Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Epigenetics to shape stem cell future

20.02.2007
Everyone hopes that one day stem cell-based regenerative medicine will help repair diseased tissue. Before then, it may be necessary to decipher the epigenetic signals that give stem cells their unique ability to self-renew and transform them into different cell types.

The hype over epigenetic research is because it opens up the possibility of reprograming cells. By manipulating epigenetic marks, cells can be transformed into other cell types without changing their DNA. It is simply a question of adding or removing the chemical tags involved.

Stem cells rely heavily on epigenetic signals. As a stem cell develops, chemical tags on the DNA or its surrounding histone proteins switch genes on or off, controlling a cell’s fate.

European labs are breaking ground in both the epigenetic and stem cell arenas. To build on this expertise and stimulate the exchange on novel technologies, the European Science Foundation organised the EuroSTELLS workshop ‘Exploring chromatin in stem cells.’ The event held on 23- 24 January, 2007 attracted 106 researchers from 15 countries to Montpellier, France.

... more about:
»Cell »Stem »epigenetic

“Epigenetics and stem cell biology are such clear strengths in the European research community,” remarked Bradley Bernstein, a guest speaker from Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston. “We’ve found ourselves working very hard in the US to catch up.”

Epigenetic research has benefited tremendously from genome technology, and work in the field is advancing at break-neck speed. “If you think that the first enzymes controlling histone methylation were found in 2001, the acceleration is tremendous,” says Robert Feil, a EuroSTELLS researcher based at the CNRS Institute of Molecular Genetics in Montpellier. “We are making good use of past investments in genome sequencing. In the next five years the technology will be ten times faster than it has been so far.”

Conference goers reported that new high-throughput approaches and refined analytical techniques promise to fill in some big gaps in understanding how epigenetic tags define a stem cell and how they can be manipulated. With this knowledge on board, researchers will be boosting the odds that one day stem cell therapies will reach the clinic.

EuroSTELLS is the European Collaborative Research (EUROCORES) programme on “Development of a Stem Cell Tool Box” developed by the European Science Foundation.

The European Science Foundation (ESF) provides a platform for its Member Organisations to advance European research and explore new directions for research at the European level.

Established in 1974 as an independent non-governmental organisation, the ESF currently serves 75 Member Organisations across 30 countries.

Thomas Lau | alfa
Further information:
http://www.esf.org/esf_pressarea_page.php?language=0§ion=6&year=2007&newsrelease=163

Further reports about: Cell Stem epigenetic

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Cells communicate in a dynamic code
19.02.2018 | California Institute of Technology

nachricht Studying mitosis' structure to understand the inside of cancer cells
19.02.2018 | Biophysical Society

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: In best circles: First integrated circuit from self-assembled polymer

For the first time, a team of researchers at the Max-Planck Institute (MPI) for Polymer Research in Mainz, Germany, has succeeded in making an integrated circuit (IC) from just a monolayer of a semiconducting polymer via a bottom-up, self-assembly approach.

In the self-assembly process, the semiconducting polymer arranges itself into an ordered monolayer in a transistor. The transistors are binary switches used...

Im Focus: Demonstration of a single molecule piezoelectric effect

Breakthrough provides a new concept of the design of molecular motors, sensors and electricity generators at nanoscale

Researchers from the Institute of Organic Chemistry and Biochemistry of the CAS (IOCB Prague), Institute of Physics of the CAS (IP CAS) and Palacký University...

Im Focus: Hybrid optics bring color imaging using ultrathin metalenses into focus

For photographers and scientists, lenses are lifesavers. They reflect and refract light, making possible the imaging systems that drive discovery through the microscope and preserve history through cameras.

But today's glass-based lenses are bulky and resist miniaturization. Next-generation technologies, such as ultrathin cameras or tiny microscopes, require...

Im Focus: Stem cell divisions in the adult brain seen for the first time

Scientists from the University of Zurich have succeeded for the first time in tracking individual stem cells and their neuronal progeny over months within the intact adult brain. This study sheds light on how new neurons are produced throughout life.

The generation of new nerve cells was once thought to taper off at the end of embryonic development. However, recent research has shown that the adult brain...

Im Focus: Interference as a new method for cooling quantum devices

Theoretical physicists propose to use negative interference to control heat flow in quantum devices. Study published in Physical Review Letters

Quantum computer parts are sensitive and need to be cooled to very low temperatures. Their tiny size makes them particularly susceptible to a temperature...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

2nd International Conference on High Temperature Shape Memory Alloys (HTSMAs)

15.02.2018 | Event News

Aachen DC Grid Summit 2018

13.02.2018 | Event News

How Global Climate Policy Can Learn from the Energy Transition

12.02.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Japanese researchers develop ultrathin, highly elastic skin display

19.02.2018 | Information Technology

Dispersal of Fish Eggs by Water Birds – Just a Myth?

19.02.2018 | Ecology, The Environment and Conservation

Studying mitosis' structure to understand the inside of cancer cells

19.02.2018 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>