Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Stanford doctors advance in bid to turn mice stem cells into blood vessels

23.06.2006
Researchers at the Stanford University School of Medicine have taken a first step toward growing blood vessels from stem cells that could eventually be transplanted into living organisms.

Starting with embryonic stem cells derived from mice, surgical resident Oscar Abilez, MD, and colleagues have successfully differentiated the stem cells into myocytes, one of the building blocks of blood vessels, after placing them in a life-like growth environment that the research team had created. The scientists hope to be able to eventually grow whole blood vessels that can be transplanted back into mice.

The work is being performed in the laboratory of Christopher Zarins, MD, professor of surgery.

"It's very odd," Abilez said. "We get these stem cells and grow them into contracting myocytes in cultures: You really see them contracting, you really know they're alive, and you start to believe this stem cell stuff has possibilities."

For the study, Abilez received first place in the seventh annual International Society of Endovascular Fellows' research award in laboratory sciences. The findings are published in this month's edition of the Journal of Endovascular Therapy.

The ultimate goal of the research is to bring together two of today's most promising areas of medical investigation: stem cell research and tissue engineering. Tissue engineering, the growth of organs and tissues outside the body for replacement, has achieved successful transplantations of a variety of human tissues including skin and corneas. Most recently, a team of researchers at Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, N.C., performed the successful transplantation of laboratory-grown bladders into seven children.

Tissue-engineered blood vessels have also seen some success when transplanted into animal models, but still face a variety of limitations, Abilez said, key among them rejection by the immune system. By creating a tissue-engineered blood vessel grown from a patient's own stem cells, this rejection could potentially be eliminated, Abilez said.

"Our goal is to derive all the different cell types from the same, original cell," Abilez explained. "This would be new for an engineered tissue. We hope our work with mouse stem cells could eventually be translated to human autologous adult stem cells."

With an estimated 70 million Americans diagnosed with cardiovascular disease, the need for arterial vascular grafts continues to grow. In 2002, there were 1.5 million medical procedures done that required replacement blood vessels.

"This is an exciting, emerging research front," said John Cook, MD, PhD, professor of medicine (cardiovascular medicine). "It has great potential for therapeutic applications."

Abilez's success is due in part to a custom-made bioreactor that researchers built in their laboratory; it has the capability of delivering controlled chemical, electrical and mechanical stimulation to the stem cells. Bioreactors have been used for centuries as fermentation chambers for growing organisms such as bacteria and yeast, but only recently have they been used in stem cell research labs.

"Oscar is the first one to really create an environment which cells see in real life," Zarins said. "He's the first one to really create the multiplicity of biomechanical stresses and strains that the vascular system experiences in everyday life when you simply get up and walk around the block." The computer-controlled bioreactor was developed to help create a standardized process for differentiating stem cells in laboratories that could be used around the world.

"The idea behind it is that you can control various conditions to try to make these stem cells become the cells you want," Abilez said. "Our goal is to take the mouse stem cells and find the conditions that will make the stem cells into smooth muscle cells (myocytes), endothelial cells and fibroblasts, which make up the three layers of a blood vessel. The idea is if we can optimize our yield we can more easily obtain the large number of specific cells required to make a blood vessel."

Tracie White | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.stanford.edu

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Cancer diagnosis: no more needles?
25.05.2018 | Christian-Albrechts-Universität zu Kiel

nachricht Less is more? Gene switch for healthy aging found
25.05.2018 | Leibniz-Institut für Alternsforschung - Fritz-Lipmann-Institut e.V. (FLI)

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Powerful IT security for the car of the future – research alliance develops new approaches

The more electronics steer, accelerate and brake cars, the more important it is to protect them against cyber-attacks. That is why 15 partners from industry and academia will work together over the next three years on new approaches to IT security in self-driving cars. The joint project goes by the name Security For Connected, Autonomous Cars (SecForCARs) and has funding of €7.2 million from the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research. Infineon is leading the project.

Vehicles already offer diverse communication interfaces and more and more automated functions, such as distance and lane-keeping assist systems. At the same...

Im Focus: Molecular switch will facilitate the development of pioneering electro-optical devices

A research team led by physicists at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) has developed molecular nanoswitches that can be toggled between two structurally different states using an applied voltage. They can serve as the basis for a pioneering class of devices that could replace silicon-based components with organic molecules.

The development of new electronic technologies drives the incessant reduction of functional component sizes. In the context of an international collaborative...

Im Focus: LZH showcases laser material processing of tomorrow at the LASYS 2018

At the LASYS 2018, from June 5th to 7th, the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) will be showcasing processes for the laser material processing of tomorrow in hall 4 at stand 4E75. With blown bomb shells the LZH will present first results of a research project on civil security.

At this year's LASYS, the LZH will exhibit light-based processes such as cutting, welding, ablation and structuring as well as additive manufacturing for...

Im Focus: Self-illuminating pixels for a new display generation

There are videos on the internet that can make one marvel at technology. For example, a smartphone is casually bent around the arm or a thin-film display is rolled in all directions and with almost every diameter. From the user's point of view, this looks fantastic. From a professional point of view, however, the question arises: Is that already possible?

At Display Week 2018, scientists from the Fraunhofer Institute for Applied Polymer Research IAP will be demonstrating today’s technological possibilities and...

Im Focus: Explanation for puzzling quantum oscillations has been found

So-called quantum many-body scars allow quantum systems to stay out of equilibrium much longer, explaining experiment | Study published in Nature Physics

Recently, researchers from Harvard and MIT succeeded in trapping a record 53 atoms and individually controlling their quantum state, realizing what is called a...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

In focus: Climate adapted plants

25.05.2018 | Event News

Save the date: Forum European Neuroscience – 07-11 July 2018 in Berlin, Germany

02.05.2018 | Event News

Invitation to the upcoming "Current Topics in Bioinformatics: Big Data in Genomics and Medicine"

13.04.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

In focus: Climate adapted plants

25.05.2018 | Event News

Flow probes from the 3D printer

25.05.2018 | Machine Engineering

Less is more? Gene switch for healthy aging found

25.05.2018 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>