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Bone marrow transplant: What it is, uses, risks, and recovery – Medical News Today

By daniellenierenberg

Bone marrow is soft, spongy tissue within some bones, including those in the hips and thighs. People with certain blood-related conditions benefit from a transplant that replaces damaged cells with healthy cells, possibly from a donor.

Bone marrow transplants can be lifesaving for people with conditions such as lymphoma or leukemia, or when intensive cancer treatment has damaged blood cells.

This type of transplant can be an intensive procedure, and recovery can take a long time.

Here, we provide an overview of bone marrow transplants, including their uses, risks, and recovery.

Bone marrow contains stem cells. In healthy people, stem cells in bone marrow help create:

If a medical condition such as one that damages the blood or immune system prevents the body from creating healthy blood cells, a person may need a bone marrow transplant.

A person with any of the following conditions may be a candidate for a bone marrow transplant:

There are three types of bone marrow transplant, based on where the healthy bone marrow cells come from.

In many cases, the donor is a close family member, such as a sibling or parent. The medical name for this is an allogenic transplant.

Transplants are more likely to be effective if the donated stem cells have a similar genetic makeup to the person's own stem cells.

If a close family member is not available, the doctor will search a registry of donors to find the closest match. While an exact match is best, advances in transplant procedures are making it possible to use donors who are not an exact match.

In a procedure called an autologous transplant, the doctor will take healthy blood stem cells from the person being treated and replace these cells later, after removing any damaged cells in the sample.

In an umbilical cord transplant, also called a cord transplant, doctors use immature stem cells from the umbilical cord following a baby's birth. Unlike cells from an adult donor, the cells from an umbilical cord do not need to be as close a genetic match.

Before a bone marrow transplant, the doctor will run tests to determine the best type of procedure. They will then locate an appropriate donor, if necessary.

If they can use the person's own cells, they will collect the cells in advance and store them safely in a freezer until the transplant.

The person will then undergo other treatment, which may involve chemotherapy, radiation, or a combination of the two.

These procedures typically destroy bone marrow cells as well as cancer cells. Chemotherapy and radiation also suppress the immune system, helping to prevent it from rejecting a bone marrow transplant.

While preparing for the transplant, the person may need to stay in the hospital for 12 weeks. During this time, a healthcare professional will insert a small tube into one of the person's larger veins.

Through the tube, the person will receive medication that destroys any abnormal stem cells and weakens the immune system to prevent it from rejecting the healthy transplanted cells.

Before entering the hospital, it is a good idea to arrange:

A bone marrow transplant is not surgery. It is similar to a blood transfusion.

If a donor is involved, they will provide the stem cells well in advance of the procedure. If the transplant involves the person's own cells, the healthcare facility will keep the cells in storage.

The transplant typically takes place in several sessions over several days. Staggering the introduction of cells in this way gives them the best chance of integrating with the body.

The healthcare team may also use the tube to introduce liquids such as blood, nutrients, and medications to help fight infection or encourage the growth of bone marrow. The combination depends on the body's response to treatment.

The procedure will temporarily compromise the person's immune system, making them very susceptible to infection. Most hospitals have a dedicated, isolated space for people undergoing bone marrow transplants to help reduce their risk of infection.

After the last session, the doctor will continue to check the blood each day to determine how well the transplant has worked. They will test whether new cells are beginning to grow in bone marrow.

If a person's white blood cell count starts to rise, it indicates that the body is starting to create its own blood, indicating that the transplant has been successful.

The amount of time that it takes for the body to recover depends on:

Many other factors can affect recovery, including:

Some people are able to leave the hospital soon after the transplant, while others need to stay for several weeks or months.

The medical team will continue to monitor the person's recovery for up to 1 year. Some people find that effects of the transplant remain for life.

A bone marrow transplant is a major medical procedure. There is a high risk of complications during and after it.

The likelihood of developing complications depends on various factors, including:

Below are some of the more common complications that people who receive bone marrow transplants experience:

Some people die as a result of complications from bone marrow transplants.

A person who receives a bone marrow transplant may also experience reactions that can follow any medical procedure, including:

The body's response to a bone marrow transplant varies greatly from person to person. Factors such as age, overall health, and the reason for the transplant can all affect a person's long term outlook.

If a person receives a bone marrow transplant to treat cancer, their outlook depends, in part, on how far the cancer has spread. Cancer that has spread far from its origin, for example, responds less well to treatment.

According to the National Marrow Donor Program, the 1-year survival rate among people who have received transplants from unrelated donors increased from 42% to 60% over about the past 5 years.

A bone marrow transplant is a major medical procedure that requires preparation. This involves determining the best type of transplant, finding a donor, if necessary, and preparing for a lengthy hospital stay.

The time that it takes for the body to recover from a transplant varies, depending on factors such as a person's age and overall health and the reason for the transplant.

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Cocker spaniel with cancer to receive stem cells from mother living 4,000 miles away – Fox News

By daniellenierenberg

A 6-year-old cocker spaniel in California that was recently diagnosed with cancer is slated to receive stem cells from her mother living 4,000 miles away in the United Kingdom.

Coco the cocker spaniel gave birth to a litter of puppies six years ago. One of those puppies, Millie, was adopted by Serena and Andrew Lodge, who now live in San Francisco. They may live across the world from each other, but the mother and daughter will soon be reunited for the rare treatment, reported South West News Service, or SWNS, a British news agency.

CHEAPER MEDICATION FOR DOGS WITH SEPARATION ANXIETY NOW APPROVED, FDA SAYS

Coco, left, and daughter, Millie. (SWNS)

The transplant will occur at the North Carolina State Veterinary Hospital in Raleigh. The facility isreportedly one of only a few animal hospitals in the world to offer the treatment, which involves taking healthy stem cells from Cocos bone marrow and injecting them intoMillies.

"Serena and Andrew started chemo on Millie three months ago but they've been told the only chance they'll have of curing her is if they find a positive donor so she can have a transplant, said Cocos owner, Robert Alcock, 52. He arrived with Coco in North Carolina on Wednesday.

Millie while in an animal hospital. (SWNS)

"They contacted us, and we sent some blood samples for testing, along with samples from one of Coco's other pups, he added. They both came back positive but because Coco is Millie's mother the vet said she would be a better match."

"Coco will go into hospital on Sunday for the procedure and then the cells will be donated on Monday, he continued, noting the Lodges have paid for everything.

Robert Alcock and his cocker spaniel, Coco. (SWNS)

BLACK LAB GIVES BIRTH TO 13 PUPPIES, SHOCKS OWNERS: 'THEY WERE JUST FLYING OUT'

Coco is expected to make a full recovery following the procedure. However, there is only a 50 percent chance Millie will be cured even if the treatment is successful, according to SWNS.

Stem cell therapy for pets is costly, typically setting an owner back between $2,000 and $3,000, according to Pet WebMD.

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We live in an age of miracles. And my nephew needs one – The Times

By daniellenierenberg

November 15 2019, 12:01am,The Times

Al Murray

Its unfashionable to say so these days but we live in an age of miracles. Or at least potential miracles. We all have the opportunity to save someones life and you dont have rush into a burning building or a fast flowing river to do it.

My nephew Finley is six. He is, I think, like a lot of six-year-old boys, he likes trains and tanks and planes, hes into playing football and swimming, and hes almost completely beguiled by video games. So far so normal. He is, however, unlucky enough to be one of the 12 children each year who suffer from juvenile myelomonocytic leukaemia (JMML).

JMML is a rare blood cancer and as difficult to defeat as it is rare. Its sort of

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Cocker Spaniel Coco goes to US to try and save her puppy’s life – Lancaster and Morecambe Citizen

By daniellenierenberg

ONE man and his dog are travelling to North Carolina this week, to provide a puppy with a pioneering stem cell transplant that could save her life.

Robert Alcock and his cocker spaniel, Coco, are making the journey so Coco, 7, can donate her stem cells to one of her own puppies, Millie, 6, who has cancer.

The experimental procedure is not yet available in the UK and can only be performed at one US hospital, the NC State Veterinary Hospital.

It involves using stem cells from the bone marrow of one dog and injecting them into the other.

Even if the operation is a success, there is only a 50 percent chance that Millie will be cured.

Millie was taken to the USA when her owners, Serena and Andrew Lodge, emigrated for work. After moving across the pond, Millie contracted cancer.

Millie the dog last week and (inset) before she became ill

Mr Alcock, who lives in Darwen, said the only way to help her is the transplant.

The 52-year-old catering manager said: Serena and Andrew started chemo on Millie three months ago but theyve been told the only chance theyll have of curing her is if they find a positive donor so she can have a transplant.

They contacted us, and we sent some blood samples for testing, along with samples from one of Cocos other pups.

They both came back positive but because Coco is Millies mother the vet said she would be a better match.

Mr and Mrs Lodge then asked Mr Alcock if he would fly to the USA with Coco so she could help save Millies life.

On Wednesday, Mr Alcock made the journey to North Carolina, to the only animal hospital in the States that can perform that kind of transplant on dogs.

Mr Alcock added: The Lodges have paid for everything, and I didnt like to ask how much the operation is costing but I think it will be in the thousands.

We will be in America for about a week.

Coco will go into hospital on Sunday for the procedure and then the cells will be donated on Monday.

Coco is expected to make a full recovery from the operation, but there is only a 50 per cent chance that Millie could be cured once the transplant has been completed.

Robert and Coco

Mr Alcock added: If it was a human then the chances of survival would be really good.

But this is a pioneering procedure, they havent done very many of these transplants before, so well have to wait and see what happens.

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BrainStorm Cell Therapeutics Announces Research Grant Award From the National Multiple Sclerosis Society – Yahoo Finance

By daniellenierenberg

NEW YORK, Nov. 14, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- BrainStorm Cell Therapeutics, Inc. (NASDAQ:BCLI), a leading developer of adult stem cell therapies for neurodegenerative diseases, announced today that the Company has received a $495,330 grant from the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, through its Fast Forward program, to advance BrainStorms Phase 2 open-label, multicenter clinical trial of repeated intrathecal administration of NurOwn (autologous MSC-NTF cells) in participants with progressive Multiple Sclerosis (NCT03799718).

Chaim Lebovits, President and CEO of BrainStorm stated, We are very pleased to receive this generous grant from the National MS Society. Currently, we are conducting our Phase 2 study in three leading US medical centers: The Keck School of Medicine of USC, The Stanford School of Medicine, and Cleveland Clinic. This research funding will help advance our investigational therapy NurOwn as a potential unmet need for patients with progressive MS. MS continues to devastate the lives of patients and their families and we thank the National MS Society for helping us advance our innovative research program.

Currently, progressive MS treatment options are limited and NurOwn is a promising new autologous cellular treatment modality that has the potential to directly address MS disease pathways, said Ralph Kern MD MHSc, COO and CMO of BrainStorm. He added, This funding from the National MS Society will help us explore key neuroinflammation and neural repair biomarkers in progressive MS to confirm NurOwns unique mechanism of action and guide the design of future clinical trials to address this important unmet patient need.

Leveraging resources in this Phase 2 clinical study of a cell-based therapy for progressive MS exemplifies our work to accelerate research to improve clinical care for people living with MS. said Mark Allegretta, PhD, Vice President of Research at the National MS Society. Were pleased to work with BrainStorm to test a broad panel of biomarkers of neuroinflammation and repair as correlates of the effect of treatment with NurOwn.

About Multiple SclerosisMultiple sclerosis is an unpredictable, often disabling disease of the central nervous system. There is currently no cure for MS. Symptoms vary from person to person and range from numbness and tingling, to mobility challenges, blindness and paralysis. An estimated 1 million people live with MS in the United States. Most people are diagnosed between the ages of 20 and 50 and it affects women three times more than men.

About The National Multiple Sclerosis Society:The National MS Society, founded in 1946, funds cutting-edge research, drives change through advocacy, and provides programs and services to help people affected by MS live their best lives. Connect to learn more and get involved: nationalMSsociety.org, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube or 1-800-344-4867.

About NurOwnNurOwn (autologous MSC-NTF) cells represent a promising investigational therapeutic approach to targeting disease pathways important in neurodegenerative disorders. MSC-NTF cells are produced from autologous, bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) that have been expanded and differentiated ex vivo. MSCs are converted into MSC-NTF cells by growing them under patented conditions that induce the cells to secrete high levels of neurotrophic factors. Autologous MSC-NTF cells can effectively deliver multiple NTFs and immunomodulatory cytokines directly to the site of damage to elicit a desired biological effect and ultimately slow or stabilize disease progression. BrainStorm has fully enrolled a Phase 3 pivotal trial of autologous MSC-NTF cells for the treatment of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). BrainStorm also recently received U.S. FDA acceptance to initiate a Phase 2 open-label multicenter trial in progressive MS and enrollment began in March 2019.

About BrainStorm Cell Therapeutics Inc.BrainStorm Cell Therapeutics Inc. is a leading developer of innovative autologous adult stem cell therapeutics for debilitating neurodegenerative diseases. The Company holds the rights to clinical development and commercialization of the NurOwn technology platform used to produce autologous MSC-NTF cells through an exclusive, worldwide licensing agreement. Autologous MSC-NTF cells have received Orphan Drug status designation from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (U.S. FDA) and the European Medicines Agency (EMA) in ALS. BrainStorm has fully enrolled a Phase 3 pivotal trial in ALS (NCT03280056), investigating repeat-administration of autologous MSC-NTF cells at six U.S. sites supported by a grant from the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM CLIN2-0989). The pivotal study is intended to support a filing for U.S. FDA approval of autologous MSC-NTF cells in ALS. BrainStorm also recently received U.S. FDA clearance to initiate a Phase 2 open-label multicenter trial in progressive Multiple Sclerosis. The Phase 2 study of autologous MSC-NTF cells in patients with progressive MS (NCT03799718) started enrollment in March 2019. For more information, visit the company's website at http://www.brainstorm-cell.com.

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Safe-Harbor Statement

Statements in this announcement other than historical data and information, including statements regarding future clinical trial enrollment and data, constitute "forward-looking statements" and involve risks and uncertainties that could causeBrainStorm Cell Therapeutics Inc.'sactual results to differ materially from those stated or implied by such forward-looking statements. Terms and phrases such as "may", "should", "would", "could", "will", "expect", "likely", "believe", "plan", "estimate", "predict", "potential", and similar terms and phrases are intended to identify these forward-looking statements. The potential risks and uncertainties include, without limitation, BrainStorms need to raise additional capital, BrainStorms ability to continue as a going concern, regulatory approval of BrainStorms NurOwn treatment candidate, the success of BrainStorms product development programs and research, regulatory and personnel issues, development of a global market for our services, the ability to secure and maintain research institutions to conduct our clinical trials, the ability to generate significant revenue, the ability of BrainStorms NurOwn treatment candidate to achieve broad acceptance as a treatment option for ALS or other neurodegenerative diseases, BrainStorms ability to manufacture and commercialize the NurOwn treatment candidate, obtaining patents that provide meaningful protection, competition and market developments, BrainStorms ability to protect our intellectual property from infringement by third parties, heath reform legislation, demand for our services, currency exchange rates and product liability claims and litigation,; and other factors detailed in BrainStorm's annual report on Form 10-K and quarterly reports on Form 10-Q available athttp://www.sec.gov. These factors should be considered carefully, and readers should not place undue reliance on BrainStorm's forward-looking statements. The forward-looking statements contained in this press release are based on the beliefs, expectations and opinions of management as of the date of this press release. We do not assume any obligation to update forward-looking statements to reflect actual results or assumptions if circumstances or management's beliefs, expectations or opinions should change, unless otherwise required by law. Although we believe that the expectations reflected in the forward-looking statements are reasonable, we cannot guarantee future results, levels of activity, performance or achievements.

CONTACTS

Corporate:Uri YablonkaChief Business OfficerBrainStorm Cell Therapeutics Inc.Phone: 646-666-3188uri@brainstorm-cell.com

Media:Sean LeousWestwicke/ICR PRPhone: +1.646.677.1839sean.leous@icrinc.com

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The Heart of the Matter: Leveraging Advances in Cardiac Biology to Innovate Gene-Based Therapies for Heart Failure – Physician’s Weekly

By daniellenierenberg

Heart failure (HF) is the most frequent cardiovascular diagnosis and exacts significant health and financial costs around the globe. It is estimated that at least 26 million people worldwide are living with HF, including nearly 6 million in the United States.1, 2 One in nine U.S. deaths in 2009 included heart failure as a contributing cause and about 50 percent of people in the U.S. with HF die within five years of diagnosis.2 The annual cost of HF-related healthcare services, medication and missed days of work is estimated at $40 billion in the United States and $108 billion globally.3, 4 Quality of life in HF patients is frequently worse than many other chronic diseases and comorbidities are common.5-7 The challenges of HF are expected to grow, as it is estimated that more than 8 million people in the United States alone will have HF by 2030.2 Current therapies improve quality of life in the short-term and have improved long-term survival but a significant number of patients have Class 3 HF despite optimal medical and device therapy. These patients have limited treatment options beyond heart transplant and left ventricular assist devices (LVAD). New therapeutic approaches that address the underlying causes of HF are needed to improve patient outcomes.

Heart failure is a complex disease process and multiple pathways contribute to its development and progression. Myocardial ischemia is frequently an issue in both ischemic and non-ischemic cardiomyopathy as well as HF with preserved and/or reduced ejection fraction. Myocardial ischemia results in insufficient oxygen and nutrients and leads to hypoxia, cardiomyocyte and fibrosis, which all contribute to the progression of heart failure. More effective angiogenesis may prevent this progression. Cell homing also plays a critical role, as injured cardiac tissue secretes factors that lead to the recruitment, proliferation, migration and differentiation of progenitor cells that can help repair tissue damage. Stromal cell-derived factor (SDF)-1 has been shown to play an important role in cardiac repair by mediating cell homing.10 Mitochondrial energy generation is also impaired in HF, leading to decreased contractility and adverse changes to cardiac architecture.11 Scar tissue formed in response to cardiomyocyte injury or death can compromise the hearts mechanical strength or electrical signaling results in myocardial infarction. Inflammatory responses to cardiac tissue damage can promote inappropriate and chronic inflammation and the expression of pro-inflammatory molecules that lead to pathologic changes to cardiac architecture.12, 13

These pathways offer a variety of potential new targets for therapeutic intervention to prevent the development and progression of HF. This opens the door to the development of novel therapies that address the underlying molecular and cellular causes of disease rather than treating HF symptoms alone.

After decades of development, gene-based therapies are now validated therapeutic modalities for the treatment of inherited retinal disorders and cancer and are undergoing clinical evaluation in a variety of inherited, acute and chronic diseases. Nearly two dozen single gene-based therapies for HF have been evaluated in clinical trials.14 Genes evaluated as monogenic gene therapy for HF in clinical trials include vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and fibroblast growth factor type 4 (FGF4) to promote angiogenesis; adenylyl cyclase type 6 (AC6) and sarco/endoplasmic reticulum Ca2+-ATPase type 2 (SERCA2) to improve cardiac calcium homeostasis, which plays a critical role in the contraction and relaxation of heart muscle; and stromal cell-derived factor-1 (SDF-1) to improve cell homing and promote cardiac tissue repair. Late-stage trials of single gene therapies have yielded conflicting results, raising the question as to whether positively impacting a single pathway can be sufficient to overcome detrimental activity of other pathways that contribute to the development and progression of HF. Other potential limitations to HF therapies evaluated in clinical trials to date include the method of delivery, dose and the potency of vectors and gene products.

Given the multiple molecular and cellular pathways active in HF, a multi-gene approach to HF gene therapy may be needed. Simultaneously delivering multiple genes that target diverse HF-related pathways has the potential to improve cardiac biology and function. A triple gene therapy approach (INXN-4001, Triple-Gene LLC, a majority-owned subsidiary of Intrexon Corporation) is currently in clinical development, with each of the genes targeting a specific HF-related pathway. The investigational drug candidate INXN4001 vector expresses: the S100A1 gene product, which regulates calcium-controlled networks and modulates contractility, excitability, maintenance of cellular metabolism and survival; SDF-1a which recruits stem cells, inhibits apoptosis and supports new blood vessel formation; and VEGF-165 which initiates new vessel formation, endothelial cell migration/activation, stem cell recruitment and tissue regeneration. The hypothesis is that the simultaneous delivery of multiple genes in a single vector would more effectively improve multiple aspects of cardiac function compared with single gene therapy. It is delivered by retrograde coronary sinus infusion of a triple effector plasmid designed with a self-cleaving linker to constitutively express human S100A1, SDF-1a and VEGF 165. This route is designed to allow for delivery of a dose to the ventricle which may help achieve improved therapeutic effect.

Several preclinical studies have set the foundation on which to advance a triple gene therapy for HF into the clinic.15-17 Using in vitro studies, transfecting cells derived from patients with dilated cardiomyopathy with a triple gene combination demonstrated improvement in contraction rate and duration, to the levels demonstrated by the control cells and did not result in increased cell death compared to controls.15 Studies in an Adriamycin-induced cardiomyopathy rodent model demonstrated triple gene therapy increased fractional shortening and myocardial wall thickness compared to controls.16 In addition, retrograde coronary sinus infusion of INXN-4001 in a porcine model of ischemic HF resulted in a cardiac-specific biodistribution profile.17

A Phase 1 clinical study has been initiated to evaluate the safety of a single dose of triple gene therapy in stable patients implanted with a LVAD for mechanical support of end-stage HF. An independent Data and Safety Monitoring Board agreed to proceeding to the second cohort following review of the data from the first cohort in the multi-site study.18 The study is ongoing and final results will help to inform our understanding of the potential that multi-gene therapy may play in the treatment of HF.

The recent FDA approvals of gene therapies for an inherited retinal disease and cancer are evidence that gene therapy is a valid therapeutic strategy. Realizing the potential of gene therapy in HF will require appropriately designed clinical trials, but several interesting approaches currently in development may prove to be effective. The results of the initial investigational drug INXN-4001 Phase 1 trial should provide insight into the safety of combining S100A1, SDF-1a and VEGF-165. Evaluation of additional multi-gene combinations will also be important for understanding which targeted pathways yield the greatest effects with respect to relevant clinical endpoints. Continued refinement and optimization of vector design and delivery methods will also be important for advancing further HF gene therapies from bench to bedside.

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Human Heart Cells Transform in Space; Return to Normal on Earth: Study – The Weather Channel

By daniellenierenberg

Representational image

Heart cells are altered in space, but return to normal within 10 days on Earth, say researchers who examined cell-level cardiac function and gene expression in human heart cells cultured aboard the International Space Station (ISS) for 5.5 weeks.

Exposure to microgravity altered the expression of thousands of genes, but largely normal patterns of gene expression reappeared within 10 days after returning to Earth, according to the study published in the journal Stem Cell Reports.

"We're surprised about how quickly human heart muscle cells are able to adapt to the environment in which they are placed, including microgravity," said senior study author Joseph C. Wu from Stanford University.

These studies may not only provide insight into cellular mechanisms that could benefit astronaut health during long-duration spaceflight, but also potentially lay the foundation for new insights into improving heart health on Earth.

Past studies have shown that spaceflight induces physiological changes in cardiac function, including reduced heart rate, lowered arterial pressure, and increased cardiac output.

But to date, most cardiovascular microgravity physiology studies have been conducted either in non-human models or at tissue, organ, or systemic levels.

Relatively little is known about the role of microgravity in influencing human cardiac function at the cellular level.

To address this question, the research team studied human induced pluripotent stem cell-derived cardiomyocytes (hiPSC-CMs). They generated hiPSC lines from three individuals by reprogramming blood cells, and then differentiated them into heart cells.

Beating heart cells were then sent to the ISS aboard a SpaceX spacecraft as part of a commercial resupply service mission. Simultaneously, ground control heart cells were cultured on Earth for comparison purposes.

Upon return to Earth, space-flown heart cells showed normal structure and morphology. However, they did adapt by modifying their beating pattern and calcium recycling patterns.

In addition, the researchers performed RNA sequencing of heart cells harvested at 4.5 weeks aboard the ISS, and 10 days after returning to Earth.

These results showed that 2,635 genes were differentially expressed among flight, post-flight, and ground control samples.

Most notably, gene pathways related to mitochondrial function were expressed more in space-flown heart cells.

A comparison of the samples revealed that heart cells adopt a unique gene expression pattern during spaceflight, which reverts to one that is similar to ground-side controls upon return to normal gravity, the study noted.

According to Wu, limitations of the study include its short duration and the use of 2D cell culture.

In future studies, the researchers plan to examine the effects of spaceflight and microgravity using more physiologically relevant hiPSC-derived 3D heart tissues with various cell types, including blood vessel cells.

"We also plan to test different treatments on the human heart cells to determine if we can prevent some of the changes the heart cells undergo during spaceflight," Wu said.

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Youngstown State, IBM to offer high-tech training in the Mahoning Valley – Crain’s Cleveland Business

By daniellenierenberg

Researchers at Case Western Reserve University have won a number of grants this fall. Here's a look at some of the recently announced ones and the work those grants will be funding, all with links to full stories on the university's The Daily site.

1. First up, a new five-year, $2.2 million grant from Lubrizol Corp. will support STEM scholarships, internships, co-ops and joint research, a post said. The funding will also support programs focused on student research and women in science and engineering.

The joint research between CWRU and Lubrizol will focus on energy, human health, materials and sustainability.

"We are always interested in finding ways that the Case Western Reserve community can engage more fully with the industrial sector," university provost Ben Vinson III said in the post. "It is, along with our community and government partners, critical to the development of our students, our research endeavors and our innovation pathway. Working with the university's office of corporate relations, we are developing new strategies to deepen our industry collaborations that will include investment from our corporate partners to support programmatic areas across campus."

2. A five-year, $1.25 million grant will help the university better train developmental psychologists and speech language pathologists. The grant is from the U.S. Department of Education.

"Many children need extra help in their educational journey. Teachers cannot do it alone," Elizabeth Short, a professor in the Department of Psychological Sciences, said in a post. "Training professionals to provide supports is of paramount importance they are on the frontlines, providing the necessary help to optimize the development of children."

The project will emphasize the importance of working in teams, and the grant brings in both branches of the university's Department of Psychological Sciences: psychology and communication sciences.

3. A $425,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Justice will help Case Western Reserve's Begun Center for Violence Prevention Research and Education work with the city of Akron to analyze information in untested sexual assault kits. Identifying patterns of offender behavior could help the Akron Police Department respond to such assaults, a post said.

The team, led by research assistant professor Rachel Lovell, has also received two Department of Justice awards equaling $528,000 to continue similar work in Cuyahoga County.

4. CWRU and MetroHealth Medical Center researchers recently received more than $800,000 from the U.S. Department of Defense to study the experiences and needs of people with spinal cord injuries. Other partners include the United Spinal Association Northeast Ohio Chapter and the Louis Stokes Cleveland VA Medical Center.

The three-year project will focus on the first year of recovery, and researchers will interview veterans and civilians, as well as their caregivers, a post said.

5. Finally, researchers at the Case Western Reserve School of Medicine have received a grant of almost $700,000 through the National Institutes of Health Somatic Cell Genome Editing program. If researchers continue to meet NIH milestones, the grant amount could increase to $2.78 million, a post said.

The researchers are looking to develop strategies to deliver genome editing complexes directly to stem cells, which could change how certain diseases are treated.

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BREAKTHROUGH: Her vision was getting worse, then animal research made things clear – Speaking of Research

By daniellenierenberg

By Justin A. Varholick, Ph.D.

As we grow older theres an impending fear that we will slowly, but surely, begin to lose our vision. This slow loss of vision is clinically dubbed low vision and impacts more than 39 million Americans, costs $68 billion annually in direct health care costs, and is only growing in our population as baby boomers enter the at-risk age of 65 and older. Magnifiers can often be used to help people with acute issues of low vision, but are often inconvenient and frustrating. More serious issues of low vision such as cataracts, age-related macular degeneration, glaucoma, and diabetic retinopathy require advanced treatment and surgery. For example, cataracts can be improved or reversed by removing the cloudy lens and replacing it with an artificial one. Such surgeries are not always ideal, or convenient, and further contribute to the already hefty direct health care costs. But, a recent breakthrough by Japanese scientists, in correcting blurry vision, might reverse this bleak future.

Old cells can become new againOur story begins around the mid-20th century, in 1958. A young and aspiring scientist, named John Gurdon, was studying frogs at the University of Oxford in England. Not everyone thought Gurdon would end up actually becoming a scientist. In his early days his school master thought such a career was far-fetched for Gurdon. Indeed, he ranked last in his Biology class out of 250 students. Yet despite such poor grades, Gurdon found himself studying frogs at Oxford and earning a doctoral degree in Biology. And his studies would surprisingly lead to a breakthrough in vision, and likely many other issues in human health, like Parkinsons Disease, heart disease, and spinal cord injury.

At the time Gurdon was trying to test an age-old theory on cell development. Many scientists before him discovered that cells the smallest unit of life begin without a clear fate in the early stages of an embryo. Then as the cell develops, their fate becomes more clear. They become cells of the heart, of the brain, the kidneys, the stomach, the spinal cord, or the eyes. But they cannot go back to a time when they had no fate, or specialization. The cells can only develop in one direction, from no destiny, to a clear path, then to a mature adult cell; like one found in the heart. But you just cant take a heart cell and start the process over, maybe turning it into a brain cell.

In disagreement with this theory, Gurdon did a simple experiment. He knew that a tadpole has more adult cells than a frog egg. A tadpole has gills, a heart, eyes, etc., while a frog egg simply does not. So, he cut open the tadpole and removed a single cell from the intestine; an intestinal cell. He then cut open the intestinal cell and removed its nucleus; the seed of the cell carrying all the DNA. Very carefully, he did the same with the frog egg, and finally replaced the nucleus of the frog egg with the nucleus of the intestinal cell. According to the age-old theory, the intestinal nucleus should stop normal development of the frog egg. But thats not what happened.

Instead, the new frog egg continued to develop normally, becoming a tadpole that later became an adult frog. Gurdon thought this was unbelievably odd, and so did everyone else in science. After many more experiments doing the exact same procedure (i.e., replication), it seemed that what he saw was a real, replicable fact. For some reason the nucleus of the intestinal cell was able to reverse itself to have no fate and slowly develop into any other adult cell. The seed from the intestine somehow could become the seed of a heart, brain, kidney, or even an eye cell and of course, an intestinal cell too.

After many more experiments testing the same theory, on many more animals, it seemed the theory was true, but it just didnt work for mammals. Given that the same effect could not be repeated in a mammal, some believed this discovery did not apply to humans. But they were wrong.

The discovery of induced pluripotent stem cellsAlmost 45 years later, around the start of the millennium, Shinya Yamanaka and Kazutoshi Takahashi began running experiments that would translate Gurdons findings to humans. Born after Gurdons findings were already published and well known, Yamanaka and Takahashi grew up in a world in which the fact that old cells can become new again was widely knowna solid foundation for further hypotheses, experiments, and discovery. So, the scientists set out to do what no one had before: turn adult skin cells of mice into new cells without a clear fate.

Yamanaka, the lead investigator of the study, shared a similar early history with Gurdon. He first became a medical doctor in Japan but was frustrated by his inability to quickly remove small human tumors taking over an hour rather than the typical 10 minutes. Senior doctors gave him the nickname Jamanaka, a Japanese pun for the word jama meaning obstacle. He then found himself earning a PhD in pharmacology and becoming a post-doctoral scientist, but spent more time caring for mice than doing actual research. Frustrated again, his wife suggested he just become a practicing physician. Despite her advice, Yamanaka applied to become an Assistant Professor at Nara Institute of Science and Technology, in Japan, and won everyone over with his fantastical ideas of investigating embryonic stem cells; the cells without a clear fate.

Then the persistence paid off when Yamanaka with his assistant, Takahashi discovered how to induce adult skin cells from mice to return to an embryonic, or stem cell, state without a clear fate. They began their experiments knowing that gene transcription factors proteins that turn genes on and off were responsible for keeping embryonic cells in a state without a clear fate. They thought that by turning specific genes on and off with these factors, they could turn back time and make an adult cell embryonic again. So, they tried many different combinations of gene transcription factors and ultimately discovered that 4 specific ones were enough to induce an adult skin cell to a mouse to become an embryonic cell. Because these re-newed embryonic cells, or stem cells, originally came from adult cells they came up with a new name, induced pluripotent stem cell. Broken down, induced pluripotent stem cells means that the cell was induced to become pluripotent pluri meaning several, like plural, and potent meaning very powerful (and stem meaning to have the ability to turn into any cell in the body).

These induced pluripotent cells were thought to be very powerful indeed and scientists across the globe were excited by this great discovery. They had visions of taking a persons skin or blood, forming them into induced pluripotent cells, and then using them to grow a new liver or new parts of the brain. Laboratories across the world confirmed the results by repeating the experiment.

Human stem cells Just repeating the experiments in mice, or frogs, was not enough. They needed to begin making induced pluripotent stem cells from humans. Enter scientists from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. The lead scientist, James Thomson was already well known for deriving primate embryonic cells from rhesus monkeys in 1995 and the first human embryonic cell line in 1998. In fact, Thomsons accomplishment of isolating embryonic cells from monkeys was the first sound evidence that it was possible to do the same for humans. Such discoveries placed him on the forefront in ethical considerations for research using human embryos and the most obvious scientist to lead the path toward making induced pluripotent stem cells from humans.

Thomsons team made the first human derived induced pluripotent stem cells from adult skin, with Yamanaka as a co-scientist. They followed the same general principles set by Yamanaka, who did the procedure with mouse skin cells. Importantly to Thomson, this discovery helped to relieve some ethical controversy with using human embryos to make human stem cells. By being able to induce adult human skin to become pluripotent stem cells, much research on human stem cells could be done without human embryos albeit research with human embryos remains necessary.

Yet more important to the discussion at hand, the ability to induce human skin to become pluripotent stem cells placed us on the edge of a breakthrough. With some clinical trials in humans, the fantasy of growing a new liver, heart, or eye was more a reality than ever before.

The start of human trials In 2012, around the time both Gurdon and Yamanaka were presented with the Nobel Prize in Physiology and Medicine for their work leading to induced pluripotent stem cells, human clinical trials were beginning in Japan. The first clinical trial was for age-related macular degeneration, an eye condition leading to blindness. Unfortunately, this trial was quickly terminated when Yamanaka and his team identified small gene mutations in the transplanted induced pluripotent stem cells from the first patient. Although the procedure did cure the patient of macular degeneration, these small gene mutations worried the scientists because they could lead to tumor development.

But recently with the introduction of an inducible suicide gene that can signal cells with abnormal growth to die, human trials are starting up again. In October of 2018, Japanese scientists began trials with Parkinsons disease, a brain disease related to a shortage of neurons producing dopamine. Scientists took cells from the patients, made them into induced pluripotent stem cells, guided them to develop into dopamine producing cells, and then deposited them in the dopamine centers of the brain through surgery. The outcome is promising since similar procedures in monkeys have been successful.

Other trials in Japan have also started, including spinal cord injury and one for replacing the cornea of the eye. Early results replacing damaged corneas with induced pluripotent stem cells, thereby correcting blurry vision, were just announced at the end of August. Although it will take more patients and safety checks before all humans can get induced pluripotent cells to correct their damaged eyes, malfunctioning brains, or broken spinal cords, Takahashi the post-doctoral scientist working with Yamanaka thinks it might happen as early as 2023. So, it looks like that in our lifetime we just might be able to stay young and enjoy retirement because of great breakthroughs in animal research.Note, EuroStemCell is a great resource for learning more about the ethics and research currently being done with stem cells derived from human embryos.

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BREAKTHROUGH: Her vision was getting worse, then animal research made things clear - Speaking of Research

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Defensins and the dermis – Dermatology Times

By daniellenierenberg

Wound healing is complex. Injured tissues undergo a multi-phase process from hemostasis to tissue remodeling. And defensin plays a role.

Basically, it's your natural mechanism for healing a wound, and it stimulates a specific stem cell, the LGR6+ stem cell, according to Greg Keller, M.D., who presented Clinical Data with Defensins at the Global Aesthetic Conference in Miami earlier this month.

After activation, LGR6+ stem cells physically migrate into the basal layer of the skin and create a new epidermis, and eventually, new, younger-acting skin, says Dr. Keller.

In her Cosmeceutical Critique of The role of defensins in treating skin aging, Leslie Baumann, M.D., writes, LGR6+ stem cells, which are dormant until they are activated to respond to damage, are stimulated by defensins.1

She effectively summarizes their role in anti-aging as:

Old fibroblast and keratinocytes are sluggish and lazy. Old cells do not hear signals as well as younger cells. LGR6+ stem cells repopulate the epidermis with new, young keratinocytes. Defensin stimulates LGR6+ stem cells. The defensin/LGR6+ pathway plays a role in keratinization. Using topical defensin can improve the skins appearance.

Theoretically, says Dr. Keller, hair follicles provide a way for defensins to enter the skin to activate the LGR6+ pathway, but We wanted to actually measure wrinkles and quantify how much better the skin was in terms of pore size, oiliness, wrinkles, and the like.

So he, Amy Taub, M.D., Vivian Bucay, M.D., Jay Williams, Ph.D, and Darius Mehregan, M.D., conducted a participant- and investigator-blinded, placebo-controlled, multi-center study with the defensin-containing DefenAge 3-step system (Progenitor Biologics) that includes the 2-Minute Reveal Masque, 24/7 Barrier Balance Cream and 8-in-1 BioSerum, on 44 women, 41-71 years of age with skin types I to V.2

References:

1. Taub A, Bucay V, Keller G, Williams J, Mehregan D. Multi-Center, Double-Blind, Vehicle-Controlled Clinical Trial of an Alpha and Beta Defensin-Containing Anti-Aging Skin Care Regimen With Clinical, Histopathologic, Immunohistochemical, Photographic, and Ultrasound Evaluation. J Drugs Dermatol. 2018;17(4):426-441.2. Bauman L. The role of defensins in treating skin aging. Cosmeceutical Critique. MDedge Dermatology. April 1, 2018. Accessed November 13, 2019. Available at: https://www.mdedge.com/dermatology/article/161149/aesthetic-dermatology/...

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What to do in Macau: The 66th Grand Prix, $28888 wine dinners and more – Lifestyle Asia

By daniellenierenberg

Macau is the ultimate setting for some high octane fun this weekend with the return of the annual Macau Grand Prix, now heading into its 66th year. As the city is pulsing with adrenaline, there are plenty of gastronomic highlights as well as the creme de la creme of lifestyle experiences to keep on your radar. Here are all the best events to check out in Macau this month.

When: 16 November

Price: MOP501,000 from Macau Grand Prix

The annual mecca for motorsports is back: Macau opens its venerated 6.2km Guia Circuit as the annual Macau Grand Prix edges into its 66th edition. Veteran and young drivers alike are descending on the SAR for the ultimate glory across three headlining races the Formula 3 Macau Grand Prix, the FIA GT World Cup, and the FIA WTCR, also known as the Macau Guia Race. Sundays Grand Prix finale will have all eyes on some of the worlds best racers such as F3 world champion Dan Ticktum as he returns to the spotlight to vie for his third consecutive win at Macau; alongside newcomers such as David Schumacher, nephew of seven-time Formula 1 winner Michael.

If youre not watching from the Grand Stand or the thrilling Lisboa Bend Stand, for a vantage point to catch all the action in comfort, youll want to head to the Grand Lapa for its annual Grand Prix Live BBQ Buffet all weekend from 1617 November, which will also be broadcasting live on mega screens.

More info here.

When: 30 November1 December

Price: HK$5881,688 from MGM

Actor-turned-chef Nicholas Tse is lending both sides of his talents to this unique food and music festival held for the very first time in Macau. MGM is hosting two nights of unmissable concerts by Tse and fellow Canto-pop stars JW, Joey Yung, rock group Mr., Angela Hui, Chinese singer Liu Junge, Singaporean songstress Joanna Dong, and Macanese band MFM. Alongside two nights of performances, Chef Nic has also partnered with MGMs most eminent chefs to deliver mouthwatering menus of local delicacies, as well as live demonstrations featuring popular chef collaborations from his TV show brought to life. Dont miss this rare chance for dinner and a show.

MGM COTAI, 1/F Roof Terrace, Avenida Da Nave Desportiva, Cotai, Macau, +853 8806 8888

When: Through 29 February, 2020

Theres nothing better than a steamy hot pot dinner during the cooler months: Head to Broadway Macau for a foodie extravaganza of Macanese delicacies for its fourth Hot Pot Street promotion for an eclectic taste of the Cantonese winter tradition. The hotels flagship food street introduces 20 authentic varieties of hot pots showcasing a full spectrum of broths, casseroles and winter warmers from an array of international cuisines, paired with spreads of fresh seafood, organic produce, and premium beef from all over the world.

Broadway Macau, Avenida Marginal Flor de Lotus, Cotai, Macau, +853 8883 3338

The latest hot opening adding to the epicurean haven that is Taipa Village is none other than Barcelona, an innovative new Spanish restaurant and bar by chef Hector Costa Fernandez. Dishing up modern tapas and refreshed Spanish classics, Barcelona is a three-storey venue with a stylish ground floor bar and chefs table overlooking an open kitchen, a first-floor dining room inspired by its eponymous city, and an exotic rooftop bar offering views over the vibrant entertainment area below.

Barcelona, 47 Rua dos Clerigos, Taipa, Macau, +853 2845 5168

Facialist to the stars Margie Lombard, founder of Margys of Monte-Carlo brings an exclusive spa experience to Morpheus this autumn. Famed for her gold mask facial, Margys upgrades her ultimate skin rejuvenating treatment with a new platinum mask treatment that is solely available at Morpheus Spa. Book into one of only six suites for an exalted 110-minute session of pampering with the Prestige Facial with Platinum Mask (MOP3,980), and watch as the chainmail-like platinum mask does its work to retexturise skin for an unbeatable lasting radiance. The Platinum mask is also available as a 20-minute add-on (MOP2,500) together with Margys prized bespoke Stem Cell Illuminating Facial (MOP3,800), which uses a new serum featuring the regenerating power of Swiss Apple stem cells.

Morpheus Spa, 35/F, Morpheus, City of Dreams, Estrada do Istmo, Macau, +853 8868 3098

When: 16 November and 25 January, 2020

Price: MOP28,888 + 10 percent service charge

City of Dreams two-Michelin-starred Alain Ducasse by the eponymous legend is home to some of the most exclusive French haute cuisine menus in this part of the world as it is, but this autumn the restaurant is presenting two unprecedented wine-pairing dinners, billed as featuring some of the greatest vintages of all time. On 16 November, guests can look forward to five rare vintages from Domaine de la Romane-Conti, as well as a prize draw to win a bottle of 1997 Grands-chzeaux. On 25 January next year, guests can also book in as they celebrate Bordeauxs landmark 1982 vintage with a horizontal tasting of Chteau Pichon Longueville Comtesse de Lalande, Chteau Mouton Rothschild, Chteau Margaux, Chteau Cheval Blanc and Chteau Lafite Rothschild and have the opportunity to win a bottle of 1982 Chteau Margaux. Priced at MOP28,888 per person, these exclusive wine dinners will feature a tailor-made seven course menu and kick off with a glass of Dom Prignon 2009, followed by five rare vintages and Grand Crus. Make your reservation by email to adam@cod-macau.com or call +853 8868 3432.

Alain Ducasse, Level 3, Morpheus, City of Dreams, Estrada do Istmo, Macau, +853 8868 3432

Price: MOP7801,280

The St. Regis Macaos Iridium Spa has unveiled its newest treatment, a session that combines both mindful and physical therapy by allowing guests to create their own blended diffuser scents and body scrubs. After spending time learning more about the healing powers of aromatherapy, the guest is given a 45-minute massage and body treatment thats sure to melt away all the tensions of the mind and body.

Iridium Spa, 38/F, St. Regis Macao, S/N, Estrada do Istmo, Macau, +853 8113 4949

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Todos and Amarantus JV Announces Full Enrollment for Clinical Trial of LymPro Alzheimers Blood Test Relationship with Amyloid PET – Yahoo Finance

By daniellenierenberg

REHOVOT, Israel and NEW YORK, Nov. 14, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Todos Medical Ltd. (TOMDF), a clinical-stage in-vitro diagnostics company focused on the development of blood tests for the early detection of cancer and neurodegenerative disorders, and Amarantus Bioscience Holdings, Inc. a US-based JLABS-alumnus biotechnology holding company developing proprietary orphan neurologic, regenerative medicine and ophthalmic therapies and diagnostics through its subsidiaries, today announced that their joint venture company, Breakthrough Diagnostics, Inc. has completed enrollment of its ongoing clinical trial evaluating the relationship of Alzheimers blood diagnostic Lymphocyte Proliferation Test (LymPro Test) with amyloid PET neuroimaging at Leipzig University in Germany (the LymPro PET 2). Topline results are expected before the end of the first quarter of 2020.

Breakthrough completed a 20-subject clinical study (LymPro PET 1) in 2018 evaluating the correlation between LymPro scores and the diagnosis of Alzheimers disease, as confirmed with amyloid PET neuroimaging and other Alzheimers disease biomarkers. LymPro measures cell cycle dysregulation in peripheral lymphocytes. The top-line data, announced in July 2019, revealed a strong and statistically significant correlation between LymPro scores and amyloid PET neuroimaging cSUVR scores (r = -0.849; p = 0.00000216). Breakthroughs academic collaborators at the Leipzig University then expanded enrollment of that study to include an additional cohort of 20 subjects (LymPro PET 2) to confirm the strong relationship seen from LymPro PET 1. The data from both LymPro 1 and LymPro 2 will be published together in a peer-reviewed journal in 2020.

LymPro is a unique immune system-based Alzheimers blood test, said Dr. Herman Weiss, President & CEO of Todos. LymPro could prove to be a major breakthrough for Alzheimers disease diagnosis by measuring cell cycle dysregulation and amyloid, together, conveniently as part of a blood workup in routine clinical practice. The therapeutic field in Alzheimers has begun to see some renewed hope based upon recent Aducanumab data announced by Biogen that is directly related to the amyloid hypothesis, as well as conditional approval by the National Medical Products Administration in China for the first new Alzheimers drug in over 20 years, called Oligomannate from Shanghai Green Valley Pharmaceuticals, that is based on gut-brain biology of the microbiome and its effects on the immune system. We believe this renewed optimism and broadening of pathophysiological hypotheses relevant to Alzheimers disease being evaluated in the clinic significantly increases the scope for LymPro pharma services collaborations and begins to refine LymPros clinical utility profile for primary care physicians as strategies to correct cell cycle dysregulation emerge.

About Alzheimer's DiseaseAccording to the Alzheimer's Association, it is estimated that over 5.4 million people in the United States suffer from Alzheimer's disease. Over 500,000 patients are diagnosed annually, with nearly one-in-eight older Americans affected by the disease. Alzheimer's disease is the third leading cause of death in the United States. The cost of unpaid care in the United States is estimated at over $210 billion annually.Total payments for care are estimated at over $200 billion annually, including $140 billion in cost to Medicare and Medicaid. Alzheimer's expenditures in the United States are expected to exceed $1.2 trillion by 2050. There is no cure or effective treatment for Alzheimer's disease. Worldwide, about 35.6 million individuals have the disease and, according to the World Health Organization, the number will double every 20 years to 115.4 million people with Alzheimer's by 2050.

About Dr. Arendt's Research at Leipzig UniversityDr. Thomas Arendt is Professor of Neuroscience at Leipzig University where he runs the Paul Flechsig Institute of Brain Research. He has a 30-year record in R&D of therapeutic and diagnostic strategies of neurodegenerative disorders and made several seminal contributions to therapeutic concepts of Alzheimer's disease, including stem cell therapy and modulating tumor suppressor genes. In the early 1980's, he was involved in identifying the degeneration of the cholinergic system in Alzheimer's disease laying the basis for today's only available treatment. He is one of the pioneers of the "cell-cycle theory" of Alzheimer's disease, which he developed towards a diagnostic and therapeutic concept.

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About Breakthrough Diagnostics, Inc.Breakthrough Diagnostics, Inc. is a joint venture owned by Amarantus Bioscience Holdings, Inc. (AMBS) (80.01%) and Todos Medical Ltd. (19.99%). Breakthrough has been assigned the intellectual property and other rights to the LymPro Test, a diagnostic blood test for Alzheimers disease, as well as rights to other neurological diagnostics testing intellectual property. Todos Medical has provided Amarantus with notice of Todos decision to exercise its exclusive option to acquire the 80.01% of Breakthrough Diagnostics that it currently does not own.

The Lymphocyte Proliferation Test (LymPro Test) determines the ability of peripheral blood lymphocytes (PBLs) and monocytes to withstand an exogenous mitogenic stimulation that induces them to enter the cell cycle. It is believed that certain diseases, most notably Alzheimer's disease, are the result of compromised cellular machinery that leads to aberrant cell cycle re-entry by neurons, which then leads to apoptosis. LymPro is unique in the use of peripheral blood lymphocytes as surrogates for neuronal cell function, suggesting a common relationship between PBLs and neurons in the brain.

About Todos Medical Ltd.Todos Medical Ltd. is an in-vitro diagnostic company engaged in the development of blood tests for the early detection of a variety of cancers, and also has initiated the development of blood tests for neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer's disease through Breakthrough Diagnostics, Inc., its joint venture with Amarantus Bioscience Holdings, Inc. Todos has developed two cancer screening tests based on TBIA (Todos Biochemical Infrared Analyses), a method for cancer screening using peripheral blood analysis. The TBIA screening method is based on the cancers influence on the immune system, which triggers biochemical changes in peripheral blood mononuclear cells and plasma. This proprietary and patented method incorporates biochemistry, physics and signal processing. The companys two cancer screening tests, TM-B1 and TM-B2, have received the CE mark. Breakthrough Diagnostics is developing the LymPro Test, a blood test for diagnosing Alzheimers disease.

For more information, the content of which is not part of this press release, please visithttp://www.todosmedical.com

About Amarantus Bioscience Holdings, Inc.Amarantus Bioscience Holdings (AMBS) is a JLABS alumnus biotechnology company developing treatments and diagnostics for diseases in the areas of neurology, regenerative medicine and orphan diseases through its subsidiaries. The Companys 80.01%-owned subsidiaryBreakthrough Diagnostics, Inc.,currently a joint venture with Todos Medical, Ltd., has licensed intellectual property rights to the Alzheimers blood diagnostic LymPro Test from Leipzig University that was originally developed by Dr. Thomas Arendt, as well as certain rights to multiple sclerosis diagnostic MSPrecise and Parkinsons diagnostic NuroPro. Amarantus entered into a joint venture agreement withTodos Medical, Ltd. to advance diagnostic screening assets and Todos has exercised its exclusive option to acquire Amarantus remaining ownership in Breakthrough in exchange for approximately 50% ownership of Todos. The transaction is expected close before the end of the first quarter of 2020. Amarantus also owns approximately 30% of the common shares of Avant Diagnostics, Inc., a healthcare data-generating technology company that specializes in biomarker assay services that target multiple areas of oncology. Avant provides precision oncology data through its TheraLink assays to assist the biopharmaceutical industry and clinical oncologists in identifying likely responders, initially for breast cancer, to over 70 FDA-approved drug treatments.

AMBS 50%-owned subsidiaryElto Pharma, Inc. has development rights to eltoprazine, a Phase 2b-ready small molecule indicated for Parkinson's disease levodopa-induced dyskinesia, Alzheimers aggression and adult attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, commonly known as ADHD. AMBS acquiredCutanogen Corporationfrom Lonza Group in 2015. Cutanogen is preparing for pivotal studies with Engineered Skin Substitute (ESS) for the treatment of pediatric life-threatening severe burns. ESS is a regenerative medicine-based, autologous full-thickness skin graft technology originally developed by the Shriners Hospital that can be used to treat severe burns, as well as several other catastrophic and cosmetic dermatological indications. AMBS wholly-owned subsidiary,MANF Therapeutics Inc.owns key intellectual property rights and licenses from a number of prominent universities related to the development of the therapeutic protein known as mesencephalic astrocyte-derived neurotrophic factor (MANF). MANF Therapeutics is developing MANF-based products as treatments for ophthalmological disorders such as Wolfram Syndrome, Retinitis Pigmentosa and Glaucoma, as well as neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinsons disease. MANF was discovered by the Companys Chief Scientific Officer John Commissiong, PhD. Dr. Commissiong discovered MANF from AMBS proprietary discovery engine PhenoGuard, and believes several other neurotrophic factors remain to be discovered. Amarantus has entered into a binding letter of intent to license the therapeutic assets from Elto Pharma, Cutanogen and MANF Therapeutics to Emerald Organic Products.

Forward-looking StatementsCertain statements contained in this press release may constitute forward-looking statements. For example, forward-looking statements are used when discussing our expected clinical development programs and clinical trials. These forward-looking statements are based only on current expectations of management, and are subject to significant risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those described in the forward-looking statements, including the risks and uncertainties related to the progress, timing, cost, and results of clinical trials and product development programs; difficulties or delays in obtaining regulatory approval or patent protection for product candidates; competition from other biotechnology companies; and our ability to obtain additional funding required to conduct our research, development and commercialization activities. In addition, the following factors, among others, could cause actual results to differ materially from those described in the forward-looking statements: changes in technology and market requirements; delays or obstacles in launching our clinical trials; changes in legislation; inability to timely develop and introduce new technologies, products and applications; lack of validation of our technology as we progress further and lack of acceptance of our methods by the scientific community; inability to retain or attract key employees whose knowledge is essential to the development of our products; unforeseen scientific difficulties that may develop with our process; greater cost of final product than anticipated; loss of market share and pressure on pricing resulting from competition; and laboratory results that do not translate to equally good results in real settings, all of which could cause the actual results or performance to differ materially from those contemplated in such forward-looking statements. Except as otherwise required by law, Todos Medical does not undertake any obligation to publicly release any revisions to these forward-looking statements to reflect events or circumstances after the date hereof or to reflect the occurrence of unanticipated events. For a more detailed description of the risks and uncertainties affecting Todos Medical, please refer to its reports filed from time to time with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

Todos Investor and Corporate Contact:Kim Sutton GolodetzLHA Investor RelationsSenior Vice President (212) 838-3777kgolodetz@lhai.com

Todos Corporate ContactDaniel HirschTodos MedicalInvestor RelationsEmail:Dan.h@todosmedical.comPhone: (347) 699-0029

Amarantus Investor and Media Contact:Gerald CommissiongPresident & CEOOffice: 650-862-5391Email: gerald@amarantus.com

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Improved biosensor technology may lead to safe stem cell therapies for treating neurological disorders – News-Medical.net

By daniellenierenberg

A Rutgers-led team has created better biosensor technology that may help lead to safe stem cell therapies for treating Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases and other neurological disorders.

The technology, which features a unique graphene and gold-based platform and high-tech imaging, monitors the fate of stem cells by detecting genetic material (RNA) involved in turning such cells into brain cells (neurons), according to a study in the journal Nano Letters.

Stem cells can become many different types of cells. As a result, stem cell therapy shows promise for regenerative treatment of neurological disorders such as Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, stroke and spinal cord injury, with diseased cells needing replacement or repair.

But characterizing stem cells and controlling their fate must be resolved before they could be used in treatments. The formation of tumors and uncontrolled transformation of stem cells remain key barriers.

A critical challenge is ensuring high sensitivity and accuracy in detecting biomarkers - indicators such as modified genes or proteins - within the complex stem cell microenvironment. Our technology, which took four years to develop, has demonstrated great potential for analyzing a variety of interactions in stem cells."

KiBum Lee

Lee is the senior author and a professor in the Department of Chemistry and Chemical Biology in the School of Arts and Sciences at Rutgers University-New Brunswick.

The team's unique biosensing platform consists of an array of ultrathin graphene layers and gold nanostructures. The platform, combined with high-tech imaging (Raman spectroscopy), detects genes and characterizes different kinds of stem cells with greater reliability, selectivity and sensitivity than today's biosensors.

The team believes the technology can benefit a range of applications. By developing simple, rapid and accurate sensing platforms, Lee's group aims to facilitate treatment of neurological disorders through stem cell therapy.

Stem cells may become a renewable source of replacement cells and tissues to treat diseases including macular degeneration, spinal cord injury, stroke, burns, heart disease, diabetes, osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis, according to the National Institutes of Health.

Source:

Journal reference:

Yang, L. et al. (2019) Dual-Enhanced Raman Scattering-Based Characterization of Stem Cell Differentiation Using Graphene-Plasmonic Hybrid Nanoarray. Nano Letters. doi.org/10.1021/acs.nanolett.9b03402.

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Learn How You Can Treat Your Pain with Regenerative Medicine! – Patch.com

By daniellenierenberg

Have you wondered about new and innovative pain treatment processes that could change your quality of life?

Join us Monday, December 16, 7PM at the Woodbridge Main Library as Manisha Chahal, MD of Edison-Metuchen Orthopaedic Group discusses Regenerative Medicine to Treat Pain. Dr. Chahal will walk us through the promising results of regenerative medicine with a focus on platelet rich plasma and stem cells. She will explain how this process works and the evidence to support this cutting edge science. Dr. Chahal will also describe the best practices to go about and the indications to look out for. She will disclose how to avoid misleading providers and illegitimate products.

About Dr. Manisha Chahal, MD

Dr. Manisha Chahal is a board certified Interventional Pain Management Physician who specializes in minimally invasive procedures for pain.

Dr. Chahal treats the following conditions: headache, lower back pain, joint pain, neck pain, CRPS, postherpetic neuralgia, abdominal wall pain, pelvic pain, coccydynia, and sciatica.

Additionally, Dr. Chahal also performs the following procedures: spinal cord stimulators, regenerative medicine (PRP & stem cell injections), Botox for migraines, cervical epidural steroid injection, lumbar translaminar or transforaminal epidural steroid injections, cervical and lumbar facet rhizotomy, discograms, nerve blocks (ultrasound & C-arm guided), knee genicular blocks & rhizotomy, joint injections, trigger point injections, and qutenza treatment (chemical rhizotomy) for PHN pain.

She received her medical degree from Howard University where she was awarded a Trustee Scholarship for academic achievement. She completed her anesthesia residency training at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (Harvard) in Boston. Dr. Chahal did her Pain Management Fellowship at New York Presbyterian/ Weill Cornell Medical Center in NYC. She is board certified by the American Board of Anesthesiology for both anesthesia and pain medicine.

She treats a wide variety of pain diagnoses and has expertise in many procedures including spinal cord stimulators, transforaminal epidural injections, rhizotomies, ultrasound guided nerve blocks, regenerative treatments and botox.

Dr. Chahal's philosophy is use every pain management option available to help patients ease their pain and "get their life back."

The Woodbridge Main Library is located at 1 George Frederick Plaza in Woodbridge, NJ. If you have any questions or need any further information please contact us at 732-634-4450 or visit our website -www.woodbrigelibrary.org.

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Learn How You Can Treat Your Pain with Regenerative Medicine! - Patch.com

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Sodium Selenite Improves The Therapeutic Effect Of BMSCs Via Promoting | OTT – Dove Medical Press

By daniellenierenberg

Dongmei Yan,1,* Botao Tang,2,* Lixin Yan,3 Lei Zhang,1 Meijuan Miao,1 Xi Chen,4 Guangyi Sui,5 Qi Zhang,1 Daoyuan Liu,1 Hui Wang1

1Department of Blood Transfusion, The Second Affiliated Hospital of Harbin Medical University, Harbin, Peoples Republic of China; 2Department of Cardiology, Heilongjiang Red Cross Hospital, Harbin, Peoples Republic of China; 3Department of Laboratory Medicine, The Second Affiliated Hospital of Harbin Medical University, Harbin, Peoples Republic of China; 4Department of Hematology, The Second Affiliated Hospital of Harbin Medical University, Harbin, Peoples Republic of China; 5Ethics Committee, The Tumor Hospital Affiliated to Harbin Medical University, Harbin, Peoples Republic of China

*These authors contributed equally to this work

Correspondence: Hui WangDepartment of Blood Transfusion, The Second Affiliated Hospital, Harbin Medical University, Xuefu Road No. 246, Nangang District, Harbin, Heilongjiang Province, Peoples Republic of ChinaTel +86-451-86605134Email wanghui@hrbmu.edu.cn

Purpose: Sodium selenite (Na2SeO3) has been known to restore the antioxidant capacity of bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells (BMSCs), reduce the production of reactive oxygen species (ROS) in the cells, and promote cell proliferation and inhibit cell apoptosis. However, it is still not clear whether selenium can mediate the differentiation and inhibit the induced hemagglutination of BMSCs. In this study, we attempted to explore the effect of Na2SeO3 on these aspects of BMSCs.Methods: We evaluated the fate of the MSCs isolated from the bone marrow of mice by studying their differentiation and proliferation after treatment with Na2SeO3. We also simultaneously evaluated the coagulation reaction induced by Na2SeO3-treated BMSCs in vitro.Results: While the mice-derived BMSCs expressed CD44, CD73, CD90, and CD105, they did not express CD45. The morphology of the derived cells was homogeneously elongated. These results showed that the isolated cells are indeed BMSCs. We found that 0.1 M and 1 M of Na2SeO3 promoted the proliferation and apoptosis of BMSCs, respectively. This showed that Na2SeO3 can be toxic and exert certain side effects on the BMSCs. The results of the osteogenic and adipogenic assay showed that 0.1 M Na2SeO3 could significantly promote the osteogenic and adipogenic differentiation of BMSCs by upregulating the lipid factors (LPL and PPRAG) and osteogenic factors, RUNX2, COL1, and BGP, in a concentration-dependent manner. Coagulation experiments in animals (mice and rats) revealed that Na2SeO3 can reduce the coagulation time of BMSCs in a concentration-dependent manner, which is related to the high expression of hematopoietic factors (SDF-1, GM-CSF, IL-7, IL-8, IL-11, and SCF).Conclusion: Na2SeO3 promotes the proliferation and differentiation as well as reduces the coagulation time of BMSCs, and this effect might enhance the therapeutic effect of BMSCs.

Keywords: sodium selenite, BMSCs, proliferation, differentiation, coagulation factors, clotting time

This work is published and licensed by Dove Medical Press Limited. The full terms of this license are available at https://www.dovepress.com/terms.php and incorporate the Creative Commons Attribution - Non Commercial (unported, v3.0) License.By accessing the work you hereby accept the Terms. Non-commercial uses of the work are permitted without any further permission from Dove Medical Press Limited, provided the work is properly attributed. For permission for commercial use of this work, please see paragraphs 4.2 and 5 of our Terms.

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Be the Match and Make a Difference – Fairfield Mirror

By daniellenierenberg

On Wednesday, Nov. 6, the Be the Match Club at Fairfield University hosted a donor registration drive to encourage students to sign up to be a bone marrow donor.

Be the Match is an organization that seeks to help people who are suffering from blood cancer or blood diseases and are in need of a transplant. Be the Match, operated by the National Marrow Donor Program, provides patients with a way to find a transplant match, which could be their last chance for a cure. There is a large number of diseases that could be treated with a transplant, including Hodgkin and non-Hodgkin lymphoma, different types of leukemia and severe aplastic anemia.

The Be the Match Club at Fairfield University started in the fall of 2018 when a group of studentswas inspired by a fellow Stag who had to withdraw from school when he was re-diagnosed with cancer. The clubs goal is to spread awareness about the organization and increase the database of donors, so there is a greater chance for a patient to find their match.

Were trying to get as many people as possible to sign up, Brian Gozzo 20, Vice President of the Be the Match Club, says. Currently were at 20 million. We hope to one day have basically the entire planet, ideally, on it.

A donor-patient match is found by having the donor swab the inside of their cheek to gather DNA that is tested against the patient. If the two have a similar human leukocyte antigen, they are a close match for a transplant. After signing up for the registry at Fairfield University, a cheek-swabbing kit will be sent to your house, and then will be sent back for the stem cells to be tested.

Its super simple, Gozzo says. All it takes is a cheek swab, and, like, five minutes of your time, and youre put on [the registry] till youre 61. If youre matched with someone right then, youll probably receive a phone call, and then that will take another couple weeks until you actually have to donate.

If a match is found, the actual donation process could go one of two ways. One way to donate is to give peripheral blood stem cells, which is a non-surgical procedure that extracts blood through a needle, puts it through a machine that separates the blood cells and then returns the remaining blood into the body. The other option for donation is to give bone marrow through a surgical procedure that removes liquid marrow from the pelvic bone.

Gozzo understands that this can sound scary, but the chances of getting a phone call is pretty slim. He says that only one in about four hundred people on the registry will ever have to donate.

One thing we want people to know is dont be scared that were gonna call you and say the next day you have to be here, across the country and donate, Gozzo said. Its a very lengthy process, theres a lot of people involved and its very safe.

For Gozzo, the most important thing is to spread awareness and increase the number of people on the registry and the chances of a life-saving donation. He says, You could just sit on the registry until you turn 61 and never once receive a phone call, but just know that, like, you still were there and youve still done your part.

Gozzo, a resident assistant, was motivated to form the Be the Match Club at Fairfield University with a few other RAs last year when the student had to withdraw. They reached out to Be the Match for help.

When the student had to withdraw, a couple of the RAs wanted to know what we could do to help. Could we find a match for this kid? Gozzo said. Course, thats very, very difficult.

However, last years drive was not the first appearance Be the Match has made at Fairfield University. Senior Julia Giampietro and her roommate brought a Be the Match drive themselves to Fairfield in their sophomore year. She reached out to the Connecticut Be the Match region leader, who helped them set up a drive that brought over 60 students to join the national bone marrow donor registry. Giampietro was influenced to raise awareness for this organization for a personal reason.

I wanted to bring [Be the Match] to Fairfield in honor of my cousin Christopher who passed away from AML Leukemia in October of my freshman year at Fairfield, Giampietro said via email. He went through a bone marrow transplant, was in remission and relapsed a year later. He received a second bone marrow transplant but the cancer took over his body He was and still is the biggest inspiration in my life and no matter what would always say its all good which is the motto my family and I live by now.

Giampietro continued work with Be the Match throughout her junior and senior years. She was also inspired by the Fairfield student who had to withdraw last year, so she worked with students in younger grades to put on another drive in the fall of 2018, which is when the Be the Match Club was born. Giampietro and her roommate decided to put together an event for the student at the Seagrape Cafe, where they raised almost $2,000 for his family from donations at the door and from other Fairfield Students.

That was probably the biggest accomplishment of our 3 years involved with Be the Match and was a great way to close the year and our time in the club, Giampietro said. It was also amazing to see how much support we got and the feeling of being able to make a small difference for a local peer and family.

Although her time with Be the Match at Fairfield University is over, Giampietro has high hopes for the club and the organization in the years to come.

My biggest hope really is to have students become more aware and educated about [Be the Match], Giampietro said. It is so important for people our age to be educated on this amazing cause because we are the ones who can save peoples lives.

Be the Match will hold their next donor registration drive in the spring of 2020. To learn more about the organization or become a donor, visit https://bethematch.org/.

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BrainStorm Cell Therapeutics Announces Ralph Kern MD MHSc to Present at the 7th International Stem Cell Meeting – Yahoo Finance

By daniellenierenberg

NEW YORK, Nov. 12, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- BrainStorm Cell Therapeutics, Inc. (NASDAQ:BCLI), a leading developer of adult stem cell therapies for neurodegenerative diseases, today announced that the Companys Chief Operating and Chief Medical Officer Ralph Kern MD MHSc will present at the 7th International Stem Cell Meeting, which is hosted by the Israel Stem Cell Society. The Conference will be held November 12-13, in Tel Aviv, Israel.

Ralph Kern, MD, MHSc, said: I welcome the opportunity to participate in the 7th International Stem Cell Meeting where I will share the advances BrainStorm has made with NurOwn. It is a privilege to participate and to exchange ideas with many of the international scientific leaders in stem cell research.

About NurOwn

NurOwn (autologous MSC-NTF) cells represent a promising investigational therapeutic approach to targeting disease pathways important in neurodegenerative disorders. MSC-NTF cells are produced from autologous, bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) that have been expanded and differentiated ex vivo. MSCs are converted into MSC-NTF cells by growing them under patented conditions that induce the cells to secrete high levels of neurotrophic factors. Autologous MSC-NTF cells can effectively deliver multiple NTFs and immunomodulatory cytokines directly to the site of damage to elicit a desired biological effect and ultimately slow or stabilize disease progression. BrainStorm has fully enrolled a Phase 3 pivotal trial of autologous MSC-NTF cells for the treatment of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). BrainStorm also recently received U.S. FDA acceptance to initiate a Phase 2 open-label multicenter trial in progressive MS and enrollment began in March 2019.

About BrainStorm Cell Therapeutics Inc.

BrainStorm Cell Therapeutics Inc. is a leading developer of innovative autologous adult stem cell therapeutics for debilitating neurodegenerative diseases. The Company holds the rights to clinical development and commercialization of the NurOwn technology platform used to produce autologous MSC-NTF cells through an exclusive, worldwide licensing agreement. Autologous MSC-NTF cells have received Orphan Drug status designation from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (U.S. FDA) and the European Medicines Agency (EMA) in ALS. BrainStorm has fully enrolled a Phase 3 pivotal trial in ALS (NCT03280056), investigating repeat-administration of autologous MSC-NTF cells at six U.S. sites supported by a grant from the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM CLIN2-0989). The pivotal study is intended to support a filing for U.S. FDA approval of autologous MSC-NTF cells in ALS. BrainStorm also recently received U.S. FDA clearance to initiate a Phase 2 open-label multicenter trial in progressive Multiple Sclerosis. The Phase 2 study of autologous MSC-NTF cells in patients with progressive MS (NCT03799718) started enrollment in March 2019. For more information, visit the company's website at http://www.brainstorm-cell.com

Safe-Harbor Statement

Statements in this announcement other than historical data and information, including statements regarding future clinical trial enrollment and data, constitute "forward-looking statements" and involve risks and uncertainties that could causeBrainStorm Cell Therapeutics Inc.'sactual results to differ materially from those stated or implied by such forward-looking statements. Terms and phrases such as "may", "should", "would", "could", "will", "expect", "likely", "believe", "plan", "estimate", "predict", "potential", and similar terms and phrases are intended to identify these forward-looking statements. The potential risks and uncertainties include, without limitation, BrainStorms need to raise additional capital, BrainStorms ability to continue as a going concern, regulatory approval of BrainStorms NurOwn treatment candidate, the success of BrainStorms product development programs and research, regulatory and personnel issues, development of a global market for our services, the ability to secure and maintain research institutions to conduct our clinical trials, the ability to generate significant revenue, the ability of BrainStorms NurOwn treatment candidate to achieve broad acceptance as a treatment option for ALS or other neurodegenerative diseases, BrainStorms ability to manufacture and commercialize the NurOwn treatment candidate, obtaining patents that provide meaningful protection, competition and market developments, BrainStorms ability to protect our intellectual property from infringement by third parties, heath reform legislation, demand for our services, currency exchange rates and product liability claims and litigation,; and other factors detailed in BrainStorm's annual report on Form 10-K and quarterly reports on Form 10-Q available athttp://www.sec.gov. These factors should be considered carefully, and readers should not place undue reliance on BrainStorm's forward-looking statements. The forward-looking statements contained in this press release are based on the beliefs, expectations and opinions of management as of the date of this press release. We do not assume any obligation to update forward-looking statements to reflect actual results or assumptions if circumstances or management's beliefs, expectations or opinions should change, unless otherwise required by law. Although we believe that the expectations reflected in the forward-looking statements are reasonable, we cannot guarantee future results, levels of activity, performance or achievements.

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BrainStorm Cell Therapeutics Announces Ralph Kern MD MHSc to Present at the 7th International Stem Cell Meeting - Yahoo Finance

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Heartbreaking moment dad meets the woman who saved his life – he feared his son would grow up without a father – Manchester Evening News

By daniellenierenberg

This is the tear-jerking moment a dad shares a hug with the woman who saved his life.

James O'Donnell, from Burnage, feared the worst after being diagnosed with a blood disorder similar to leukaemia in 2016.

Usual treatments were failing and James was undergoing a blood transfusion every week while battling constant infections, the Liverpool Echo reports.

James was running out of options and despaired at the pain his death could cause his eight-year-old son, Harrison.

But in a stunning stroke of fortune, his saviour was only the other side of the M62 - LiverpoolCouncil admin worker Leah McDougall.

The 29-year-old mum, from Bootle, had taken the time to sign up to the register of potential stem cell donors on her lunch break at a pop-up stall, organised by blood cancer charity DKSM, the previous year.

James, who despite his Manc heritage is an avid Liverpool FC fan, told staff at the charity that he would be up for meeting his donor, who could have been anyone from a number of European countries using the register.

James, along with his wife Andrea and young Harrison, got the chance to meet Leah for the first time at a DKSM charity gala in London on Wednesday last week (November 6).

James, who says he finally feels like himself after a long period of illness, told the ECHO: "I was just getting chest infections and water infections all the time.

"I am quite a healthy person, and I was in good shape and I knew I should not be getting ill all the time."

He said after a few weeks of tests his was invited to take a bone marrow biopsy and was told the devastating news on his 40th birthday.

The disease meant James' bone marrow was not producing enough white blood cells, but doctors told him a treatment called anti-thymocite globulin (ATG) had a "75% chance" of success.

However, when that failed, fear and doubt began to creep in.

He said: "We are always saying I would get through this, we were thinking I would get better. But I started to think it's not happening, it's not going to be for me, this.

"I thought, I have been good in life, I need some luck. We were having a really hard time.

"My son was four or five then, and it was hard for him having a dad going from playing football with him to being in hospital."

Eventually doctors revealed the only option was for James to have a bone marrow transplant.

The O'Donnell's went through further disappointment when tests on his three siblings revealed none were a match, so the waiting game to find a suitable donor began.

But on a March day in 2017, he got a call to say: "We have got a perfect match, a 10 out of 10."

The operation was a success and after four weeks doctors told James the new bone marrow cells were taking effect.

He said: "We were so lucky to find a donor only about 25 miles away. Some people never find one and we had one on our doorstep."

The powerful emotion of meeting Leah last week is summed up by James: "It was the second best moment of my life after my son being born.

"What she has done means that I can see my son growing up and that he has a father."

Leah did not hesitate to agree to help a total stranger when she was asked by DKSM.

Describing the moment she met James and his family, she told the ECHO: "We were both speechless. When I walked on stage we were just hugging each other for ages.

"It is weird, we felt like we had known each other for years, I felt like I had known him my whole life.

"It just takes five minutes out of your time to sign up to the register; that's like going to the kitchen to make a drink.

"You just think about the impact it is going to have on someone, it is saving someone's life. I feel lucky to have been able to give something back."

James says his family and Leah are planning to meet up again, possibly at a Liverpool FC game.

He said: "Without her, I wouldn't have a future."

DKSM has urged anyone aged 17-55, and in general good health, to sign up to the register here.

Dr Manos Niklolousis, Haematologist at University Hospital Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust, said:"Blood stem cells can be used to treat a wide range of blood cancers and blood disorders and we urgently need more people to come forward as donors.

"Currently, only 2% of the UK population are registered so matching donors with patients isnt easy within a growing multicultural population.

"Many of those in need are unable to find a sibling match and so rely on the generosity of strangers, and a blood stem cell transplant can be some patients only hope of survival.

"As a doctor who treats people with blood cancer or disorders, it is upsetting to know that some patients could have been saved if only more potential donors were registered and available to donate.

"I look forward to the day when there will be a donor for every patient in need."

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Heartbreaking moment dad meets the woman who saved his life - he feared his son would grow up without a father - Manchester Evening News

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Tearful dad meets woman who saved his life and gave him future with his son – Liverpool Echo

By daniellenierenberg

This is the poignant moment a dad and his young family broke down as they met the woman who saved his life.

James O'Donnell, 43, was running out of options after being diagnosed with aplastic anemia, a blood disorder similar to leukaemia, in 2016.

Usual treatments were failing and James was undergoing a blood transfusion every week while battling constant infections.

James, from Burnage in Manchester, feared his luck was out and despaired at the pain his death could cause his eight-year-old son Harrison.

But in a stunning stroke of fortune, his saviour was only the other side of the M62; Liverpool Council admin worker Leah McDougall.

The 29-year-old mum, from Bootle , had taken the time to sign up to the register of potential stem cell donors on her lunch break at a pop-up stall, organised by blood cancer charity DKMS, the previous year.

James, who despite his Manc heritage is an avid Liverpool FC fan, told staff at he charity that he would be up for meeting his donor, who could have been anyone from a number of European countries using the register.

James, along with his wife Andrea and young Harrison, got the chance to meet Leah for the first time at a DKMS charity gala in London on Wednesday last week (November 6).

James, who says he finally feels like himself after a long period of illness, told the ECHO: "I was just getting chest infections and water infections all the time.

"I am quite a healthy person, and I was in good shape and I knew I should not be getting ill all the time."

He said after a few weeks of tests his was invited to take a bone marrow biopsy and was told the devastating news on his 40th birthday.

The disease meant James's bone marrow was not producing enough white blood cells, but doctors told him a treatment called anti-thymocite globulin (ATG) had "75% chance" of success.

However when that failed, fear and doubt began to creep in for James.

He said: "We are always saying I would get through this, we were thinking I would get better. But I started to think it's not happening, it's not going to be for me, this.

"I thought, I have been good in life, I need some luck. We were having a really hard time. My son was four or five then, and it was hard for him having a dad going from playing football with him to being in hospital."

Eventually doctors revealed the only option was for James to have a bone marrow transplant.

The O'Donnells went through further disappointment when tests on his three siblings revealed none were a match, so the waiting game to find a suitable donor began.

But on a March day in 2017, he got a call to say: "We have got a perfect match, a 10 out of 10."

The operation was a success and after four weeks doctors told James the new bone marrow cells were taking effect.

He said: "We were so lucky to find a donor only about 25 miles away. Some people never find one and we had one on our doorstep."

The powerful emotion of meeting Leah last week is summed up by James: "It was the second best moment of my life after my son being born.

"What she has done means that I can see my son growing up and that he has a father."

Leah did not hesitate to agree to help a total stranger when she was asked by DKMS.

Describing the moment she met James and his family, she told the ECHO: "We were both speechless. When I walked on stage we were just hugging each other for ages.

"It is weird, we felt like we had known each other for years, I felt like I had known him my whole life.

"It just takes five minutes out of your time to sign up to the register; that's like going to the kitchen to make a drink.

"You just think about the impact it is going to have on someone, it is saving someone's life. I feel lucky to have been able to give something back."

James says his family and Leah are planning to meet up again, possibly at a Liverpool FC game.

He said: "Without her, I wouldn't have a future."

DKMS has urged anyone aged 17-55, and in general good health, to sign up to the register here .

Dr Manos Niklolousis, Haematologist at University Hospital Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust, said:"Blood stem cells can be used to treat a wide range of blood cancers and blood disorders and we urgently need more people to come forward as donors.

"Currently, only 2% of the UK population are registered so matching donors with patients isnt easy within a growing multicultural population.

"Many of those in need are unable to find a sibling match and so rely on the generosity of strangers, and a blood stem cell transplant can be some patients only hope of survival.

"As a doctor who treats people with blood cancer or disorders, it is upsetting to know that some patients could have been saved if only more potential donors were registered and available to donate. I look forward to the day when there will be a donor for every patient in need."

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Human Heart Cells Alter In Spaceflight But Return To Normal Quickly On Earth – Pragativadi

By daniellenierenberg

New York: Heart cells are altered in space but return to normal within 10 days on Earth, say researchers who examined the cell-level cardiac function and gene expression in human heart cells cultured aboard the International Space Station (ISS) for 5.5 weeks.

Exposure to microgravity altered the expression of thousands of genes, but largely normal patterns of gene expression reappeared within 10 days after returning to Earth, according to the study published in the journal Stem Cell Reports.

To address this question, the research team studied human-induced pluripotent stem cell-derived cardiomyocytes (hiPSC-CMs). They generated hiPSC lines from three individuals by reprogramming blood cells and then differentiated them into heart cells.

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Human Heart Cells Alter In Spaceflight But Return To Normal Quickly On Earth - Pragativadi

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