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Three USC researchers win $4.3 million in awards from California’s stem cell agency

Three scientists from Keck Medicine of USC have won grants exceeding $4.3 million from the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM) for research that includes creating a temporary liver for patients, finding novel ways to treat immune disorders and blood diseases, and developing new animal models for heart failure, diabetes and neurodegenerative diseases. The grants, …

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, the replacement structure is an imperfect cartilage tube. Now, for the first time, a USC-led study in Nature Communications describes how stem cells …

Thomas Lozito

The childhood moments that launched their careers as explorers

Innocent curiosity can turn discovery into life’s purpose. A toddler locks eyes with a turtle for the first time; a mischievous teen concocts stink bombs in the garage. However their careers develop, future researchers often get their start as inquisitive kids. An unexpected brush with the weird, wild, worrying or wonderful just might end up …

lizard

Lizards’ immune systems are not only for fighting germs, but also for regrowing severed tails

The human immune system has been getting a bad rap lately. However, the lizard immune system is finally receiving its due credit for enabling lizards to regrow severed tails. In a recent study in the Journal of Immunology and Regenerative Medicine, researchers from USC and the University of Pittsburgh describe how immune cells, called phagocytes, …

USC Stem Cell scientist Thomas Lozito looks to lizards in hopes of healing humans

Some students sell blood plasma to make extra cash during graduate school. Thomas Lozito, a new assistant professor of orthopaedic surgery and stem cell biology and regenerative medicine at USC, sold poison dart frogs to ward off the impecunity of the PhD years. “When I was in high school and all the way up to …

Thomas Lozito, PhD

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