A few weeks ago we held a Facebook Live “Ask the Stem Cell Team About Parkinson’s Disease” event. As you can imagine we got lots of questions but, because of time constraints, only had time to answer a few. Thanks to my fabulous CIRM colleagues, Dr. Lila Collins and Dr. Kent Fitzgerald, for putting together … Continue reading Parkinson’s Disease and Stem Cells

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Today the governing Board of the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM) expanded efforts related to the $5 million in emergency funding for the CIRM COVID-19 program. The new guidelines mean that inception discovery projects (DISC1), whose goal is developing new and transformational ideas, will now be eligible for CIRM COVID-19 funding.  These projects can … Continue reading CIRM Board Expands Efforts of COVID-19 Program

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Frances Saldana is one of the most remarkable women I know. She has lost all three of her children to Huntington’s disease (HD) – a nasty, fatal disease that steadily destroys the nerve cells in the brain – but still retains a fighting spirit and a commitment to finding a cure for HD. She is … Continue reading A Tribute to Huntington’s Disease Warriors in the Age of COVID-19

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Last week saw a flurry of really encouraging reports from projects that CIRM has supported. We blogged about two of them last Wednesday, but here’s another two programs showing promising results. UC San Diego researcher Dr. Stephanie Cherqui is running a CIRM-funded clinical trial for cystinosis. This is a condition where patients lack the ability … Continue reading Two rare diseases, two pieces of good news

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Today the governing Board of the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM) approved new clinical trials for COVID-19 and sickle cell disease (SCD) and two earlier stage projects to develop therapies for COVID-19. Dr. Michael Mathay, of the University of California at San Francisco, was awarded $750,000 for a clinical trial testing the use of … Continue reading CIRM Board Approves Clinical Trials Targeting COVID-19 and Sickle Cell Disease

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Severe Leukocyte Adhesion Deficiency-1 (LAD-1) is a rare condition that causes the immune system to malfunction and reduces its ability to fight off viruses and bacteria. Over time the repeated infections can take a heavy toll on the body and dramatically shorten a person’s life. But now a therapy, developed by Rocket Pharmaceuticals, is showing … Continue reading Promising results from CIRM-funded projects

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When you have worked with a group of people over many years the relationship becomes more than just a business venture, it becomes personal. That’s certainly the case with jCyte, a company founded by Drs. Henry Klassen and Jing Yang, aimed at finding a cure for a rare form of vision loss called retinitis pigmentosa. … Continue reading A clear vision for the future

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In a previous blog post, we talked about how scientists at the Gladstone Institutes have shifted their current operations towards helping with the current coronavirus pandemic. Now scientists at Gladstone and U.C. San Francisco have formed two new research institutes to broaden its impact on unsolved diseases such as COVID-19. One of these institutes is … Continue reading Scientists at Gladstone and UCSF form two new research institutes

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You know you are working with some of the finest scientific minds in the world when they get elected to the prestigious National Academy of Sciences (NAS). It’s the science equivalent of the baseball, football or even Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. People only get in if their peers vote them in. It’s considered … Continue reading A true Hall of Fame winner

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Andy McMahon is one of the most understated, humble and low-key people you are ever likely to meet. He’s also one of the smartest. And he has a collection of titles to prove it. He is the W.M. Keck Provost and University Professor in USC’s departments of Stem Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine at the … Continue reading Huge honor, hugely deserved for CIRM-funded stem cell researcher

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