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After surgical rib resection (top), a cartilage and bone bridge form (second from top) and then resolve (third from top) and remodel to regenerate the missing tissue in the gap (bottom). Blue shows cartilage matrix; red shows mineralized matrix. (Images by Stephanie Kuwahara and Max Serowoky/ Mariani Lab)

For large bone injuries, it’s Sonic hedgehog to the rescue

A USC Stem Cell study in NPJ Regenerative Medicine presents intriguing evidence that large bone injuries might trigger a repair strategy in adults that recapitulates elements of skeletal formation in utero. Key …

Kevin Liu

Where are they now? Stem cell master’s program alumnus Kevin Liu, a PhD student studying cancer biology at Stanford University

After years of New York City’s snowy winters, Kevin Liu was ready for sunshine. So Los Angeles’ perfect weather was a motivating factor for pursuing his undergraduate degree in health promotion and …

Nelson Poliran, Jr.

Where are they now? Stem cell master’s program alumnus Nelson Poliran, Jr., a dentist in rural New Mexico

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 …

Natasha Raj-Derouin (Photo courtesy of Natasha Raj-Derouin)

Where are they now? Stem cell master’s program alumna Natasha Raj-Derouin, an MD pursuing a specialty in reproductive endocrinology and infertility

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 …

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 …

Rekha Prakash (Photo courtesy of Rekha Prakash)

Where are they now? Stem cell master’s program alumna Rekha Prakash, a biotechnology teacher at Roosevelt High School

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 …

Haoze (Vincent) Yu and Litao Tao (Photo courtesy of Haoze (Vincent) Yu)

USC Stem Cell alumni Litao Tao and Haoze (Vincent) Yu bring their A game to new positions in academia and industry

Scientists Litao Tao and Haoze (Vincent) Yu were colleagues and team players for many years both inside and outside of Neil Segil’s lab at the Eli and Edythe Broad CIRM Center for …

Altered cells create an electrical “fire” in patients with epilepsy. (BioRender illustration by Aswathy Ammothumkandy/Bonaguidi Lab/USC Stem Cell)

Newborn cells in the epileptic brain provide a potential target for treatment

Over the years, everyone loses a few brain cells. A study led by scientists from USC Stem Cell and the USC Neurorestoration Center presents evidence that adults can replenish at least some …

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 …

USC's stem cell research center

Meet the scholarship winners in USC’s stem cell master’s program

For the second consecutive year, USC’s master’s program in stem cell biology and regenerative medicine has been able to offer scholarships to its talented students. Supported by the generosity of an anonymous …

Spine from a healthy mouse (left) and a mouse with genetically disrupted cartilage progenitor cells (Image by Dawei Geng and Tea Jashashvili)

Arthritis-related gene also regenerates cartilage in joints and growth plates

The IL-6 family of proteins has a bad reputation: it can promote inflammation, arthritis, autoimmune disease and even cancer. However, a new USC-led study published in Communications Biology reveals the importance of …

Confocal microscopy image of an adult zebrafish head with neural crest-derived cells in red. The Crump lab has used single-cell sequencing to understand how these cells build and repair the head skeleton, with implications for understanding human craniofacial birth defects and improving repair of skeletal tissues. (Image by Hung-Jhen Chen/Crump Lab)

A crowning achievement in understanding head development

Cranial neural crest cells, or CNCCs, contribute to many more body parts than their humble name suggests. These remarkable stem cells not only form most of the skull and facial skeleton in …

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 …

Students

California’s stem cell agency awards USC $5 million to train scientists and clinicians

USC has been awarded a $5 million training grant from the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM) to prepare PhD students, postdoctoral researchers, and clinical fellows for careers in stem cell research. …

Bell in the lab

Drug-like molecule points to novel strategies for cancer therapy

A decade ago, genome sequencing revealed a big surprise: about 50 percent of human cancers are linked to mutations in what are known as epigenetic regulators, which control the activity of genes. …

Impromptu McMahon lab meeting

USC Stem Cell: An incubator for medicine of the 21st century

Just over a decade ago, USC was a university with a few scattered stem cell biologists, and a vision for total transformation. The university was committed to designing a unique “incubator” for …

mourning gecko

Aided by stem cells, a lizard regenerates a perfect tail for the first time in 250 million years

Lizards can regrow severed tails, making them the closest relative to humans that can regenerate a lost appendage. But in lieu of the original tail that includes a spinal column and nerves, …

By superimposing images of several of the kidney’s filtering units, known as nephrons, researchers can visualize how little these structures deviate from a stereotypical developmental trajectory.

USC-led study traces the blueprints for how human kidneys form their filtering units

When it comes to building a kidney, only nature possesses the complete set of blueprints. But a USC-led team of scientists has managed to borrow some of nature’s pages through a comprehensive …

The coronal suture contains stem cells (green).

Study of skull birth defect takes it from the top

Contrary to the popular song, the neck bone is actually connected to one of 22 separate head bones that make up the human skull. These plate-like bones intersect at specialized joints called …