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The Ins and Outs of Organ Donation – The Wire

By daniellenierenberg

Organ donation involves removing a healthy organ from a donor and transplanting it into the body of a recipient who has a diseased organ that has failed irreversibly. The recipients survival often depends on getting an organ transplant.

There is a large need for organs by people affected with end-stage ailments, like diseases of the liver, lung, heart and kidney. A major obstacle to treating such people is that there arent enough donated organs around the world. In many countries, including in the West, the number of patients in the waiting list for organ transplants has progressively increased compared to the number of donor organs available.

And while the number of donors per million people is very low in many parts of the world, about 20-30 per million, its many times lower than this in India: less than 0.5 donor per million. Experts have estimated that a few lakh organs are required per year in India, although no more than 2-3% of this requirement is really met. The severe shortfall may need more effective propaganda, retrieval and use of donated organs.

There are also personal, religious and cultural barriers that make it hard for people to accept the idea of organ donation. Most religions dont appear to oppose organ donation, but people are often uncertain about these recommendations and so they are reluctant to donate. Judaism and Islam prohibit the desecration of corpses and stress on a complete body, timely rituals and burial within 24 hours after death. People may not prefer to donate organs of their near and dear after death, due to the mutilating effect of dissecting the body and removing its parts.

There are often logistical issues as well. Due to a lack of awareness of the donation procedure and its consequences, most people prefer receiving organs from live, instead of recently deceased, donors.

* * *

Organ donation came to be thanks to advances in surgical procedures that allowed doctors to replace a diseased or dying organ with a healthy foreign organ. These advances reflected the rise of the exchangeability of body parts. That is, clinicians began to view the body as a collection of organs and independent entities, such that they could be removed from one body and placed in another. By contrast, the older and more traditional view of the body regarded it as a complex, indivisible whole interacting with its environment. As the idea of exchangeability gained traction, organs became commodities with market value.

Also read:The Seamy Underbelly of Organ Transplantation in India

The advent of organ transplantation was a landmark in the history of medicine. Researchers had developed transplantation surgeries for small animals such as dogs, pigs and goats well before the 20th century. The organs in the human body that doctors most transplant are the kidney, heart and liver.

Murray and Merrill performed the first kidney transplant in the 1950s, from one monozygotic twin to another. Since the twins were genetically identical, they survived and lived for eight years after the procedure.

The first heart and liver transplants were undertaken in the mid-1960s. Christian Bernard, the famous South African surgeon, performed the first heart transplant in 1967, from a 25-year-old who was brain dead after an accident and to a 50-year-old man suffering from heart failure. In the same year, other doctors performed more than 100 heart transplants around the world, but the recipients in these transplants didnt live for more than a few days after. There were problems related to the health of the transplanted organs and the aftereffects of surgery.

An American surgeon named Thomas Starzl performed the first liver transplant in the mid-1960s. The first patient died immediately and after the surgery; a few more patients who received transplanted organs also died from infections and other illnesses within a few weeks.

Corneal grafts are a very well-known and effective form of organ or tissue donation. The cornea, which is the transparent structure on the front of the eye, consists of multiple layers of cells designed to be transparent. The cornea refracts light towards the eyes lens, located just behind it. Its relatively simpler to transplant cornea because it lacks blood vessels (i.e. since one doesnt need to restore blood vessels in the grafted tissue).

Another advantage is that the cornea is in a state of immune privilege: it is relatively protected from immune responses. So persons who undergo a corneal transplant dont need lifelong treatment with systemic drugs to suppress the immune system.

Corneal donation and transplantation have continuously evolved in theory and practice, and have a high rate of success. Franz Reisinger first attempted corneal grafts in the early 19th century, trying to transplant animal corneas into humans. He failed in repeated attempts. Reisinger also coined the term keratoplasty, which means surgery to the cornea.

Also read:Why Moral Exhortations Alone Will Not Boost Organ Donation in India

Only a few years later, Samuel Bigger, an Irish surgeon, treated a gazelle that had been blinded by a corneal scar by transplanting cornea from another gazelle.

A Viennese ophthalmologist named Edward Zirm performed the first successful corneal graft between two humans in the early 20th century.

* * *

One possible reason why organ transplants often dont have long-term success is the recipient. A person who is already sick due to a failed heart or liver is not likely to respond well to major surgery, and may have difficulty recovering from it. Similarly, an older patient may not be able to withstand the effects of surgery.

Another important factor is the recipients immune system, which could reject the donated organ. In 1979, doctors who just performed a liver transplant used a drug called cyclosporine to dampen the bodys immune response and thus spare the transplanted organ from attack. This occasion was a new step in the history of liver transplants. Cyclosporine improved the survival of over 70% of patients up to at least one year after surgery, and many patients survived for up to five yrs. Doctors have followed up with newer, better drugs to improve patients health outcomes since.

A third issue relates to an ethical question that researchers have flagged: a living donor has to undergo a major surgical procedure to donate an organ, and such procedures carry their own risks. Moreover, close relatives of a patient may be under pressure to agree to donate their organs, so they may not be necessarily free to decide for themselves. Another issue regards commercialisation: its very easy to provide monetary incentives to the poor and convince them to donate an organ in return. In such circumstances, the decision to donate an organ will not have been the result of free choice where it should be.

Such a market for kidneys is all too visible in India, where one finds advertisements for the sale of kidneys with hospitals involved in the business. Often, poor people are ready to donate their organs to make a lakh or two. Apart from theft and the black market for organs, monetary compensation for organs is legal in some parts of the world.

* * *

An alternative to overcome the shortage of organs for transplants is a xenotransplant: transplanting animal organs into humans. The principal animals that can potentially donate to humans are monkeys, since theyre most closely related to humans.

However, due to differences between the sizes of monkey and human organs, researchers have also considered pigs, whose organs are closer in dimensions as well as because pigs are easy to breed. Researchers are currently exploring these procedures in experiments.

Also read:Why Does Spain Lead the World in Organ Donation?

Another alternative for intact organs is stem cells, which scientists can grow in controlled environments, such as in a laboratory, and develop into miniature organs, or organoids. Using bioengineering techniques, they removed cells from an intact organ, such as a lung or trachea, such that the cells retain a skeleton of proteins and carbohydrates. Next, they populate these cells with stem cells and maintained them in a laboratory so that different types of cells grow inside the container. For example, scientists have grown multilayered corneas in a dish using a culture of stem cells and certain biomolecules.

Such advances in preserving and engineering tissues are help plug the gap between the demand for and supply of organs.

* * *

Its very important to preserve and properly store organs to ensure theyre in the best possible condition and retain their nature following transplantation. One particular concern here stems from the time and temperature of storage, which need to be carefully controlled to remain within specific limits depending on the organ and the type of death. Maintaining the right conditions ensures the organ remains viable after the recipient has received it. A heart may be stored for up to four hours, the lungs for up to six hours and the kidneys for longer periods, up to 18 hours.

A critical question to be addressed with regard to organ donation is the distinction between brain death and cardiac, or circulatory, death. A brain-dead patient will still have a functioning heart and may be on life support. However, brain-death means brain function has been completely and irreversibly lost.

For an organ donor, a criterion of either brain death or cardiac death may be taken under the definition of death. Indian law mentions two possibilities. One is in the Registration of Births and Deaths Act and the other, in the Transplantation of Human Organs and Tissues (THOT) Act. The former defines death as the permanent disappearance of all evidence of life at any time after live-birth has taken place. The THOT Act, on the other hand, defines a deceased person as one in whom permanent disappearance of all evidence of life occurs, by reason of brain stem death or in a cardiopulmonary sense, at any time after live-birth has taken place.

In many countries, both forms of death are considered acceptable for organ donation.

Chitra Kannabiranleads research on molecular genetics at the L.V. Prasad Eye Institute, Hyderabad.

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Autologous Stem Cell and Non-Stem Cell Based Therapies Market share, size, opportunities, producers, growth factors by 2026 – Health Opinion

By daniellenierenberg

Autologous Stem Cell and Non-Stem Cell Based Therapies Market Report 2018-2026includes a comprehensive analysis of the present Market. The report starts with the basic Autologous Stem Cell and Non-Stem Cell Based Therapies industry overview and then goes into each and every detail.

Autologous Stem Cell and Non-Stem Cell Based Therapies Market Report contains in depth information major manufacturers, opportunities, challenges, and industry trends and their impact on the market forecast. Autologous Stem Cell and Non-Stem Cell Based Therapies also provides data about the company and its operations. This report also provides information on the Pricing Strategy, Brand Strategy, Target Client, Distributors/Traders List offered by the company.

Description:

Autologous stem-cell transplantation (also known as autogeneic, autogenic, or autogenous stem-cell transplantation or auto-SCT) is the autologous transplantation of stem cellswhich is, transplantation in which the undifferentiated cells or stem cells (cells from which other types of cells develop) are taken from a person, accumulated, and given back to the same person later. Even though it is most often executed by means of hematopoietic stem cells (antecedent of cells that forms blood) in hematopoietic stem cell transplantation, in some cases cardiac cells are used productively to fix the damages due to heart attacks. Stem cell transplantation can be of two types Autologous stem-cell transplantation and allogenic stem cell transplantation. In the later, the recipient and the donor of stem cells are dissimilar people. In a good number of allogeneic transplants, the stem cells are taken from a donor whose cell type matches closely with the patients cell type.

Autologous Stem Cell and Non-Stem Cell Based Therapies Market competition by top manufacturers/players, with Autologous Stem Cell and Non-Stem Cell Based Therapies sales volume, Price (USD/Unit), Revenue (Million USD) and Market Share for each manufacturer/player; the top players including: NeoStem, Inc., Aastrom Biosciences, Fibrocell Science, Inc., Genzyme Corporation, BrainStorm Cell Therapeutics, Regeneus Ltd., and Dendreon Corporation.

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Important Features that are under offer & key highlights of the report:

What all regional segmentation covered? Can the specific country of interest be added?Currently, the research report gives special attention and focus on the following regions:North America (U.S., Canada, Mexico), Europe (Germany, U.K., France, Italy, Russia, Spain etc), South America (Brazil, Argentina etc) & Middle East & Africa (Saudi Arabia, South Africa etc)** One country of specific interest can be included at no added cost. For inclusion of more regional segment quote may vary.

What all companies are currently profiled in the report?The report Contain the Major Key Players currently profiled in this market.** List of companies mentioned may vary in the final report subject to Name Change / Merger etc.

Can we add or profiled new company as per our need?Yes, we can add or profile new company as per client need in the report. Final confirmation to be provided by the research team depending upon the difficulty of the survey.** Data availability will be confirmed by research in case of a privately held company. Up to 3 players can be added at no added cost.

Can the inclusion of additional Segmentation / Market breakdown is possible?Yes, the inclusion of additional segmentation / Market breakdown is possible to subject to data availability and difficulty of the survey. However, a detailed requirement needs to be shared with our research before giving final confirmation to the client.** Depending upon the requirement the deliverable time and quote will vary.

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Autologous Stem Cell and Non-Stem Cell Based Therapies Market Dynamics in the world mainly, the worldwide 2018-2026 Autologous Stem Cell and Non-Stem Cell Based Therapies Market is analyzed across major global regions. CMI also provides customized specific regional and country-level reports for the following areas:

Region Segmentation:

North America (USA, Canada and Mexico)Europe (Germany, France, UK, Russia and Italy)Asia-Pacific (China, Japan, Korea, India and Southeast Asia)South America (Brazil, Argentina, Columbia etc.)Middle East and Africa (Saudi Arabia, UAE, Egypt, Nigeria and South Africa)

Further in the report, the Autologous Stem Cell and Non-Stem Cell Based Therapies market is examined for Sales, Revenue, Price and Gross Margin. These points are analyzed for companies, types, and regions. In continuation with this data, the sale price is for various types, applications and region is also included. The Autologous Stem Cell and Non-Stem Cell Based Therapies industry consumption for major regions is given. Additionally, type wise and application wise figures are also provided in this report.

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In this study, the years considered to estimate the market size of 2018-2026 Autologous Stem Cell and Non-Stem Cell Based Therapies Market are as follows:History Year: 2015-2017Base Year: 2017Estimated Year: 2018Forecast Year 2018 to 2026

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Kind of lacking: Injured Bronco wonders why Canada wont fund spinal surgery – Coast Mountain News

By daniellenierenberg

A hockey player paralyzed in the Humboldt Broncos bus crash says it feels good to be home after spending five weeks in Thailand, where he underwent spinal surgery.

It feels good. I mean I felt that cold, cold wind hit my legs, so Im feeling good. Its good to be back, Ryan Straschnitzki said Sunday night as he wheeled himself into the Calgary airport.

The 20-year-old from Airdrie, Alta., who is paralyzed from the chest down, had an epidural stimulator implanted in his spine while he was in Bangkok. A week later, doctors also injected stem cells above and below his spinal injury to try to reverse some of the damage.

Videos posted by Straschnitzki and his father in Thailand show him straightening a leg. In another, Straschnitzki kicks a ball.

In another clip, while hes strapped into a harness, physiotherapists slowly help him walk with a wheeled machine.

It was incredible. I mean the last time I walked beside my dad was before the accident and before I moved away, said Straschnitzki. So doing that again and just seeing the look in his eyes is motivating to me.

Straschnitzki was one of 13 players injured when a semi truck blew through a stop sign and into the path of his junior hockey teams bus at a rural intersection in Saskatchewan in April 2018.

Sixteen others on the bus were killed.

READ MORE: Paralyzed Humboldt Broncos player to get spinal surgery in Thailand

Tom Straschnitzki said hes not an emotional guy, but watching the progress his son made in Thailand has given him hope.

When I actually saw him move his leg, it just took me back to imagining his last steps going onto that bus on that fateful day. And I was just thinking maybe he can go back on the bus one day, he said.

The surgery can cost up to $100,000 but isnt covered by public health care or insurance, because it has not been approved by Health Canada. The Straschnitzkis say theyre frustrated the treatment isnt available here.

Ryan Straschnitzki hopes his experience might at least get the conversation going.

Our health-care system is kind of lacking in this area for spinal cord injuries and I think its huge that Thailand and some other places are getting this started, he said.

I think if Canada can step in and advance this program, I think itll help a lot of people out.

Tom and Michelle Straschnitzki said they have been flooded with comments and questions about their sons procedure.

They want to try it and ask why doesnt Canada do it? I dont have the answer about Canada but they do it in Thailand and it is not experimental, said Tom Straschnitzki.

Health Canada has said it provides licensed spinal cord stimulators but only for pain relief. A spokesman said it has not received an application to have stimulators used to regain motor skills.

READ MORE: Loss for words Injured Bronco shocked, excited over effect of spinal surgery

Ryan Straschnitzki said he isnt expecting a cure but hopes his implant will restore some muscle movement.

Just getting that feeling of being able to move something that I wasnt able to move before and I know core is a huge part of my disability, so anything below my chest is crucial. And after the programming it really helped, he said.

Straschnitzki is hoping to make the Canadian sledge hockey team and compete in the Olympics. He even took his sled with him to Thailand and sat in it as part of his rehabilitation there.

He said he plans to take a few days off before returning to physiotherapy and hitting the ice again back home.

Bill Graveland, The Canadian Press

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Company Profile for Jasper Therapeutics, Inc – Business Wire

By daniellenierenberg

--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Jasper Therapeutics is a biotechnology company focused on enabling safer conditioning agents and therapeutics to allow for expanded use of curative hematopoietic stem cell transplants and gene therapies. Jasper Therapeutics lead compound, JSP191, is in clinical development as a conditioning antibody that clears hematopoietic stem cells from bone marrow in patients undergoing a stem cell transplant. For more information, please visit us at http://www.jaspertherapeutics.com.

Company:

Jasper Therapeutics, Inc

Headquarters Address:

3000 Sand Hill Road B1-145

Menlo Park, CA

Main Telephone:

1-650-254-6687

Website:

https://jaspertherapeutics.com/

Type of Organization:

Private

Industry:

Biotechnology

Key Executives:

Executive Chairman and Interim Chief Executive Officer: William Lis

Chief Business Officer, Chief Financial Officer: Jeet Mahal

Company Contact

Contact:

Jeet Mahal

Phone:

1-650-254-6687

Email:

jmahal@jaspertherapeutics.com

Public Relations

Contact:

Julie Normart

Phone:

1-415-946-1087

Email:

jnormart@w2ogroup.com

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Howard University Volleyball Player Skips Final Tournament to Make Stem Cell Donation to a Stranger – PEOPLE Great Ideas

By daniellenierenberg

Howard University Volleyball Player Skips Game to Donate Stem Cells | PEOPLE.com Top Navigation Close View image

Howard University Volleyball Player Skips Final Tournament to Make Stem Cell Donation to a Stranger

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Harvard geneticist George Church’s goal: to protect humans from viruses, genetic diseases, and aging – 60 Minutes – CBS News

By daniellenierenberg

Our lives have been transformed by the information age. But what's coming next is likely to be more profound, call it the genetic information age. We have mapped the human genome and in just the last few years we have learned to read and write dna like software. And you're about to see a few breakthroughs-in-waiting that would transform human health. For a preview of this revolution in evolution we met George Church, a world leading geneticist, whose own DNA harbors many eccentricities and a few genes for genius.

We found George Church in here.Cory Smith: Most of these are frozen George. Little bits of George that we have edited all in different tubes.

Church threw himself into his work, literally. His DNA is in many of the experiments in his lab at Harvard Medical School. The fully assembled George Church is 6'5" and 65. He helped pioneer mapping the human genome and editing DNA. Today, his lab is working to make humans immune to all viruses, eliminate genetic diseases, and reverse the effects of time.

Scott Pelley: One of the things your lab is working on is reversing aging.

George Church: That's right.

Scott Pelley: How is that possible?

George Church: Reversing aging is one of these things that is easy to dismiss to say either we don't need it or is impossible or both.

Scott Pelley: Oh, we need it.

George Church: Okay. We need it. That's good. We can agree on that. Well, aging reversal is something that's been proven about eight different ways in animals where you can get, you know, faster reaction times or, you know, cognitive or repair of damaged tissues.

Scott Pelley: Proven eight different ways. Why isn't this available?

George Church: It is available to mice.

In lucky mice, Church's lab added multiple genes that improved heart and kidney function and levels of blood sugar. Now he's trying it in spaniels.

Scott Pelley: So is this gene editing to achieve age reversal?

George Church: This is adding genes. So, it's not really editing genes. It's, the gene function is going down, and so we're boosting it back up by putting in extra copies of the genes.

Scott Pelley: What's the time horizon on age reversal in humans?

George Church: That's in clinical trials right now in dogs. And so, that veterinary product might be a couple years away and then that takes another ten years to get through the human clinical trials.

Human trials of a personal kind made George Church an unlikely candidate to alter human evolution. Growing up in Florida, Church was dyslexic, with attention deficit, and frequently knocked out by narcolepsy.

Scott Pelley: What was it that made you imagine that you could be a scientist?

George Church: The thing that got me hooked was probably the New York World's Fair in 1964. I thought this is the way we should all be living. When I went back to Florida, I said, "I've been robbed," you know? "Where is it all?" So, I said, "Well, if they're not going to provide it, then I'm gonna provide it for myself."

With work and repetition, he beat his disabilities and developed a genius for crystallography, a daunting technique that renders 3D images of molecules through X-rays and math. But in graduate school at Duke, at the age of 20, his mania for the basic structures of life didn't leave time for the basic structure of life.

Scott Pelley: You were homeless for a time.

George Church: Yeah. Briefly.

Scott Pelley: Six months.

George Church: Six months.

Scott Pelley: And where were you sleeping when you were homeless?

George Church: Well, yeah. I wasn't sleeping that much. I was mostly working. I'm narcoleptic. So, I fall asleep sitting up anyway.

His devotion to crystallography was his undoing at Duke.

George Church: I was extremely excited about the research I was doing. And so, I would put in 100-plus hours a week on research and then pretty much didn't do anything else.

Scott Pelley: Not go to class.

George Church: I wouldn't go to class. Yeah.

Duke kicked him out with this letter wishing him well in a field other than biology. But, it turned out, Harvard needed a crystallographer. George Church has been here nearly 40 years. He employs around 100 scientists, about half-and-half men and women.

Scott Pelley: Who do you hire?

George Church: I hire people that are self-selecting, they see our beacon from a distance away. There are a lot of people that are a little, you know, might be considered a little odd. "Neuroatypicals," some of us are called.

Scott Pelley: "Neuroatypical?"

George Church: Right.

Scott Pelley: Unusual brains?

George Church: Right, yeah.

Parastoo Khoshakhlagh: One thing about George that is very significant is that he sees what you can't even see in yourself.

Parastoo Khoshakhlagh and Alex Ng are among the "neuroatypicals." They're engineering human organ tissue.

Cory Smith: I think he tries to promote no fear of failure. The only fear is not to try at all.

Cory Smith's project sped up DNA editing from altering three genes at a time to 13,000 at a time. Eriona Hysolli went to Siberia with Church to extract DNA from the bones of wooly mammoths. She's editing the genes into elephant DNA to bring the mammoth back from extinction.

Eriona Hysolli: We are laying the foundations, perhaps, of de-extinction projects to come.

Scott Pelley: De-extinction.

Eriona Hysolli: Yes.

Scott Pelley: I'm not sure that's a word in the dictionary yet.

Eriona Hysolli: Well, if it isn't, it should be.

Scott Pelley: You know there are people watching this interview who think that is playing God.

George Church: Well, it's playing engineer. I mean, humans have been playing engineer since the dawn of time.

Scott Pelley: The point is, some people believe that you're mucking about in things that shouldn't be disturbed.

George Church: I completely agree that we need to be very cautious. And the more powerful, or the more rapidly-moving the technology, the more cautious we need to be, the bigger the conversation involving lots of different disciplines, religion, ethics, government, art, and so forth. And to see what it's unintended consequences might be.

Church anticipates consequences with a full time ethicist in the lab and he spends a good deal of time thinking about genetic equity. Believing that genetic technology must be available to all, not just those who can afford it.

We saw one of those technologies in the hands of Alex Ng and Parastoo Khoshakhlagh. They showed us what they call "mini-brains," tiny dots with millions of cells each. They've proven that cells from a patient can be grown into any organ tissue, in a matter of days, so drugs can be tested on that patient's unique genome.

Scott Pelley: You said that you got these cells from George's skin? How does that work?

Alex Ng: We have a way to reprogram essentially, skin cells, back into a stem cell state. And we have technologies where now we can differentiate them into tissue such as brain tissue

Scott Pelley: So you went from George's skin cells, turned those into stem cells, and turned those into brain cells.

Alex Ng: Exactly. Exactly.

Scott Pelley: Simple as that.

Organs grown from a patient's own cells would eliminate the problem of rejection. Their goal is to prove the concept by growing full sized organs from Church's DNA.

George Church: It's considered more ethical for students to do experiments on their boss than vice versa and it's good to do it on me rather than some stranger because I'm as up to speed as you can be on the on the risks and the benefits. I'm properly consented. And I'm unlikely to change my mind.

Alex Ng: We have a joke in the lab, I mean, at some point, soon probably, we're going to have more of his cells outside of his body than he has himself.

Church's DNA is also used in experiments designed to make humans immune to all viruses.

George Church: We have a strategy by which we can make any cell or any organism resistant to all viruses by changing the genetic code. So if you change that code enough you now get something that is resistant to all viruses including viruses you never characterized before.

Scott Pelley: Because the viruses don't recognize it anymore?

George Church: They expect a certain code provided by the host that they replicate in. the virus would have to change so many parts of its DNA or RNA so that it can't change them all at once. So, it's not only dead. But it can't mutate to a new place where it could survive in a new host.

Yes, he's talking about the cure for the common cold and the end of waiting for organ transplants. It's long been known that pig organs could function in humans. Pig heart valves are routinely transplanted already. But pig viruses have kept surgeons from transplanting whole organs. Church's lab altered pig DNA and knocked out 62 pig viruses.

Scott Pelley: What organs might be transplanted from a pig to a human?

George Church: Heart, lung, kidney, liver, intestines, various parts of the eye, skin. All these things

Scott Pelley: What's the time horizon on transplanting pig organs into human beings?

George Church: you know, two to five years to get into clinical trials. And then again it could take ten years to get through the clinical trials.

Church is a role model for the next generation. He has co-founded more than 35 startups. Recently, investors put $100 million into the pig organ work. Another Church startup is a dating app that compares DNA and screens out matches that would result in a child with an inherited disease.

George Church: You wouldn't find out who you're not compatible with. You'll just find out who you are compatible with.

Scott Pelley: You're suggesting that if everyone has their genome sequenced and the correct matches are made, that all of these diseases could be eliminated?

George Church: Right. It's 7,000 diseases. It's about 5% of the population. It's about a trillion dollars a year, worldwide.

Church sees one of his own genetic differences as an advantage. Narcolepsy lulls him several times a day. But he wakes, still in the conversation, often, discovering inspiration in his twilight zone.

Scott Pelley: If somebody had sequenced your genome some years ago, you might not have made the grade in some way.

George Church: I mean, that's true. I would hope that society sees the benefit of diversity not just ancestral diversity, but in our abilities. There's no perfect person.

Despite imperfection, Church has co-authored 527 scientific papers and holds more than 50 patents. Proof that great minds do not think alike.

The best science can tell, it was about 4 billion years ago that self-replicating molecules set off the spark of biology. Now, humans hold the tools of evolution, but George Church remains in awe of the original mystery: how chemistry became life.

Scott Pelley: Is the most amazing thing about life, then, that it happened at all?

George Church: It is amazing in our current state of ignorance. We don't even know if it ever happened ever in the rest of the universe. it's awe-inspiring to know that it either happened billions of times, or it never happened. Both of those are mind boggling. It's amazing that you can have such complex structures that make copies of themselves. But it's very hard to do that with machines that we've built. So, we're engineers. But we're rather poor engineers compared to the pseudo engineering that is biological evolution.

Produced by Henry Schuster. Associate producer, Rachael Morehouse. Broadcast associate, Ian Flickinger.

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Get The Gloss Beauty & Wellness Awards 2019: The winners & commended – Get The Gloss

By daniellenierenberg

Each day until Christmas we'll be announcing an award winner - think of it as a virtual advent calendar. Today its the turn of Best Hair Tool - brushes at the ready

Wednesday 27 November saw some of the biggest names in beauty and wellness gather at Get The Gloss' HQ with the sole purpose of whittling down the 450 awards entries we received.

Our judges blazed through the day swatching, spritzing and swirling, putting the products through their paces, and after hours spent poring over the latest and greatest beauty releases, our panel of esteemed judges narrowed down over 450 beauty products to a shortlist and a selection of worthy winners. From cult names to little-known brands, your beauty wish list is about to get a whole lot longer.

Check back here and on our Instagram @getthegloss each day to discover our very worthy winners...

Winner: Manta x Zoe Irwin, 25

More than just a hair brush, this ergonomically shaped tool feels like a mini head massage every time you use it - our judges loved the way it stimulated the scalp in ways that other handheld brushes dont.

Commended: Hair story Brush, 11

To be used in conjunction with our Best Health Hair Saviour winner New Wash, this helps rinse hair product thoroughly, and promotes blood circulation for less hair loss, as well as effectively removing dandruff and protecting the scalp from scratchy fingernails.

Winner: ZENii Stem Cell Renewal Day Cream SPF 30, 70

As opposed to a pure SPF product this is moisturiser combined with a high SPF; its comfortable enough to wear all day, with editorial director Victoria Woodhall saying: It feels lovely, quite amazing and very soft.

While it may be expensive, the hefty price tag comes backed up with powerful ingredients including citrus stem cells and hyaluronic acid.

Commended: Altruist Sunscreen SPF50, 7.50 for 2x100ml

For such a fabulous price point, you really cant go wrong with this. Its lightweight with founder Sarah Vine commenting: Thats very nice, I would actually wear that - big words!

We like the story behind it too - the price point is so reasonable as it was launched by a dermatologist who wanted to make sunscreen accessible to all to reduce skin cancer diagnoses.

Winner: Code8 Highlight HD Palette, 24

For a touch of summer in the chilliest months, you cant go wrong with this two-toned palette, that offers the perfect amount of shimmer.

Commended: Beuti Skincare Pomegranate Glow 3in1 Enzyme Cleanser flash mask, 55.00

We love a multi-purpose product, so this was an instant hit around the judging table. The gel-balm hybrid can be used as a cleanser or a mask for a mini-facial, depending on what youre after.

Winner: WooWoo Tame it! Hair Removal Cream, 6.75

A far cry from the hair removal creams of yesteryear, this has none of the unpleasant scent you might remember and leaves skin soft and smooth. It almost makes hair removal cool - no mean feat!

Highly commended: MegsMenopause Blossom Balm, 10

Targeting vaginal dryness, this intimate skin moisturiser makes menopause a whole lot more comfortable - plus, the bottle is made from 96% recyclable materials.

Winner: Votary Rose Geranium and Apricot Cleansing Oil, 45

When Ateh Jewel says she uses a product every night, you sit up and listen. Something of a cult item in beauty circles, this cleansing oil goes on like velvet and leaves your skin feeling like silk.

Highly commended: Jane Scrivner Nourishing Cleanser, 46

With a creamy and delicious texture, this removes every scrap of makeup without being harsh on the skin.

Highly commended: PAI Light Work Rosehip Cleansing Oil, 36

As the name says, this cleansing oil is light as air, with the rosehip leaving a pleasing glow on the skin.

Winner: 001 Cryopress Ice Facial Massager, 75

After a full-on day of judging, this ice-cold facial massager was a breath of fresh air. Kept between -8 and 2.5 degrees Celcius, rolling this over your face increases blood circulation, tightening, firming and lifting the skin. Get The Gloss founder Susannah Taylor commented how amazing it made her skin feel, and if it's good enough for her...

Highly commended: Hayou Beauty Restorer, 38

This jade facial massage tool might not look like much, but it sure packs a punch. Simply sweep it over your face for a massage that not only improves circulation but can also soothe headaches and release tension. Our editorial director Victoria Woodhall commented that she loves it because it transforms your skin from the inside out.

Winner: Hairstory New Wash, 44

When a product is loved by Jonathan Van Ness, you just know it's going to be good - and our judges were definitely in agreement on this one. Darren Fowler commented that he loved the idea of a biodegradable cleanser that does everything in one - a product to use in place of shampoo which strips excess oil, dirt and styling products, but leaves behind all the goodness your hair needs to be happy and healthy.

Highly commended: L'Oreal Professionnel Vitamino Colour Shampoo, 12.90

Expert judges Cher Webb and Susannah Taylor both already use this in their day-to-day lives, so we were excited to give it a whirl - and we weren't disappointed by this trusted and well-known shampoo. Designed for coloured hair, it leaves locks shiny and vibrant, without weighing it down.

Winner: IT Cosmetics Superhero Mascara, 20

A stalwart in makeup artists' bags, Superhero Mascara boasts serious staying power, with our judges impressed by how a little goes a long way - serious bang for your buck with this one. Judge Cher Webb said she always carried it in her kit.

Highly commended: Lottie London Power Foil, 5.20

Launched in 2014, Lottie London is a relatively new player in the game. This eyeshadow wowed the panel thanks to the highly pigmented formula that creates a three-dimensional illusion on the eyes - Christmas party makeup isn't complete without it. Judge and hairstylist Darren Fowler said he'd love to see this on a model when he's on a shoot.

Watch this space tomorrow for another winner's announcement and follow us on Instagram @getthegloss for updates.

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Spinal Cord – Brain, Spinal Cord, and Nerve Disorders …

By daniellenierenberg

The spinal cord is a long, fragile tubelike structure that begins at the end of the brain stem and continues down almost to the bottom of the spine. The spinal cord consists of nerves that carry incoming and outgoing messages between the brain and the rest of the body. It is also the center for reflexes, such as the knee jerk reflex (see Figure: Reflex Arc: A No-Brainer).

Like the brain, the spinal cord is covered by three layers of tissue (meninges). The spinal cord and meninges are contained in the spinal canal, which runs through the center of the spine. In most adults, the spine is composed of 33 individual back bones (vertebrae). Just as the skull protects the brain, vertebrae protect the spinal cord. The vertebrae are separated by disks made of cartilage, which act as cushions, reducing the forces generated by movements such as walking and jumping. The vertebrae and disks of cartilage extend the length of the spine and together form the vertebral column, also called the spinal column.

A column of bones called vertebrae make up the spine (spinal column). The vertebrae protect the spinal cord, a long, fragile structure contained in the spinal canal, which runs through the center of the spine. Between the vertebrae are disks composed of cartilage, which help cushion the spine and give it some flexibility.

Like the brain, the spinal cord is covered by three layers of tissue (meninges).

Spinal nerves: Emerging from the spinal cord between the vertebrae are 31 pairs of spinal nerves. Each nerve emerges in two short branches (roots):

One at the front (motor or anterior root) of the spinal cord

One at the back (sensory or posterior root) of the spinal cord

The motor roots carry commands from the brain and spinal cord to other parts of the body, particularly to skeletal muscles.

The sensory roots carry information to the brain from other parts of the body.

Cauda equina: The spinal cord ends about three fourths of the way down the spine, but a bundle of nerves extends beyond the cord. This bundle is called the cauda equina because it resembles a horses tail. The cauda equina carries nerve impulses to and from the legs.

Like the brain, the spinal cord consists of gray and white matter. The butterfly-shaped center of the cord consists of gray matter. The front wings (also called horns) contain motor nerve cells (neurons), which transmit information from the brain or spinal cord to muscles, stimulating movement. The back horns contain sensory nerve cells, which transmit sensory information from other parts of the body through the spinal cord to the brain. The surrounding white matter contains columns of nerve fibers that carry sensory information to the brain from the rest of the body (ascending tracts) and columns that carry motor impulses from the brain to the muscles (descending tracts).

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Stem Cells – The Hastings Center

By daniellenierenberg

By Insoo Hyun

Stem cells are undifferentiated cells that have the capacity to renew themselves and to specialize into various cell types, such as blood, muscle, and nerve cells. Embryonic stem cells, derived from five-day-old embryos, eventually give rise to all the different cells and organ systems of the embryo. Embryonic stem cells are pluripotent, because they are capable of differentiating along each of the three germ layers of cells in the embryo, as well as producing the germ line (sperm and eggs). The three germ layers are the ectoderm (skin, nerves, brain), the mesoderm (bone, muscle), and the endoderm (lungs, digestive system).

During later stages of human development, minute quantities of more mature stem cells can be found in most tissue and organ systems, such as bone marrow, the skin, and the gut. These are somatic stem cells, responsible for renewing and repairing the bodys specialized cells. Although the lay public often refers to them as adult stem cells, researchers prefer to call them multipotent because they are less versatile than pluripotent stem cells, and because they are present from the fetal stage of development and beyond. Multipotent stem cells can only differentiate into cells related to the tissue or organ systems from which they originated for instance, multipotent blood stem cells in bonemarrow can develop into different types of blood cells, but not into nerve cells or heart cells.

While multipotent stem cell research has been around for nearly 50 years and has led to clinical therapies for leukemia and other blood disorders, the field of human embryonic stem cell research is still relatively new, and basic discoveries have yet to be directly transitioned into clinical treatments. Human embryonic stem cells were first isolated and maintained in culture in 1998 by James Thomson and colleagues at the University of Wisconsin. Since then, more than a thousand different isolateslines of self-renewing embryonic stem cellshave been created and shared by researchers worldwide.

The main ethical and policy issues with stem cells concern the derivation and use of embryonic stem cells for research. A vocal minority of Americans objects to the destruction of embryos that occurs when stem cells are derived. Embryonic stem cell research is especially controversial for those who believe that five-day-old preimplantation human embryos should not be destroyed no matter how valuable the research may be for society.

To bypass this ethical controversy, the Presidents Council on Bioethics recommended in 2005 that alternative sources of pluripotent stem cells be pursued. Some alternatives have been developed, most notably, the induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells human skin cells and other body cells reprogrammed to behave like embryonic cells. But embryonic stem cell research will remain needed because there are some questions only they have the potential to answer.

Embryonic stem cells are necessary for several aims of scientific and biomedical research. They include addressing fundamental questions in developmental biology, such as how primitive cells differentiate into more specialized cells and how different organ systems first come into being. By increasing our knowledge of human development, embryonic stem cells may also help us better understand the causes of fetal deformations.

Other important applications lie in the areas of disease research and targeted drug development. By deriving and studying embryonic or other pluripotent stem cells that are genetically-matched to diseases such as Parkinsons disease and juvenile diabetes, researchers are able to map out the developmental course of complex medical conditions to understand how, when, and why diseased specialized cells fail to function properly in patients. Such disease-in-a-dish model systems provide researchers with a powerful new way to study genetic diseases. Furthermore, researchers can aggressively test the safety and efficacy of new, targeted drug interventions on tissue cultures of living human cells derived from disease-specific embryonic stem cells. This method of testing can reduce the risks associated with human subjects research.

One possible way of deriving disease-specific stem cells is through a technique called somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT), otherwise known as research cloning. By replacing the DNA of an unfertilized egg with the DNA of a cell from a patients body, researchers are able to produce embryonic stem cells that are genetically-matched to the patient and his or her particular disease. SCNT, however, is technically challenging and requires the collection of high-quality human eggs from female research volunteers, who must be asked to undergo physically burdensome procedures to extract eggs.

A much more widespread and simpler technique for creating disease-specific stem cells was pioneered in 2006 by Shinya Yamanaka and colleagues in Kyoto, Japan. They took mouse skin cells and used retroviruses to insert four genes into them to to create iPS cells. In 2007, teams led by Yamanaka, James Thomson, and George Daley each used similar techniques to create human iPS cells. The iPS cell approach is promising because disease-specific stem cells could be created using skin or blood samples from patients and because, unlike SCNT, it does not require the procurement of human eggs for research.

However, despite these advances, scientists do not believe iPS cells can replace human embryonic stem cells in research. For one, embryonic stem cells must be used as controls to assess the behavior and full scientific potential of iPS cells. Furthermore, iPS cells may not be able to answer some important questions about early human development. And safety is a major issue for iPS cell research aimed at clinical applications, since the cell reprogramming process can cause harmful mutations in the stem cells, increasing the risk of cancer. In light of these and other concerns, iPS cells may perhaps prove to be most useful in their potential to expand our overall understanding of stem cell biology, the net effect of which will provide the best hope of discovering new therapies for patients.

Many who oppose embryonic stem cell research believe for religious or other personal reasons that all preimplantation embryos have a moral standing equal to living persons. On the other hand, those who support embryonic stem cell research point out that not all religious traditions grant full moral standing to early-stage human embryos.

According to Jewish, Islamic, Hindu, and Buddhist traditions, as well as many Western Christian views, moral standing arrives much later during the gestation process, with some views maintaining that the fetus must first reach a stage of viability where it would be capable of living outside the womb. Living in a pluralistic society such as ours, supporters argue, means having to tolerate differences in religious and personal convictions over such theoretical matters as when, during development, moral standing first appears.

Other critics of embryonic stem cell research believe that all preimplantation embryos have the potential to become full-fledged human beings and that they should never have this potential destroyed. In response, stem cell supporters argue that it is simply false that all early-stage embryos have the potential for complete human life many fertility clinic embryos are of poor quality and therefore not capable of producing a pregnancy (although they may yield stem cells). Similarly, as many as 75% to 80% of all embryos created through intercourse fail to implant. Furthermore, no embryos have the potential for full human life until they are implanted in a womans uterus, and until this essential step is taken an embryos potential exists only in the most abstract and hypothetical sense.

Despite the controversies, embryonic stem cell research continues to proceed rapidly around the world, with strong public funding in many countries. In the U.S., federal money for embryonic stem cell research is available only for stem cell lines that are on the National Institutes of Health stem cell registry. However, no federal funds may be used to derive human embryonic stem cell lines; NIH funds may only be used to study embryonic stem cells that were derived using other funding sources.

Despite the lack of full federal commitment to funding embryonic stem cell research in the U.S., there are wide-ranging national regulatory standards. The National Academy of Sciences established guidelines in 2005 for the conduct of human embryonic stem cell research. (See Resources.) According to these guidelines, all privately and publicly funded scientists working with embryonic stem cells should have their research proposals approved by local embryonic stem cell research oversight (ESCRO) committees. ESCRO committees are to include basic scientists, physicians, ethicists, legal experts, and community members to look at stem-cell-specific issues relating to the proposed research. These committees are also to work with local ethics review boards to ensure that the donors of embryos and other human materials are treated fairly and have given their voluntary informed consent to stem cell research teams. Although these guidelines are voluntarily, universities and other research centers have widely accepted them.

At the global level, in 2016 the International Society for Stem Cell Research (ISSCR) released a comprehensive set of professional guidelines for human stem cell research, spanning both bench and clinical stem cell research. (See Resources.) Unlike the NAS guidelines, the ISSCR guidelines go beyond American standards, adding, for example, the recommendation that stem cell lines be banked and freely distributed to researchers around the world to facilitate the fields progress on just and reasonable terms.The potential for over-commercialization and restrictive patenting practices is a major problem facing the stem cell field today, which may delay or reduce the broad public benefit of stem cell research. The promise of broad public benefit is one of thejustifying conditions for conducting stem cell research; without the real and substantial possibility for public benefit, stem cell research loses one of its most important moral foundations.

However, providing useful stem-cell-based therapies in the future is not a simple proposition, either. Developing a roadmap to bring stem cell research into the clinic will involve many complex steps, which the new ISSCR guidelines help address. They include:

These and other difficult issues must be sorted out if stem cell research in all its forms is to fulfill its promise.

STEM CELL GLOSSARY

Newer ethical issues in stem cell research go far beyond the embryo debate, since they encompass all stem cell types, not just human embryonic stem cells, and because they involve human subjects who, despite what one may think about the moral status of preimplantation embryos, are unequivocally moral persons. No other emerging issue better encapsulates the above concern than the growing phenomenon of stem cell tourism. At present, stem cell-based therapies are the clinical standard of care for only afew conditions, such as hematopoietic stem cell transplants for leukemia and epithelial stem cell-based treatments for burns and corneal disorders. Unfortunately, some unscrupulous clinicians around the world are exploiting patients hopes by purporting to provide for large sums of money effective stem cell therapies for many other conditions. These so-called stem cell clinics advance claims about their proffered stem cell therapies without credible scientific rationale, transparency, oversight, or patient protections.

The administration of unproven stem cell interventions outside of carefully regulated research protocols endangers patients and jeopardizes the legitimate progress of translational stem cell scientific research. Patients who travel for unproven stem cell therapies put themselves at risk of physical and financial harm.

The ISSCR guidelines are a good point for thinking about this important problem. The guidelines allow for exceptional circumstances in which clinicians might attempt medically innovative care in a very small number of seriously ill patients, subject to stringent oversight criteria. These criteria include: independent peer review of the proposed innovative procedure and its scientific rationale; institutional accountability; rigorous informed consent and close patient monitoring; transparency; timely adverse event reporting; and a commitment by clinician-scientists to move to a formal clinical trial in a timely manner after experience with at most a few patients. By juxtaposing some current stem cell clinics against the standards outlined in the ISSCR guidelines, one may easily identify some clinics shortcomings and call into question the legitimacy of their purported claims of providing innovative care to patients.

Moving beyond past debates about embryo status to issues concerning the uses of all varieties of stem cells, one can begin to focus the bioethical discourse on areas that have a much broader consensus base of shared values, such as patient and research subject protections and justice. Justice may also call on regulatory and oversight bodies to include a greater involvement of community and patient advocates in the oversight of research. Dealing with the bioethics of stem cell research demands that we wrestle with these and other tough questions.

Insoo Hyun, PhD, is an associate professor of bioethics at Case Western Reserve University.

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Antibiotic in human skin can beat superbugs. Now scientists have a way to put it to use – ThePrint

By daniellenierenberg

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New Delhi: A team of scientists in Bengaluru has claimed that it was able to stimulate skin cells to secrete naturally occurring antibiotics that can help treat superbugs or drug-resistant bacteria.

Antibiotic drugs used to treat infections are increasingly becoming ineffective globally, with bacteria having developed resistance to them over time.

According to the latest study published last monthin journal Cell Reports, scientists have discovered a way to stimulate skin cells to secrete antimicrobial peptides (AMPs).

AMPs target and kill bacteria in such variable ways that few bacteria ever become resistant to these molecules. This makes them uniquely suited to treating antibiotic-resistant bacteria, also called superbugs.

So far, artificially creating effective AMPs for use as antibiotic had not been possible.The new discovery has the potential to treat and prevent infections for post-surgery wounds, especially in diabetic patients and those with weakened immune systems, the researchers said in a statement Thursday.

The team comprises scientists from the National Centre for Biological Sciences, an affiliate of the Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, the Institute for Stem Cell Science and Regenerative Medicine (inStem) and the R&D department of Unilever, all based in Bengaluru.

Also read: Worlds most-isolated city catches NASAs attention as it hunts for innovative tech

To develop new strategies to deal with antimicrobial resistance, scientists from inStem and Unilever probed the cellular mechanisms that regulate the release of AMPs.

Apart from their role as natural antibiotics, AMPs are also known to be involved in wound healing.

Amitabha Majumdar, a researcher at Unilever, hypothesised that the same machinery used to release AMPs during wound-healing could be harnessed to control AMP release from skin cells for treating or preventing infections.

To test this, Majumdar worked with Colin Jamora, a researcher at inStems Centre for Inflammation and Tissue Homeostasis, whose group works extensively on the mechanisms of wound-healing in skin.

The team found a new signalling pathway for long-term release of AMPs from skin cells. Usually, AMPs are released to fight off bacterial infections when direct contact between skin epidermal cells and bacteria occurs. This process is triggered by a reduction in the levels of a protein called caspase-8.

The scientists found that using molecular techniques to reduce caspase-8 is enough to trigger the release of stored AMP from skin cells.

Their study showed that just by modulating caspase-8 levels in the skin, AMP release can be controlled to prevent a whole spectrum of infections.

This may be especially useful for diabetics and patients with weakened immune systems who are highly susceptible to bacterial, yeast, fungal, and viral infections in post-surgery wounds.

Over the last century, bacteria have evolved so much to protect themselves against antibiotics that the World Health Organisation (WHO) fears humankind may soon slip back into a situation similar to the pre-antibiotic era.

According to a WHO report, the death toll caused by antimicrobial resistance is estimated to rise to 10 million annually by 2050 with India carrying one of the largest burdens of drug-resistant pathogens worldwide.

Also read: Gene editing might alter our DNA, but at the cost of our humanity

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If you have no idea where to start with your skin care, these new kits make it dummy-proof – Well+Good

By daniellenierenberg

Putting together a skin-care routine from scratch can be a daunting task. Usually, it involves a lot of scrolling through websites wondering where to begin. According to dermatologists, the basics of a good routine include a cleanser, an antioxidant serum, a retinol, a moisturizer, and a sunscreen. Even with that in mind, putting together a multi-step regimen can often feel overwhelming, especially if youre new to the game.

The good news? The holiday shopping season means skin-care kits that are filled with the products you need for a lot less. From cleansers to serums to moisturizers, these babies have got it alljust add some sunscreen into the mix and youll be good to go, all with the single click of the add to cart button. Shop the best skin-care sets below, and get ready to have your skin-care routine down pat.

Achieve the #topshelf of your dreams with this set, which puts mini versions of the brands cult faves into one place. Youll get a Milky Jelly Cleanser, Priming Rich Moisturizer, Future Dew and Super Bounce Serums, andtwo Balm Dotcoms. Your Instagram feed (and your skin) will look lit.

Every serum your skin could possibly need all in one place. Theres the cult-fave Good Genes for chemical exfoliation, C.E.O. Glow Vitamin C for brightening, and A+ High Dose Retinol for stimulating cell turnover. Its also got an eye cream and a moisturizer, so all you need to bring to a party is a cleanser (which derms say you can totally get at the drugstore) and youll be good to go.

This deal seems almost too good to be true. Its gotallof our favorite Fresh products, including the cleanser and lip balm that half of our editors swear by, plus a moisturizer, face mask, and eye cream. You skin will slurp nourishing ingredients like rose, lotus, and black tea right up, and your lips will feel kissable well past New Years Eve.

A great skin-care routine has both exfoliating and hydrating elements, which this kit offers in spades. Theres a cleanser to help prep your skin, AHA Facial Radiance Pads to slough away dead skin cells, and a hydrating hyaluronic acid serum and colloidal oatmeal cream to keep skin moisturized. To keep your lips from feeling left out, theres also a petroleum lip balm thatll soothe away any chapping.

Get your hands on Sephoras seven favorite skin-care products, all in one place. Its a great way to discover clean brands you may not have tried yet by way of their bestselling products, which do everything from exfoliate to hydrate to soothe your skin. A few of my personal favorite picks from this kit? Biossance Squalane + Vitamin C Rose Oil, Farmacy Honeymoon Glow AHA resurfacing night serum, and Youth to the People Superberry Hydrate + Glow Dream Mask.

The best part about The Ordinary? The products are as affordable as they are efficaciousall year round. The Daily Set has everything your dry skin needs, including a hydrating gentle cleanser, a 2 percent hyaluronic acid serum, and an ultra-hydrating moisturizer.

If youve heard everyone in your group chat raving about Drunk Elephant for the last few years and have yet to try it for yourself, consider this your best point of entry. This set includes travel-sized versions of the brands best sellers, including the C-Firma serum, T.L.C. Framboos Glycolic Night Serum, and Protini Polypeptide Cream (plus, my personal favorite sunscreen, Umbra Tinte Physical Daily Defense SPF 30). Its a great way to sample a huge selection of the line before deciding which products are investing in full sizes of. Or, if youre already a Drunk Elephant devotee, this is a great way to keep your routine with you everywhere you go.

Protecting your skin barrier is critical to healthy skin, and thats the priority of this full-service set. The gentle cleanser will get rid of makeup and grime, and the lotion and lip balm help seal in moisture. Theres also an antioxidant treatment that reduces redness and blotchiness, plus irritation-soothing creams for your body and hands.

This line is the K-beauty holy grail for hydration, and is perfect for combatting the effects that cold weather has on your skin during the early months of the year. Each of the productsfrom the cream cleanser to the essence to the moisture cream to the sleep maskare all formulated with ingredients to lock in moisture and keep your complexion from feeling parched. Plus, the Lip Sleeping Mask is a treat for chapped lips at all hours of the day and night.

Ask any derm the holy-grail serums that everyone should have in their routine, and theyll tell you Vitamin C, hyaluronic acid, and retinol. This kit has all three of them, plus a caffeine-infused eye cream that will make you look instantly more awake.

As far as skin care goes, you really cant go wrong with a dermatologist-developed line. Our editors are huge fans of all things from Dr. Dennis Gross, and this kit will allow you to try his cosmetically elegant products like a ferulic and retinol overnight serum and eye cream, a vitamin C and collagen serum, and a best-in-class AHA/BHA Peel. As a whole, the set is meant to target fine lines and wrinkles, all while hydrating and brightening in the process.

Hardly surprising, but a lot of Dermstores favorite products areour favorite products, too. In this kit, youll receive picks from Naturopathica, SkinMedica, Bioderma, Boscia, and First Aid Beauty, among others, that make up an entire multi-step regimen. If youre not quite sure about going all-in on a single brand, this is a great way to try a lot of different things all at the same time for aseriouslydiscounted price.

Finding the right routine for acne can be a lot of trial and error, but this medical-grade kit does a lot of the legwork for you. Its got all of the best acne-fighting ingredients like Benzoyl Peroxide and Retinol, plus a niacinamide-packed moisturizer to reduce any irritation from the treatments.

A fan-favorite brand among both French girls and beauty editors, this oh-so-simple three step routine is perfect for anyone looking to streamline what theyre doing to their skin. Theres a micellar water, which acts as a gentle cleanser, a sensitive-skin-friendly moisturizer, and a puffiness-reducing eye cream to top it all off.

This kit has everything you need for cleansing, hydrating and brightening your skin, the combination of which will leave it looking radiant. Theres a stem cell cleanser, three different serums that have hyaluronic acid and vitamins C, A, and E, plus a mask for nights when your face needs a little bit more love.

To help brighten skin, you first need to slough away the old, dead skin cells that have been accumulating on your complexion. Start with a lactic acid-spiked resurfacing treatment and then slather on the potent vitamin C-laced brightening serum. Top it all off with pure argan oil (the ingredient the brand is known for) to moisturize it.

Heres what a dermatologists skin-care routine looks like:

Looking to buy beauty gifts for someone else this holiday season? Consider this hi-def makeup mirror, or one of the products our readers swear by for bringing dry hair back to life.

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MaaT Pharma Announces the Presentation of Positive Data with Its Lead Microbiome Biotherapeutic in Intestinal-Predominant Acute…

By daniellenierenberg

LYON, France--(BUSINESS WIRE)--MaaT Pharma announced today that leading hemato-oncological experts presented clinical data on the compassionate use of MaaT Pharmas lead full-ecosystem microbiome restoration biotherapeutic, MaaT013. The data included eight patients that developed gastrointestinal-predominant, acute Graft-versus-Host-Disease (GI aGvHD) after receiving an allogeneic Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation (allo-HSCT) to treat their hematologic malignancies. All patients were positively impacted by the MaaT013 treatment, with three patients achieving complete response. GvHD, a condition where the transplant donors immune cells attack the patients tissues, is one of the most serious complications of allo-HSCT, and its acute GI form is fatal in most cases. MaaT013 features a consistently high diversity and richness of microbial species in their natural environment. It aims to restore the symbiotic relationship between microbes in the gut and the immune system of the patient to correct the responsiveness and tolerance (homeostasis) of immune functions and thereby contain GI GvHD. The results were presented in a poster presentation on December 7, 2019 during the 61st American Society of Hematology (ASH) Annual Meeting and Exposition held in Orlando, Florida.

The GI aGvHD patients who were treated with MaaT013 had a very poor prognosis with no other therapeutic options. The results following MaaT013 administration showed a positive impact on all patients, commented Professor Mohamad Mohty, MD, PhD, Head of the Hematology and Cellular Therapy Department at Sorbonne University, Saint Antoine Hospital in Paris. The most impressive results were seen in those patients who achieved a complete response and who were able to taper and stop using steroids and other immunosuppressants without relapse of gastrointestinal symptoms.

In the presented evaluation, eight patients with a median age of 67 were treated for classical aGvHD, late-onset aGvHD or aGvHD with overlap syndrome that were either steroid-resistant or steroid-dependent following stem cell transplantation. These patients had previously been treated with and failed up to five lines of systemic therapy for aGvHD. Each patient received at least one and up to three doses of MaaT013 and treatment response was evaluated seven days after each administration and on day 28 after the first dose. Based on the best response to the treatment, all eight patients experienced at least a partial response with three patients achieving complete response, two patients with very good partial response and three patients with partial response. Overall, the data demonstrated that reintroduction of a full-ecosystem microbiota provided therapeutic effect and was tolerated in a satisfactory manner in these patients.

Herv Affagard, Co-founder and CEO of MaaT Pharma added, We provided our cGMP-manufactured lead biologic drug, MaaT013, to hospitals as part of a compassionate use program to give GI GvHD patients a therapeutic option where there are no other available treatments after steroids and additional lines of treatment. These findings indicate that reestablishing the gut microbiome improved outcomes in these patients.

Moreover, MaaT Pharma is currently conducting the HERACLES Phase II clinical trial (NCT03359980) to evaluate the safety and efficacy of MaaT013 in steroid-refractory, GI aGvHD patients, with more than half of the patients enrolled.

To date, a total of 46 patients with GI GvHD have been treated with MaaT013, including patients under compassionate use and patients enrolled in the Phase II clinical trial. MaaT Pharma is actively developing an oral formulation of MaaT013 (a capsule, MaaT033) to provide easier administration for patients while delivering a similar effect of regenerating the microbial ecosystem with the goal of restoring immune homeostasis in the gut.

The poster can be viewed on the companys website under News.

About HERACLES

The HERACLES study is a multi-center, single-arm, open-label study, enrolling 32 patients to evaluate the efficacy and safety of MaaT Pharmas lead microbiome restoration drug candidate, MaaT013, in steroid-resistant, gastrointestinal-predominant aGvHD patients. Acute GvHD is a serious, often fatal syndrome typically involving the gut, skin, and liver. Treatments up to now focused largely on suppressing the immune reaction that is induced by the donor cells derived from the hematopoietic stem cell graft reacting against the host. These strategies have remained clinically unsuccessful in most cases, with mortality rates around 80% after twelve months in steroid-resistant cases. Patients with hematological malignancies receive multiple courses of chemotherapy, antibiotics, and ultimately conditioning before HSCT, which are known to severely impact the gut microbial composition.

About MaaT013

MaaT013 is the first full-ecosystem, off-the-shelf, reproducible, enema formulation manufactured using MaaT Pharmas integrated Microbiome Restoration Biotherapeutic (MMRB) platform. The product has a stability of up to 24 months and is characterized by a high diversity and consistent richness of microbial species derived from pooled healthy donors and manufactured at the companys centralized European cGMP production facility. MaaT013 has been granted Orphan Drug Designation by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the European Medicines Agency (EMA) and is already being administered in compassionate use.

About MaaT Pharma

MaaT Pharma, a clinical stage company, has established the most complete approach to restoring patient-microbiome symbiosis to improve survival outcomes in life-threatening diseases. Committed to treating blood cancers and Graft-versus-Host-Disease, a serious complication of allogeneic stem cell transplantation, MaaT Pharma has already achieved proof of concept in acute myeloid leukemia patients. Supporting the further expansion of our pipeline into improving outcomes of immunotherapy in solid tumors, we have built a powerful discovery and analysis platform, GutPrint, to evaluate drug candidates, determine novel disease targets and identify biomarkers for microbiome-related conditions. Our biotherapeutics are produced under the strictest cGMP manufacturing and quality control process to safely deliver the full diversity and functionality of the microbiome. MaaT Pharma benefits from the commitment of world-leading scientists and established relationships with regulators to spearhead microbiome treatment integration into clinical practice.

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With another $26M, Japan’s Heartseed aims to advance iPSC-derived regenerative medicine for heart failure – BioWorld Online

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With another $26M, Japan's Heartseed aims to advance iPSC-derived regenerative medicine for heart failure  BioWorld Online

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Meditation increases blood flow in the heart, PET scans show – Health Imaging

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Schneider noted that prior research has established psychosocial stress as a risk factor for coronary heart disease. However, stress reduction techniques arent typically included in cardiac rehabilitation.

In their study, the researchers randomly divided 56 patients into four groups: cardiac rehab, transcendental meditation, transcendental meditation plus cardiac rehabilitation or normal care.

According to the research, 37 patients completed the study. Of that group, patients who practiced transcendental meditation and cardiac rehabilitation increased their myocardial blood flow by 20.7%. PET scans also revealed a 12.8% increase in those who completed mediation alone. Cardiac rehab improved flow by 5.8%, while usual treatment decreased that metric by 10.3%.

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CALQUENCE Significantly Prolonged the Time Patients Lived Without Disease Progression or Death in Previously Untreated Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia -…

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WILMINGTON, Del.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--AstraZeneca today presented results from the interim analysis of the Phase III ELEVATE TN trial, showing that CALQUENCE (acalabrutinib) combined with obinutuzumab or as monotherapy significantly improved progression-free survival (PFS) compared to chlorambucil plus obinutuzumab, a standard chemo-immunotherapy treatment, in patients with previously untreated chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL).

The Independent Review Committee (IRC)-assessed results were presented at the 2019 American Society of Hematology Annual Meeting and Exhibition in Orlando, US. At a median follow-up of 28.3 months, CALQUENCE in combination with obinutuzumab or as a monotherapy significantly reduced the risk of disease progression or death by 90% and 80%, respectively, vs. chlorambucil plus obinutuzumab.

In an exploratory analysis, CALQUENCE in combination or alone demonstrated consistent PFS improvements across most pre-specified subgroups of patients with high-risk disease characteristics, including the unmutated immunoglobulin heavy-chain variable gene (IGHV), del(11q) and complex karyotype. Overall, the safety and tolerability profile of CALQUENCE observed in the ELEVATE TN trial was consistent with its known profile.

Jos Baselga, Executive Vice President, Oncology R&D said: On the heels of approvals in the US, Australia and Canada, these full results provide further evidence that CALQUENCE, as a new treatment option for patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia, demonstrates remarkable efficacy and a favorable tolerability profile. These results also provide, for the first time, post-hoc analysis data exploring the potential progression-free survival benefit of adding obinutuzumab to a BTK inhibitor versus BTK inhibitor monotherapy in a randomized trial.

Dr. Jeff Sharman, Director of Research at Willamette Valley Cancer Institute, Medical Director of Hematology Research for The US Oncology Network, and a lead author of the ELEVATE TN trial, said: In the detailed results from the ELEVATE TN trial comparing CALQUENCE to a commonly used chemo-immunotherapy treatment regimen, CALQUENCE demonstrated a clinically meaningful improvement in progression-free survival, while maintaining its known tolerability and safety profile. These are encouraging results for a patient population that is known to face multiple comorbidities, and where tolerability is a critical factor in their treatment.

Summary of key efficacy results as assessed by IRC from the ELEVATE TN trial at median follow-up of 28.3 months:

Efficacy measure

CALQUENCE plusobinutuzumab

N = 179

CALQUENCEmonotherapyN = 179

Chlorambucil plusobinutuzumabN = 177

PFS

Number of events (%)

14 (7.8)

26 (14.5)

93 (52.5)

Median (95% CI), months

NR(NE, NE)

NR(34.2, NE)

22.6(20.2, 27.6)

HR (95% CI)

0.10 (0.06, 0.17)

0.20 (0.13, 0.30)

-

p-value

<0.0001

<0.0001

-

Estimated PFS at 24 months, %

93

87

47

ORR

ORR, n (%)(95% CI)

168 (93.9)(89.3, 96.5)

153 (85.5)(79.6, 89.9)

139 (78.5)(71.9, 83.9)

p-value

<0.0001

=0.0763

-

OS

Number of events (%)

9 (5.0)

11 (6.1)

17 (9.6)

Median (95% CI), months

NR (NE, NE)

NR (NE, NE)

NR (NE, NE)

HR (95% CI)

0.47 (0.21, 1.06)

0.60 (0.28, 1.27)

-

p-value

=0.0577

=0.1556

-

CI, Confidence Interval; NR, Not Reached; NE, Not Evaluable; HR, Hazard Ratio; ORR, Overall Response Rate, OS, Overall Survival

Adverse events (AEs) led to treatment discontinuation in 11.2% of patients treated with CALQUENCE in combination with obinutuzumab and 8.9% of patients treated with CALQUENCE monotherapy versus 14.1% of patients treated with chlorambucil plus obinutuzumab.

With over two years of follow-up, 79% of patients in both the CALQUENCE-containing arms remain on CALQUENCE as a monotherapy. In the CALQUENCE combination arm (n=178), the most common AEs of any grade (30%) included headache (39.9%), diarrhea (38.8%) and neutropenia (31.5%). In the CALQUENCE monotherapy arm (n=179), the most common AEs of any grade (30%) included headache (36.9%) and diarrhea (34.6%). In the chlorambucil plus obinutuzumab arm (n=169), the most common AEs of any grade (30%) included neutropenia (45.0%), infusion-related reaction (39.6%) and nausea (31.4%).

Other AEs of clinical interest (%)1

CALQUENCE plusobinutuzumabN = 178

CALQUENCEmonotherapyN = 179

Chlorambucil plusobinutuzumabN = 169

Any

Grade 3

Any

Grade 3

Any

Grade 3

Atrial fibrillation

3.4%

0.6%

3.9%

0%

0.6%

0%

Major bleeding

2.8%

1.7%

1.7%

1.7%

1.2%

0%

Hypertension

7.3%

2.8%

4.5%

2.2%

3.6%

3.0%

Infection

69.1%

20.8%

65.4%

14.0%

43.8%

8.3%

SPM excluding NMSC

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3-year-old needs bone marrow transplant to survive, says UAE-based father – Gulf News

By daniellenierenberg

mohammad hassan 3 years and two months Image Credit:

Dubai: The father of a three-year-old boy in Dubai, whose only hope for survival is a bone marrow transplant, is desperately appealing for help.

Hafeez Khan, father of Mohammad Hassan, said the boy who is suffering from acute myeloid leukaemia (AML), needs Rs4.8 million (Pakistani) or Dh114,000 for his treatment, which includes one-two cycles of chemotherapy and a bone marrow transplant, in Pakistan.

Hassan, who has not been able to attend school as he has been in and out of hospitals in Dubai and Pakistan, was first diagnosed with AML when he was only a year and a half. He remained under treatment at a Dubai hospital for nearly a year until October 2018.

After a brief remission, he developed high fever and body pain on October 17 this year. When he did not respond to any regular medications, we took him to a Dubai hospital where his AML relapse was confirmed, said the father.

He said investigations revealed that Hassan had a soft tissue mass in his sinus which was diagnosed as a chloroma, a solid collection of leukemic cells occurring outside the bone marrow.

Khan, who works as a site engineer for a Dubai-based company, said, Hassan is my first born and I will do everything I can to save him. I appeal for any support that I can get towards this effort.

He said the child was earlier scheduled to have a bone marrow transplant in Turkey but due to the prohibitive costs, they were nowconsidering Pakistan. Still, the estimates we have been given are beyond our reach,Khan said, adding that he was praying for a miracle to save his son.

AML is one of the commonest types of leukaemia or blood cancer in children. In AML, the body makes many immature white blood cells. These cells, called myeloid blasts, cant mature into normal white blood cells. Although AML is a serious disease, it can be cured with high intensity chemotherapy and a bone marrow / stem cell transplant at an early stage.

mohammad hassan 3 years and two months Image Credit:

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Jasper Therapeutics launches out of Stanford with new approach to stem cell treatment – Endpoints News

By daniellenierenberg

The first girl in the trial came in with chronic diarrhea and the immune system of an untreated HIV patient. Born with a rare genetic disease that impeded her ability to make B and T cells, she had once been given a stem cell transplant but it didnt take. Back in the hospital, she was injected with a new experimental antibody and then given a new stem cell transplant. Soon, she gained weight. The diarrhea stopped.

She has normal T cells now, Judith Shizuru, the Stanford scientist who pioneered the antibody, told Endpoints News. Shes in school.

Its the kind of medical story to launch a biotech around, and thats what Shizuruis doing. Today, her company Jasper Therapeutics is emerging out of stealth-mode with $35 million in Series A funding led by Abingworth and Qiming, a molecule from Amgen, and a Phase I trial set for its first readout on Monday at ASH.

Jasper is broadly aimed at making stem cell transplants safer, more accessible and more effective by using antibodies as conditioning agents. Theseagents clear out bone marrow to make room for the new stem cells to graft onto the body.

Their Phase I uses a naked antibody called JSP191 to help patients with severe combined autoimmune deficiency receive stem cell transplants the only possible cure for the life-threatening disease but such transplants are used in a wide variety of conditions and Jasper has broader aims. Those include other autoimmune diseases, acute myeloid leukemia and cell-directed gene therapy.

Theres a significant amount of progress being made in gene therapy, interim CEO William Lis told Endpoints, but no progress being made in a conditioning agent that will help graft gene therapy.

Shizuru path to the new antibody was long and fortuitous. In 1987, Arl Arzst, the legendary ad executive and president of Proctor and Gamble international flew in on a recruiting trip for Stanford business students. There he visited Shizuru, a young biologyPhD candidate, because he knew her roommate. Arzsts daughter had diabetes and as Shizuru explained the work she was doing on pancreatic islet cell transplants, he told her to come to Europe.

Shizuru had never been to Europe, but there Arszt introduced her to Ken Farber and the other founders of the Juvenile Diabetes Foundation (now the JDRF). The founders struck a years-long correspondence and encouraged Shizuru to go to medical school, where she decided that if scientists were ever going to develop transplants that didnt trigger an immune response, it would be through stem cell work. She continued her work at the Irv Weissman Stanford regenerative lab, where eventually a graduate student made a discovery that piqued her interest.

To put new stem cells in, you have to get the old stem cells out. Thats not always easy. The cells sit inthese pockets in the bone marrow, and theyre pretty comfortable there. Doctors have to force them out, often using chemotherapy or radiation, which damage DNA and cause severe side effects. The costs sometimes outweigh the benefits.

There are diseases were not treating because its too dangerous, Shizuru said. And the kids were treating, theyre so, so fragile.

The grad student had shown in mice that antibodies could be used to deplete the stem cells and potentially eliminate the need for chemotherapy or radiation. Shizuru and her team began looking to see if anyone had developed a human version of the antibody, CD117. It turned out Amgen had already developed a version of this antibody for a different use. It also turned out she had a former postdoc and a former advisor who worked there. They began a collaboration.

We set out to cross the valley of death, Shizuru said, using an industry slang term for the jump from animal models to human uses.

After making a variety of tweaks to the treatment, they published a paper inScience Translational Medicine in 2016showing the antibodies created a 10,000 fold reduction in the number of stem cells in mice.

The same year, they began a clinical trial on 90 SCID patients. These patients had received stem cell transplants when they were very young but hadnt been given chemo or radiation for fear the side effects would be too severe. The original transplants boosted their numberof immune cells, but without chemo or radiation, the stem cells dont graft into those pockets and the body wont continue producing T cells. Without those, they are extraordinarily prone to infection. Many pass away before age 2.

The hope is that the antibodies allowed the stem cells to graft, and the preliminary answer to that question will be out on Monday. For the first girl in the trial, life has improved but questions about how long her body will make immune cells remain. Still, for that girl and others, Shizuru is confident.

We see there is stem cell engraftment, Shurizi said. They are actually making new T cells.

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Sickle Cell Anemia Patient Becomes First Person in the US to Have Her Genes Edited With CRISPR – Interesting Engineering

By daniellenierenberg

Last week, a woman namedVictoria Gray became the first person in the U.S. to have her cells edited with CRISPR. The41-year-old patient was sufferingfromsickle cell anemia.

RELATED:FIRST HUMAN TRIAL USING CRISPR GENE-EDITING IN US BEGINS

The condition, caused by a genetic mutation that messes with the shape of red blood cells, causes havoc on patients, and to make things even worse, the options for treatment are very limited and ineffective. The only current treatment for sickle cell anemia patients is a donor transplant that works for just 10% of patients, but all that is about to change.

It was clear that analternative, much more effectivesolutionwas desperately needed. After much consideration, doctors believed that editing cells extracted from a patient's own bone marrow could restore effective red blood cell creation, and this is exactly the operation they attempted on Gray.

The doctors used CRISPR to tweak Gray's bone marrow DNA to turn on a specific protein that would allow proper red blood cell generation. The operation makes Gray the first person in the U.S. to undergo a CRISPR editing procedure and the second globally.

The treatment comes from observations made back in the 1940s.In 1941 a pediatrician named Jane Watson noticed that babies with sickle cell didnt have symptoms until 6 months to 1 year of age, Vivien Sheehan, a hematologist at Baylor University told Popular Science.

The pediatrician also discovered that these infants produced fetal hemoglobin for much longer periods than healthy babies.Following Watson's observations, the research since then has indicated that increasing fetal hemoglobin could provide an effective treatment for the disease.

Now, CRISPR may just make that treatment viable. But before we get too excited, it should be noted that the strategy comes with several risks.

In order for the edited cells to be inserted back into the patients bone marrow, other stem cells need to be deactivated. Otherwise, there is the chance the unedited stem cells may continue to produce sickled red blood cells very fast, outpacing the edited cells' production of healthy cells.

Now researchers say they need to follow Gray's progress for at least 15 years to rule out any other potential dangers of the procedure. Still, for those 90% suffering with sickle cell anemia that don't respond well to current treatment, the procedure, if successful, would offer the much-needed lifeline they've been hoping for.

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Mount Sinai Joins Progressive MS Trial of NurOwn Cell Therapy – Multiple Sclerosis News Today

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Mount Sinai Medical Center has joined withBrainStorm Cell Therapeutics to explore the safety and efficacy of NurOwn as a potential treatment for progressive multiple sclerosis (MS) in an ongoing Phase 2 trial.

The New York center is the fourth clinical site participating in the trial, in addition to Keck School of Medicine of The University of Southern California (USC), Stanford University School of Medicine, and the Cleveland Clinic in Ohio.

Mount Sinai is ready to start enrolling patients under the supervision of neurologistFred Lublin, MD, and his clinical team at The Corinne Goldsmith Dickinson Center for Multiple Sclerosis.

We are happy to be a part of this exciting study to determine if neurally-directed stem cells can be a therapeutic approach to treating MS, Lublin said in a press release.

NurOwn is a cell-based therapy that uses the patients own bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells (MSC) to promote and support the repair of nerve cells.

Patients MSCs are modified in the lab to secrete growth factors that are believed to protect nerve cells from damage, to promote the repair of the protective myelin sheath in nerve cells (which is destroyed in MS), and potentially slow or halt disease progression.

The open-label Phase 2 clinical trial (NCT03799718) will enroll and treat up to 20 adults with either primary progressive MS (PPMS) or secondary progressive MS (SPMS).

All participants will undergo a bone marrow biopsy to collect MSCs, which will later on be injected back to the patient through three intrathecal administrations injected directly into the cerebrospinal fluid over 16 weeks.

During this time, and for the following 12 weeks, researchers will evaluate the safety of the procedure, as well as the neuromodulatory effect of the modified MSCs.

To confirm that NurOwn cells are delivering neurotrophic factors and immunomodulatory signaling molecules as expected, the research team will look for an increase in the amount and type of these biomarkers in patients cerebrospinal fluid following the cell transplants.

BrainStorm looks forward to partnering with and supporting Dr. Lublin and the dedicated clinical trial team at the Mount Sinai Hospital to quickly advance the Phase 2 progressive MS clinical trial, said Ralph Kern, MD, MHSc, BrainStorms chief operating officer and chief medical officer.

For more information about the trial, including its sites and contacts, please visit this link.

NurOwn has been tested in animal models for various neurodegenerative diseases, including amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), where it showed a good safety profile and promising efficacy signs.

An ongoing Phase 3 trial (NCT03280056) testing NurOwn in people with ALS is expected to conclude in December 2020.

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Patrcia holds her PhD in Medical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases from the Leiden University Medical Center in Leiden, The Netherlands. She has studied Applied Biology at Universidade do Minho and was a postdoctoral research fellow at Instituto de Medicina Molecular in Lisbon, Portugal. Her work has been focused on molecular genetic traits of infectious agents such as viruses and parasites.

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Autolus Therapeutics Announces New Data Showcasing Clinical Progress of Programmed T Cell Therapy Pipeline in Blood Cancers – GlobeNewswire

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AUTO1 shows 87% MRD negative complete response in adult patients with r/r ALL, with no severe cytokine release syndrome

Data presented at 61st American Society of Hematology Annual Meeting form basis for advancement of AUTO1 into pivotal clinical trial in adult ALL

Investor call to be held December 9 at 8:30 am ET / 1:30 pm GMT to review data

LONDON, Dec. 07, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Autolus Therapeutics plc(Nasdaq: AUTL) announced today new data highlighting progress on its next-generation programmed T cell therapies to treat patients with acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) and adults with relapsed/refractory diffuse large B cell lymphoma (DLBCL). The data were presented in oral presentations at the 61stAmerican Society of Hematology(ASH) Annual Meeting and Exposition inOrlando, FL. Additional data on pediatric patients with ALL will be presented on December 8.

The data on AUTO1 presented at this years ASH meeting demonstrate the favorable safety profile and high level of clinical activity of AUTO1 in both adults and pediatric patients with ALL, and we look forward to initiation of the pivotal program in adult ALL in the first half of 2020, said Dr. Christian Itin, chairman and chief executive officer of Autolus.

Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia Data Presented

Title: AUTO1 A novel fast off CD19CAR delivers durable remissions and prolonged CAR T cell persistence with low CRS or neurotoxicity in adult ALL (Abstract # 226)

Updated results for ALLCAR19, the Phase 1 trial evaluating AUTO1 in adults with recurrent/refractory ALL, were presented by Dr. Claire Roddie MB, PhD, FRCPath, honorary senior lecturer,Cancer Institute, University College London (UCL), in an oral presentation. The trial is designed to assess the primary endpoints of safety ( Grade 3 toxicity) and feasibility of product generation, as well as other secondary endpoints, including efficacy. The trial enrolled patients with a high tumor burden (44% had 50% BM blasts), who were considered high-risk for experiencing cytokine release syndrome (CRS). Product was manufactured for 19 patients; product for 13 of those patients was manufactured using a semi-automated closed process, which will be used for commercial supply.

As of the data cut-off date of November 25, 16 patients had received at least one dose of AUTO1. AUTO1 was well tolerated, with no patients experiencing Grade 3 CRS, and 3 of 16 patients (19%), who had high leukemia burden, experiencing Grade 3 neurotoxicity that resolved swiftly with steroids.

Of 15 patients evaluable for efficacy, 13 (87%) achieved MRD negative CR at 1 month and all patients had ongoing CAR T cell persistence at last follow up. CD19-negative relapse occurred in 22% (2 of 15) patients. In the patients dosed with AUTO1 manufactured in the closed process, 9 of 9 (100%) achieved MRD negative CR at 1 month and 6 months event free survival, and overall survival in this cohort was 100%.

Adult ALL patients, who face a median survival of less than one year after their ALL recurs or relapses, have a significant need for a CAR T cell therapy that is highly active, safe and is a standalone therapy not requiring a stem cell transplant, said Dr. Hagop M. Kantarjian, Chair of the Department of Leukemia at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center.

The novel CD 19 CAR-T therapy, AUTO1, is potentially transformative as a standalone curative option for patients with r/r ALL, especially in adults, given its favorable safety profile, said Dr. Max Topp associate professor of Internal Medicine, Hematology and Oncology at the University of Wuerzburg.

Title: Therapy of pediatric B-ALL with a lower affinity CD19 CAR leads to enhanced expansion and prolonged CAR T cell persistence in patients with low bone marrow tumor burden, and is associated with a favorable toxicity profile (Abstract # 225)

Dr. Sara Ghorashian, honorary senior lecturer, Great Ormond Street Institute of Child Health, University College London, presented updated data from the phase 1 CARPALL study of AUTO1 in pediatric ALL patients with low bone marrow tumor burden. The trial is intended to assess the primary endpoints of safety and proportion of patients in molecular complete remission at 1 month. The study recruited a total of 25 patients and stratified them into 2 cohorts. Fourteen patients were treated in cohort 1, which utilized a manual manufacturing process; product was unable to be generated in 3 patients. Median follow-up was 27 months in cohort 1. Seven patients were treated in cohort 2, which utilized the semi-automated closed manufacturing process, which will be used for commercial supply. The aim of cohort 2 was to demonstrate feasibility of manufacture at scale. Product was generated for 100% of patients. Median follow-up was 7 months in cohort 2.

AUTO1 was well-tolerated overall, with no patients experiencing Grade 3 CRS and 1 of 21 (5%) experiencing Grade 4 neurotoxicity, which was considered unrelated to CAR T therapy.

Nineteen of 21 treated patients (90%) achieved molecular complete remission at 1 month post infusion. Consistent with pre-clinical data, CAR T cell expansion was excellent and detectable by flow in a number of patients up to 36 months. Persistence was noted in 15 of 21 patients at last follow-up, up to 36 months. In cohort 2, 100% of patients achieved molecular complete remission at 1 month post infusion.

In the 14 patients in cohort 1, the overall survival at 6 months was 86% and at 12 months was 71%; event free survival (EFS) at 6 months was 71% and at 12 months was 54%. The patients in cohort 2 are not yet evaluable for these parameters. Overall, nine patients relapsed; 5 of 8 evaluable relapses were due to loss of CD19 antigen on the tumor cells.

Title: Clonal dynamics of early responder and long-term surviving CAR-T cells in humans (Abstract # 52)

Dr. Luca Biasco, senior research associate at University College London, presented a detailed analysis of CAR T products, and insertion site analysis from the CARPALL phase 1 patients. This analysis revealed highly polyclonal engraftment, even at very late time-points. Dr. Biasco hypothesized that the propensity for high level polyclonal long-term engraftment was due to favorable phenotype of the CAR T product and the binding kinetic of the receptor.

Diffuse Large B-cell Lymphoma Data Presented

Title: Phase 1/2 study of AUTO3, the first bicistronic chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) targeting CD19 and CD22 followed by an anti-PD1 in patients with relapsed/refractory (r/r) Diffuse Large B Cell Lymphoma (DLBCL): Results of cohort 1 and 2 of the ALEXANDER study (Abstract # 246)

Dr. Kirit Ardeshna, consultant hematologist, Department of Hematology, University College London Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, presented updated data from the ALEXANDER Phase 1/2 study of AUTO3, the first bicistronic CAR T targeting CD19 and CD22 followed by an anti-PD1, in diffuse large B cell lymphoma (DLBCL). 16 patients were treated, and fourteen patients were evaluable at one month. AUTO3 was well-tolerated, with no patients experiencing Grade 3 CRS with primary treatment, and 1 of 14 experiencing Grade 3 neurotoxicity that resolved swiftly with steroids. Five of 14 had a complete response, with 4 of 5 complete responses ongoing, the longest at 18 months.

DLBCL is an aggressive and rapidly progressing cancer, and early response is critical to ensuring positive outcomes for these patients. These early data show the promise of AUTO3 in DLBCL, and we expect to advance AUTO3 to a decision point in relapsed/refractory DLBCL by the middle of next year, said Dr. Christian Itin, chairman and chief executive officer of Autolus. In addition, we look forward to presenting the data from the AMELIA trial of AUTO3 in pediatric ALL during poster sessions on Sunday, December 8, 6:00 8:00 PM ET.

Investor call to review data on Monday, December 9

Autolus management will host an investor conference call on Monday, December 9, at 8:30 a.m. EDT/ 1:30pm GMT, to review the data presented at ASH.

To listen to the webcast and view the accompanying slide presentation, please go to:https://www.autolus.com/investor-relations/news-and-events/events.

The call may also be accessed by dialing (866) 679-5407 for U.S. and Canada callers or (409) 217-8320 for international callers. Please reference conference ID 9796038. After the conference call, a replay will be available for one week. To access the replay, please dial (855) 859-2056 for U.S. and Canada callers or (404) 537-3406 for international callers. Please reference conference ID 9796038.

About AUTO1

AUTO1 is a CD19 CAR T cell investigational therapy designed to overcome the limitations in safety - while maintaining similar levels of efficacy - compared to current CD19 CAR T cell therapies.Designed to have a fast target binding off-rate to minimize excessive activation of the programmed T cells, AUTO1 may reduce toxicity and be less prone to T cell exhaustion, which could enhance persistence and improve the T cells' abilities to engage in serial killing of target cancer cells. In 2018, Autolus signed a license agreement under which Autolus acquired global rights fromUCL Business plc(UCLB), the technology-transfer company of UCL, to develop and commercialize AUTO1 for the treatment of B cell malignancies. AUTO1 is currently being evaluated in two Phase 1 studies, one in pediatric ALL and one in adult ALL.

About AUTO3

AUTO3 is a programmed T cell therapy containing two independent chimeric antigen receptors targeting CD19 and CD22 that have each been independently optimized for single target activity. By simultaneously targeting two B cell antigens, AUTO3 is designed to minimize relapse due to single antigen loss in patients with B cell malignancies. AUTO3 is currently being tested in pediatric ALL in the AMELIA clinical trial and in diffuse large B cell lymphoma in the ALEXANDER clinical trial.

AboutAutolus Therapeutics plc

Autolus is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company developing next-generation, programmed T cell therapies for the treatment of cancer. Using a broad suite of proprietary and modular T cell programming technologies, the company is engineering precisely targeted, controlled and highly active T cell therapies that are designed to better recognize cancer cells, break down their defense mechanisms and eliminate these cells. Autolus has a pipeline of product candidates in development for the treatment of hematological malignancies and solid tumors. For more information please visit http://www.autolus.com.

Forward-Looking Statement

This press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of the "safe harbor" provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Forward-looking statements are statements that are not historical facts, and in some cases can be identified by terms such as "may," "will," "could," "expects," "plans," "anticipates," and "believes." These statements include, but are not limited to, statements regarding Autolus financial condition and results of operations, as well as statements regarding the anticipated development of Autolus product candidates, including its intentions regarding the timing for providing further updates on the development of its product candidates, and the sufficiency of its cash resources. Any forward-looking statements are based on management's current views and assumptions and involve risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results, performance or events to differ materially from those expressed or implied in such statements. For a discussion of other risks and uncertainties, and other important factors, any of which could cause our actual results to differ from those contained in the forward-looking statements, see the section titled "Risk Factors" in Autolus' Annual Report on Form 20-F filed on November 23, 2018 as well as discussions of potential risks, uncertainties, and other important factors in Autolus' future filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission from time to time. All information in this press release is as of the date of the release, and the company undertakes no obligation to publicly update any forward-looking statement, whether as a result of new information, future events, or otherwise, except as required by law.

Investor and media contact: Silvia TaylorVice President, Corporate Affairs and Communications Autolus+1-240-801-3850s.taylor@autolus.com

UK:Julia Wilson+44 (0) 7818 430877j.wilson@autolus.com

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Autolus Therapeutics Announces New Data Showcasing Clinical Progress of Programmed T Cell Therapy Pipeline in Blood Cancers - GlobeNewswire

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