” Twenty years later, scientists in a very different field …

At an early stage, a nephron forming in the human kidney generates an S-shaped structure. Green cells will generate the kidneys’ filtering device, and blue and red cells specialized regions responsible for distinct nephron activities. (Image courtesy of Stacy Moroz and Tracy Tran/McMahon Lab)

Never accept a kidney donation from a mouse

Researchers are hard at work building mini-kidneys from human cells—using blueprints mostly drawn from lab mice. But mouse kidneys differ from their human counterparts in more than mere scale, as detailed by …

Valter Longo (Photo by John Skalicky)

What to know about fasting, aging, the “longevity diet” and when you should eat

Biochemist Valter Longo has devoted decades to discovering connections between nutrition and successful aging. He runs the Longevity Institute at the USC Leonard Davis School of Gerontology, which aims to extend healthy …

Bérénice Benayoun (Photo courtesy of the USC Davis School of Gerontology)

Bérénice Benayoun studies possibility of rejuvenating genes

Bérénice Benayoun, assistant professor at the USC Leonard Davis School of Gerontology and principal investigator with USC Stem Cell, explores the role of epigenetics—the ways that genes turn “off” or “on”—in the …

Laura Perin (Photo courtesy of CHLA)

New cellular approach found to control progression of chronic kidney disease

Researchers have demonstrated for the first time that extracellular vesicles—tiny protein-filled structures—isolated from amniotic fluid stem cells (AFSCs) can be used to effectively slow the progression of kidney damage in mice with …

Embryonic stem cells (Image/courtesy of Qi-Long Ying)

Subtle cues can dictate the fate of stem cells

If you’ve seen one GSK3 molecule, do not assume that you have seen them all. A new study in Developmental Cell reveals important differences in two similar forms of GSK3, which, in …

Pinchas Cohen (Photo courtesy of the USC Leonard Davis School of Gerontology)

Pinchas Cohen recognized as top influencer in aging field

A newly published list of 2017’s top 50 “Influencers in Aging” includes Pinchas Cohen, dean of the USC Leonard Davis School of Gerontology and principal investigator with USC Stem Cell. The list …

Nanoparticles vs. germs (Photo courtesy of @nanopeek)

Peeking into the science world

For adolescents, social media use is nearly inevitable. According to “Science Daily,” a website that circulates recently developed research news headlines, 76 percent of teenagers in the United States actively use Instagram …

Injury-related damage in a mouse chronic kidney disease model (Image by Jing Liu/McMahon Lab)

The Broad Foundation awards $1 million to early-stage stem cell research projects

The Eli and Edythe Broad Foundation has awarded two $125,000 grants to early-stage scientific investigations at USC’s stem cell research center. The projects are among eight winners of the $1 million Fund …

Zhongwei Li (Photo by Cameron Quon)

USC Stem Cell scientist Zhongwei Li is writing a recipe for a kidney

USC Stem Cell scientist Zhongwei Li could have gone into the family restaurant business. Instead, he’s dedicated his career to experimenting with a very different set of ingredients: kidney stem cells. “The …