Volume 4.32 | Aug 18

Neural Cell News 4.32, August 18, 2010.
In this issue:  Science News |  Current Publications |  Industry News |  Policy News |  Events
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TOP STORY


Scientists Successfully Use Human Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells to Treat Parkinson’s Disease in Rodents  ShareThis  
Researchers have successfully used human induced pluripotent stem cells to treat rodents afflicted with Parkinson’s Disease. [Press release from the Buck Institute for Age Research discussing online prepublication in Stem Cells]


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SCIENCE NEWS


Immune System Genes Linked to Parkinson’s Disease
An international team of researchers conducting a genome-wide association study has discovered that common variants in immune system genes are linked to Parkinson’s disease. [Press release from Medical News Today discussing online prepublication in Nature Genetics]

Single Neurons are Capable of Powerful Computation
Single neurons in the brain are able to distinguish between different sequences of incoming information, according to new research. The finding challenges the widely held view that this kind of processing in the brain requires large numbers of neurons working together. [Press release from the Wellcome Trust discussing online prepublication in Science]

A Lethal Brain Tumor’s Strength May Be A Weakness As Well
An international team of scientists report that they have discovered a new signaling pathway between glioblastoma multiforme cells – one that, if ultimately blocked or disrupted, could significantly slow or reduce tumor growth and malignancy. [Press release from the University of California, San Diego Health System discussing online prepublication in Genes & Development]

Advances in Neurochip Technology will Further Brain Research of Diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s
Researchers have been involved in the development of new technology that monitors brain cell activity at a resolution never achieved before. Developed with the National Research Council Canada, the new silicon chips are also simpler to use, which will help future understanding of how brain cells work under normal conditions and permit drug discoveries for a variety of neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. [University of Calgary Press Release]

Inherited Brain Activity Predicts Childhood Risk for Anxiety
A new study focused on anxiety and brain activity pinpoints the brain regions that are relevant to developing childhood anxiety. [Press release from the University of Wisconsin-Madison discussing online prepublication in Nature]

 
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CURRENT PUBLICATIONS (Ranked by Impact Factor of the Journal)


Neurological Disease Mutations Compromise a C-Terminal Ion Pathway in the Na+/K+-ATPase
Crystal structures of the potassium-bound form of the Na+/K+-ATPase pump revealed an intimate docking of the alpha-subunit carboxy terminus at the transmembrane domain, in past studies. Here researchers show that this element is a key regulator of a previously unrecognized ion pathway. [Nature]

Amygdalar and Hippocampal Substrates of Anxious Temperament Differ in Their Heritability
To characterize the neural circuitry associated with anxious temperament (AT) and the extent to which the function of this circuit is heritable, researchers studied a large sample of rhesus monkeys phenotyped for AT. [Nature]

Common Genetic Variation in the HLA Region is Associated with Late-Onset Sporadic Parkinson’s Disease
The genetic association with HLA supports the involvement of the immune system in Parkinson’s disease and offers new targets for drug development. [Nat Genet]

Dendritic Discrimination of Temporal Input Sequences in Cortical Neurons
The detection and discrimination of temporal sequences is fundamental to brain function and underlies perception, cognition, and motor output. Applying patterned two-photon glutamate uncaging, researchers found that single dendrites of cortical pyramidal neurons exhibit sensitivity to the sequence of synaptic activation. [Science]

Neurons Derived from Transplanted Neural Stem Cells Restore Disrupted Neuronal Circuitry in a Mouse Model of Spinal Cord Injury
Here, using a mouse model of spinal cord injury, researchers have shown that transplantation of neural stem cells together with administration of valproic acid, a known antiepileptic and histone deacetylase inhibitor, dramatically enhanced the restoration of hind limb function. [J Clin Invest]

Tumor Heterogeneity is an Active Process Maintained by a Mutant EGFR-Induced Cytokine Circuit in Glioblastoma
The findings support the view that a minor tumor cell population can potently drive accelerated growth of the entire tumor mass, and thereby actively maintain tumor cell heterogeneity within a tumor mass. [Gene Dev]

Neural Induction Intermediates Exhibit Distinct Roles of Fgf Signaling
Researchers conclude that Fgf signaling plays different roles during the differentiation of embryonic stem cells, with an initial requirement in epiblast formation and a subsequent role in self-renewal. Fgf2 and Fgf8 thus stimulate self-renewal in different cell types. [Stem Cells]

Efficient Generation of Functional Dopaminergic Neurons from Human Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells Under Defined Conditions
Induced pluripotent stem cell-derived dopaminergic neurons were functional as they survived and improved behavioral deficits in 6-hydroxydopamine-leasioned rats after transplantation. [Stem Cells]

Monoamine Oxidases Regulate Telencephalic Neural Progenitors in Late Embryonic and Early Postnatal Development
Monoamine neurotransmitters play major roles in regulating a range of brain functions in adults and increasing evidence suggests roles for monoamines in brain development. Here researchers show that mice lacking the monoamine metabolic enzymes MAO A and MAO B (MAO AB-deficient mice) exhibit diminished proliferation of neural stem cells in the developing telencephalon beginning in late gestation [embryonic day (E) 17.5], a deficit that persists in neonatal and adult mice. [J Neurosci]

Pregnancy Associated Progenitor Cells (PAPC) Differentiate and Mature into Neurons in the Maternal Brain
Using a murine model of fetomaternal microchimerism, researchers show that PAPCs integrated and persisted in several areas of the maternal brain for up to 7 months postpartum. [Stem Cell Dev]




INDUSTRY NEWS


Lilly Halts Development of Semagacestat for Alzheimer’s Disease Based on Preliminary Results of Phase III Clinical Trials
Eli Lilly and Company will halt development of semagacestat, a gamma secretase inhibitor being studied as a potential treatment for Alzheimer’s disease, because preliminary results from two ongoing long-term Phase III studies showed it did not slow disease progression and was associated with worsening of clinical measures of cognition and the ability to perform activities of daily living. [Eli Lilly and Company Press Release]

Data-Sharing Breeds Alzheimer’s Progress
A 2003 venture to bring together the NIH, FDA, industry, universities and nonprofits is paying dividends for Alzheimer’s biomarker research. There have been advancements in using imaging for early disease detection, and about 100 clinical studies are in progress for Alzheimer’s. [FierceBiotech]

Neurologix Reports Second Quarter 2010 Financial Results
Neurologix, Inc., a biotechnology company developing innovative gene therapies for the brain and central nervous system, reported its financial results for the three and six months ended June 30, 2010. [Neurologix, Inc. Press Release]

Neuralstem Receives Confirmation of Patent Claims From United States Patent and Trademark Office
Neuralstem, Inc. announced that it received notification that the United States Patent and Trademark Office has upheld the patentability, without amendment, of all claims in U.S. Patent No. 5,753,506 and intends to issue a reexamination certificate in due course. [Neuralstem, Inc. Press Release]

Neuralstem Reports Second Quarter Financial Results and Provides Business & Clinical Update
Neuralstem, Inc. reported its financial results for the three months and six months periods ended June 30, 2010 and provided a business and clinical update. [Neuralstem, Inc. Press Release]

Xenon Pharmaceuticals Initiates a Phase 2 Clinical Trial in Post Herpetic Neuralgia (PHN) for Topical XEN402
Xenon Pharmaceuticals Inc. announced that it has initiated a phase 2 clinical trial evaluating its novel topical XEN402 therapy for the treatment of PHN. [Xenon Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Press Release]
 




POLICY NEWS


International Society for Cellular Therapy (ISCT) Joins Forces with Roche and Genzyme to Launch Cell Therapy Industry Partnership
Many companies in the cell therapy regenerative medicine market including Roche, Genzyme, Athersys, Miltenyi Biotec, Hospira, Lonza and Life Technologies will join ISCT to launch a series of new initiatives that will create greater strategic alignment within the industry and drive late stage clinical development. [International Society for Cellular Therapy Press Release]


FDA: Aseptic Meningitis Risk with Use of Seizure Drug Lamictal
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has warned that the drug Lamictal (lamotrigine), approved to treat seizures and bipolar disorder, can cause aseptic meningitis, an inflammation of the protective membranes (meninges) that cover the brain and spinal cord not caused by bacterial infection. [Food and Drug Administration, United States]

Neurobiology of Migraine (R01) (PA-10-258) [National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, United States]

Neurobiology of Migraine (R21) (PA-10-259) [National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, United States]

Chronic, Non-Communicable Diseases and Disorders Across the Lifespan: Fogarty International Research Training Award (NCD-LIFESPAN) (D43) (PAR-10-257) [National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, United States]

National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke; Notice of Closed Meetings [National Institutes of Health, United States]

Proposed Collection; Comment Request; NIH NCI Central Institutional Review Board (CIRB) Initiative (NCI) (FR Doc. 2010-20167) [National Institutes of Health, United States]


Center for Scientific Review, Notice of Closed Meetings (FR Doc. 2010-19938) [National Institutes of Health, United States]


Center for Scientific Review, Notice of Closed Meetings (FR Doc. 2010- 20044) [National Institutes of Health, United States]


Office of the Director, National Institutes of Health; Notice of Meeting (FR Doc. 2010-20021) [National Institutes of Health, United States]


National Human Genome Research Institute; Notice of Closed Meeting (FR Doc. 2010-19939) [National Institutes of Health, United States]


Basic Research on Self-Regulation (R21) (RFA-AG-11-010) [National Institutes of Health, United States]


National Center for Research Resources; Notice of Meeting (FR Doc. 2010-20014) [National Institutes of Health, United States]




EVENTS (Listed by Date)


Select Biosciences 3rd Annual Stem Cells Europe Conference
August 24-25, 2010
Edinburgh, Scotland

Select Biosciences Inaugural Cellular Therapy Summit
August 24-25, 2010
Edinburgh, Scotland

BIOSPINE 3 – 3rd World Congress on Biotechnologies for Spinal Surgery
September 1-4, 2010
Amsterdam, The Netherlands

EMBO/EMBL Structures and Function of Neural Circuits
September 5-8, 2010
Heidelberg, Germany

International Society for Cellular Therapy (ISCT)-Europe 2nd Regional Meeting
September 11-14, 2010
Belgirate, Italy

Joint Metastasis Research Society – American Association of Cancer Research Conference on Metastasis and the Tumor Microenvironment
September 12-15, 2010
Philadelphia, United States

Stem Cells USA & Regenerative Medicine Congress 2010
September 13-15, 2010
Philadelphia, United States

International Society for Cell and Gene Therapy of Cancer (ISCGT) Congress
September 27-29, 2010
Doha, Qatar

4th American Association of Cancer Research International Conference on Molecular Diagnostics in Cancer Therapeutic Development
September 27-30, 2010
Denver, United States

6th International Symposium on Neuroprotection and Neurorepair
October 1-4, 2010
Rostock, Germany

2010 World Stem Cell Summit
October 4-6, 2010
Detroit, United States

18th Annual BioPartnering Europe
October 10-12, 2010
London, United Kingdom

Institute for Genomic Medicine Inaugural Symposium
October 11-12, 2010
San Diego, United States

5th Annual Translational Stem Cell Research Conference
October 12-13, 2010
New York City, United States

Translational Cancer Research for Basic Scientists
October 17-22, 2010
Boston, United States

Fraunhofer Life Science Symposium 2010
October 29-30, 2010
Leipzig, Germany

Stem Cell Society Singapore Symposium 2010: Translating Science to Therapy
November 2-3, 2010
Singapore City, Singapore

40th Annual Meeting of the Society for Neuroscience 2010
November 13-17, 2010
San Diego, United States

Stem Cell Network 10th Annual Scientific Meeting
November 22-24, 2010
Calgary, Canada

The American Society for Cell Biology 50th Annual Meeting
December 11-15, 2010
Philadelphia, United States

Adult Neurogenesis
January 9-14, 2011
Taos, New Mexico

Select Biosciences 5th Annual Stem Cells World Congress
January 24-25, 2011
San Diego, United States

Phacilitate 7th Annual Cell & Gene Therapy Forum 2011
January 24-26, 2011
Washington, DC, United States

Trends in Central Nervous System Malignancies
March 25-26, 2011
Bucharest, Romania

Wiring the Brain: Making Connections
April 12-15, 2011
Powerscourt, Ireland

Visit our events page to stay up to date with the latest events in the cell, gene and immunotherapy community.



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