Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Researchers Develop T-cells From Human Embryonic Stem Cells, Raising Hopes For A Gene Therapy To Combat AIDS

Date:
July 5, 2006
Source:
University of California - Los Angeles
Summary:
Researchers from the UCLA AIDS Institute and the Institute for Stem Cell Biology and Medicine have demonstrated for the first time that human embryonic stem cells can be genetically manipulated and coaxed to develop into mature T-cells, raising hopes for a gene therapy to combat AIDS.

Researchers from the UCLA AIDS Institute and the Institute for Stem Cell Biology and Medicine have demonstrated for the first time that human embryonic stem cells can be genetically manipulated and coaxed to develop into mature T-cells, raising hopes for a gene therapy to combat AIDS.

Related Articles


The study, to be published the week of July 3 in the online edition of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, found that it is possible to convert human embryonic stem cells into blood-forming stem cells that in turn can differentiate into the helper T-cells that HIV specifically targets. T-cells are one of the body's main defenses against disease.

The results mark the first time that scientists have been able to derive T-cells out of human embryonic stem cells, said Zoran Galic, assistant research biologist, and lead researcher on the study.

"This tells you that you may be able to use human embryonic stem cells to treat T‑cell and other blood diseases. This could be a very important weapon in the fight against AIDS," Galic said.

In their study, the researchers cultured human embryonic stem cells, which were incubated on mouse bone marrow support cells, which in turn converted them into blood‑forming cells. Those cells were then injected into a human thymus gland that had been implanted in a mouse, and the thymus then changed those blood-forming cells into T-cells. Located just above the heart in humans, the thymus is the organ where T-cells develop. It gradually shrinks in adults, weakening the immune system over time.

These results indicate that it is possible to decipher the signals that control the development of embryonic stem cells into mature T-cells, said study co-author Jerome Zack, associate director of the UCLA AIDS Institute, and professor of medicine and of microbiology, immunology and molecular genetics at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA.

"That way we can eventually repopulate the immune system in patients needing T-cells," Zack said.

This in turn could give rise to gene therapy approaches to treat other diseases involving T-cells. In addition to HIV, for instance, the technique could be used to treat severe combined immunodeficiency, or the "bubble boy disease," which leaves its victims without a working immune system, forcing them to a life in an antiseptic, germ-free environment.

Other researchers who participated in this study are Scott G. Kitchen, Amelia Kacena, Aparna Subramanian, Bryan Burke and Ruth Cortado, all with the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA.

The National Institutes of Health funded the study.

Established in 1992, the UCLA AIDS Institute is a multidisciplinary think tank drawing on the skills of top-flight researchers in the worldwide fight against HIV and AIDS, the first cases of which were reported in 1981 by UCLA physicians. Institute members include researchers in virology and immunology, genetics, cancer, neurology, ophthalmology, epidemiology, social science, public health, nursing, and disease prevention. Their findings have led to advances in treating HIV as well as other diseases such as hepatitis B and C, influenza, and cancer.

The Institute for Stem Cell Biology and Medicine was launched on March 6, 2005, with a UCLA commitment of $20 million over five years. The institute brings together geneticists, engineers, ethicists, chemists, policy experts, pathologists, immunologists, oncologists, hematologists and scientists from other disciplines to uncover the mysteries of the growth and development of adult and embryonic stem cells. The institute is a collaboration of the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, UCLA's Jonsson Cancer Center, the UCLA Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Science, and the UCLA College of Letters and Science.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of California - Los Angeles. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University of California - Los Angeles. "Researchers Develop T-cells From Human Embryonic Stem Cells, Raising Hopes For A Gene Therapy To Combat AIDS." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 5 July 2006. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/07/060705083338.htm>.
University of California - Los Angeles. (2006, July 5). Researchers Develop T-cells From Human Embryonic Stem Cells, Raising Hopes For A Gene Therapy To Combat AIDS. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 31, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/07/060705083338.htm
University of California - Los Angeles. "Researchers Develop T-cells From Human Embryonic Stem Cells, Raising Hopes For A Gene Therapy To Combat AIDS." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/07/060705083338.htm (accessed October 31, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Friday, October 31, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Fauci Says Ebola Risk in US "essentially Zero"

Fauci Says Ebola Risk in US "essentially Zero"

AP (Oct. 30, 2014) — NIAID Director Anthony Fauci said the risk of Ebola becoming an epidemic in the U.S. is essentially zero Thursday at the Washington Ideas Forum. He also said an Ebola vaccine will be tested in West Africa in the next few months. (Oct. 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Nurse Defies Ebola Quarantine With Bike Ride

Nurse Defies Ebola Quarantine With Bike Ride

AP (Oct. 30, 2014) — A nurse who vowed to defy Maine's voluntary quarantine for health care workers who treated Ebola patients followed through on her promise Thursday, leaving her home for an hour-long bike ride. (Oct. 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Pot-Infused Edibles Raise Concerns in Colorado

Pot-Infused Edibles Raise Concerns in Colorado

AFP (Oct. 30, 2014) — Colorado may have legalized marijuana for recreational use, but the debate around the decision still continues, with a recent - failed - attempt to ban cannabis-infused edibles. Duration: 01:53 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
British Navy Ship Arrives in Sierra Leone With Ebola Aid

British Navy Ship Arrives in Sierra Leone With Ebola Aid

AFP (Oct. 30, 2014) — The British ship RFA ARGUS arrived in Sierra Leone to deliver supplies and equipment to help the fight against Ebola. Duration: 00:42 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins