Potential for regenerative medicine and cancer research earns doctoral student Ido Sagi a Kaye Innovation Award
Stem cell research holds huge potential for medicine and human health. In particular, human embryonic stem cells (ESCs), with their ability to turn into any cell in the human body, are essential to the future prevention and treatment of disease.
One set or two? Diploid versus haploid cells
Most of the cells in our body are diploid, which means they carry two sets of chromosomes — one from each parent. Until now, scientists have only succeeded in creating haploid embryonic stem cells — which contain a single set of chromosomes — in non-human mammals such as mice, rats and monkeys. However, scientists have long sought to isolate and replicate these haploid ESCs in humans, which would allow them to work with one set of human chromosomes as opposed to a mixture from both parents.
This milestone was finally reached when Ido Sagi, working as a PhD student at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem’s Azrieli Center for Stem Cells and Genetic Research, led research that yielded the first successful isolation and maintenance of haploid embryonic stem cells in humans. Unlike in mice, these haploid stem cells were able to differentiate into many other cell types, such as brain, heart and pancreas, while retaining a single set of chromosomes.
With Prof. Nissim Benvenisty, Director of the Azrieli Center, Sagi showed that this new human stem cell type will play an important role in human genetic and medical research. It will aid our understanding of human development – for example, why we reproduce sexually instead of from a single parent. It will make genetic screening easier and more precise, by allowing the examination of single sets of chromosomes. And it is already enabling the study of resistance to chemotherapy drugs, with implications for cancer therapy.
Diagnostic kits for personalized medicine
Based on this research, Yissum, the Technology Transfer arm of the Hebrew University, launched the company New Stem, which is developing a diagnostic kit for predicting resistance to chemotherapy treatments. By amassing a broad library of human pluripotent stem cells with different mutations and genetic makeups, NewStem plans to develop diagnostic kits for personalized medication and future therapeutic and reproductive products.
The Latest on: Haploid embryonic stem cells
- Haploid Stem Cells Used To Produce Mice With Same Sex Parents on October 15, 2018 at 9:28 pm
Haploid embryonic stem cells were used in the current study successfully to produce healthy bimaternal pups. Cells are produced by one parent and contain half of the number of chromosomes and half the ... […]
- Mouse pups with same-sex parents born in China using stem cells and gene editing on October 12, 2018 at 7:55 am
We have made several findings in the past by combining reproduction and regeneration, so we tried to find out whether more normal mice with two female parents, or even mice with two male parents, ... […]
- Scientists use haploid stem cells to produce mice with same-sex parents on October 12, 2018 at 6:37 am
The current study successfully produced healthy bimaternal pups by making use of haploid embryonic stem cells (ESCs). These cells are produced by one parent and contain only half the number of ... […]
- Healthy mice born to 2 mothers using stem cells, gene editing on October 12, 2018 at 3:48 am
To produce healthy bimaternal mice, the team used haploid embryonic stem cells (ESCs), which contain half the normal number of chromosomes and DNA from only one parent. The researchers then used gene ... […]
- Stem cells and gene editing used to make mice with two mothers on October 11, 2018 at 8:56 am
To create their bi-maternal mice, a team of scientists led by Qi Zhou used cells known as haploid embryonic stem cells (ESCs), which contain half the normal number of chromosomes and DNA from only one ... […]
- Mice born of two genetic mothers, thanks to stem cells and gene editing on October 11, 2018 at 8:05 am
"We have made several findings in the past by combining reproduction and regeneration, so we tried to find out whether more normal mice with two female parents, or even mice with two male parents, ... […]
- Haploid Stem Cells Used to Create Human Genome Atlas on May 8, 2018 at 11:26 pm
Sophisticated gene editing technology has been used to create a new embryonic stem cell and atlas of the human genome, data provided sheds light on roles of genes in health and disease, as published ... […]
- CRISPR Screens Stem Cell Genome, Charts Essentialome on April 24, 2018 at 7:01 am
The team, led by Nissim Benvenisty, M.D., Ph.D., director of the Azrieli Center for Stem Cells and Genetic Research and the Herbert Cohn Chair in Cancer Research, carried out a genome-wide CRISPR-Cas9 ... […]
- A Colony of Haploid Embryonic Stem Cells (image) on April 23, 2018 at 12:09 pm
This photo shows a colony of haploid embryonic stem cells created at the Hebrew University's Azrieli Center for Stem Cells and Genetic Research. Disclaimer: AAAS and EurekAlert! are not responsible ... […]
- Scientists generate an atlas of the human genome using stem cells on April 23, 2018 at 5:25 am
These genes are thought to maintain the identity of embryonic stem cells and prevent them ... The paper is titled "Defining essential genes for human pluripotent stem cells by CRISPR-Cas9 screening in ... […]
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