Scientists at UCLA have discovered a protein produced by a gene known as MLLT3 and its connection to the self-renewal of human blood stem cells. The scientists observed that activating the protein causes blood cells to self-renew at least twelvefold in laboratory conditions. The finding which was published in the journal Nature is very much significant as cancers such as leukemia can be effectively treated using blood stem cells, also known as Hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs), produced outside the human body. Moreover, it could serve as an alternative to existing treatment options for many inherited blood diseases as well as bone marrow transplants.
In Japan, scientists for the first time have treated a damaged cornea by using induced pluripotent stem cells (iPS) which is reprogrammed from adult cells.
It is a process that converts the cells into embryonic-like cells which can further develop into any type of human cells such as nerve, pancreatic, liver, and corneal cells. While iPS cells have great potential to treat many conditions, they are yet to make from just testing in laboratories to practicing in clinics.
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