In a new study, researchers from the Singapore-MIT Alliance in Research and Technology have identified three physical characteristics of mesenchymal stem cells [MSCs] that can distinguish them from other bone marrow-derived cell types. By isolating cells in the bone marrow based on size, stiffness, and fluctuations in the nuclear membrane, scientists can rapidly generate and purify the stem cells needed to treat patients.
Today, stem cells are rightfully perceived as the future of regenerative medicine, set to bring the marvels of science fiction into reality. But in looking ahead at all of the promise that stem cells hold for the future, it becomes easy to miss the scientific advances made to date for the millions of people around the world suffering from disease, trauma, and injury. Thus, today marks Stem Cell Awareness Day: a global celebration of stem cell research coordinated to highlight the treatments and therapies currently in development to create personalized regenerative therapies for patients.
Scientists at Academia Sinica in Taiwan have used fluorescent nanodiamonds to track a single stem cell implanted into the lungs of mice. The tracking capability gives researchers insight into site specific interactions of stem cells and their surrounding environment.