Volume 1.08 | Jun 15

Pancreatic Cell News 1.09, June 22, 2010.

TOP STORY

New Role for Ancient Clock
Researchers knocked out the clock genes in islet beta cells in mice and found the animals developed impaired glucose tolerance and abnormally low levels of insulin and went on to develop diabetes. [Press release from Northwestern University discussing online prepublication in Nature]

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SCIENCE NEWS

Vitamin D Status Is Not Associated with Risk for Less Common Cancers
Despite hopes that higher blood levels of vitamin D might reduce cancer risk, a large study finds no protective effect against non-Hodgkin lymphoma or cancer of the endometrium, esophagus, stomach, kidney, ovary, or pancreas. [Press release from the National Institutes of Health discussing online prepublication in the American Journal of Epidemiology]

Gene Therapy Reverses Type 1 Diabetes in Mice
Using gene therapy, researchers from Baylor College of Medicine in Houston tried to counter the two defects that cause type 1 diabetes: autoimmune attack and destruction of the insulin-producing beta cells. [Press release from Newswise discussing research presented at The Endocrine Society’s 92nd Annual Meeting]

Implantable Electrodes Target Pancreatic Cancer
Researchers at the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill have designed an implant that precisely supplies chemotherapy drugs to hard-to-reach pancreatic tumors using an electric field. [Press release from MIT Technology Review discussing research presented at the Koch Institute 2010 Symposium on Integrative Approaches to Cancer]

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CURRENT PUBLICATIONS (Ranked by Impact Factor of the Journal)

DIABETES

Disruption of the Clock Components CLOCK and BMAL1 Leads to Hypoinsulinaemia and Diabetes
Results demonstrate a role for the beta cell clock in coordinating insulin secretion with the sleep-wake cycle, and reveal that ablation of the pancreatic clock can trigger the onset of diabetes mellitus. [Nature]

BH3 Mimetics Antagonizing Restricted Prosurvival Bcl-2 Proteins Represent Another Class of Selective Immune Modulatory Drugs
Notably, ABT-737, a mimetic of the killer BH3 domain of the Bcl-2 family of proteins, was sufficiently immunomodulatory to allow long-term survival of pancreatic allografts, reversing established diabetes in this model. [Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A]

Self-Assembling Nanostructures to Deliver Angiogenic Factors to Pancreatic Islets
The infiltration of bioactive nanofibers in the interior of islets as an artificial extracellular matrix can improve cell viability and function in vitro and enhance their vascularization in the presence of growth factors such as FGF2 and VEGF. [Biomaterials]

The Atrial Natriuretic Peptide and Guanylyl Cyclase-A System Modulates Pancreatic Beta Cell Function
Results show a direct effect of the guanylyl cyclase-A receptor in regulating glucose-stimulated insulin secretion and beta cell mass. [Endocrinology]

Cellular Reprogramming of Human Amniotic Fluid Cells to Express Insulin
Human amniotic fluid cells could be reprogrammed to express key beta cell proteins, however insulin gene expression was insufficient to reverse hyperglycemia in diabetic animals. [Differentiation]

Reduced Insulin Secretion in Protein Malnourished Mice Is Associated with Multiple Changes in the Beta Cell Stimulus-Secretion Coupling
A low-protein diet leads to several alterations in the stimulus-secretion coupling of pancreatic beta cells that might explain the diminished insulin secretion in response to glucose in this malnutrition state. [Endocrinology]

PANCREATIC CANCER

Locus Co-Occupancy, Nucleosome Positioning, and H3k4me1 Regulate the Functionality of FOXA2-, HNF4A-, and PDX1-Bound Loci in Islets and Liver
To gain insight into the transcriptional networks regulating the function of the liver and pancreas, researchers globally identify binding sites for FOXA2 in adult mouse islets and liver, PDX1 in islets, and HNF4A in liver. [Genome Res]

Pancreatic Cancers Epigenetically Silence SIP1 and Hypomethylate and Overexpress miR-200a/200b in Association with Elevated Circulating miR-200a and miR-200b Levels
Most pancreatic cancers display hypomethylation and overexpression of miR-200a and miR-200b, silencing of SIP1 by promoter methylation, and retention of E-cadherin expression. [Cancer Res]

Circulating 25-Hydroxyvitamin D and Risk of Pancreatic Cancer: Cohort Consortium Vitamin D Pooling Project of Rarer Cancers
No significant associations were observed for participants with lower 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25(OH)D) status. However, a high 25(OH)D concentration was associated with a statistically significant two-fold increase in pancreatic cancer risk overall. [Am J Epidemiol]

Elevated Level of Anterior Gradient-2 in Pancreatic Juice from Patients with Pre-Malignant Pancreatic Neoplasia
Results suggest that elevation of anterior gradient-2 levels in pancreatic juice occurs in early pancreatic cancer progression and could be further investigated as a potential candidate juice biomarker for early detection of pancreatic cancer. [Mol Cancer]

Establishment and Characterization of a New Human Pancreatic Adenocarcinoma Cell Line with High Metastatic Potential to the Lung
The established pancreatic cancer cell line PaCa 5061 and injection into pfp/rag2 mice can be used as a new model for studying various aspects of the biology of human pancreatic cancer and potential treatment approaches for the disease. [BMC Cancer]

INDUSTRY NEWS

Diamyd Medical Signs Agreement for Diabetes Therapy
Diamyd Medical AB has signed an agreement with Ortho-McNeil-Janssen Pharmaceuticals, Inc. to develop and commercialize the Diamyd® diabetes therapy. [Diamyd Medical Press Release]

Metabolex Enters Into Type 2 Diabetes Development and License Agreement
Metabolex, Inc. announced that they have entered into a global development and license agreement with Ortho-McNeil-Janssen Pharmaceuticals, Inc. to further develop and discover compounds for the treatment of type 2 diabetes and other disorders. [Metabolex, Inc. Press Release]

OncoMed Pharmaceuticals and Bayer Schering Pharma Announce Strategic Alliance to Develop Anti-Cancer Stem Cell Therapeutics
OncoMed Pharmaceuticals, Inc. and Bayer Schering Pharma AG, Germany, announced a global strategic alliance to discover, develop and commercialize novel anti-cancer stem cell therapeutics targeting the Wnt signaling pathway. [OncoMed Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Press Release]

Neurocrine Biosciences Announces a Worldwide Collaboration With Boehringer Ingelheim to Research and Develop GPR119 Agonists for Type 2 Diabetes
Neurocrine Biosciences, Inc. announced that they have established a worldwide collaboration with Boehringer Ingelheim to research and develop small molecule GPR119 agonists for the treatment of type 2 diabetes and other indications. [Neurocrine Biosciences, Inc. Press Release]

Living Cell Technologies Works with New Zealand Government on Animal Derived Biologics
Cell implant company Living Cell Technologies Limited announced it has started working from an animal-derived therapeutics project with the New Zealand government’s investment promotion agency, Investment New Zealand (a division of New Zealand Trade & Enterprise). [Living Cell Technologies Limited Press Release]

Valeant and Biovail Agree to Merge
Valeant and Biovail announced that both companies’ Boards of Directors have unanimously approved a definitive merger agreement under which the companies would combine to generate enhanced value for stockholders. The combined company will be called Valeant Pharmaceuticals International, Inc. [Biovail Corporation Press Release]

Wisconsin Governor Jim Doyle and California’s State Stem Cell Agency Sign Declaration Of Cooperation to Advance Stem Cell Research Toward Cures
Wisconsin Governor Jim Doyle and the Chair of the Governing Board of the California state stem cell agency, Robert Klein, signed a Declaration of Cooperation that aims to create a framework for joint funding between researchers in the two states and to accelerate the pace of development of cellular therapies to reach patients. [California Institute for Regenerative Medicine Press Release]

DURATION-4 Study Results: BYDUREON Efficacy and Tolerability Profile Extended to Monotherapy Treatment
Amylin Pharmaceuticals, Inc., Eli Lilly and Company and Alkermes, Inc. announced results from DURATION-4, the fourth in a series of studies designed to test the superiority of BYDUREON™ (exenatide extended-release for injectable suspension), an investigational type 2 diabetes therapy, as compared to other type 2 diabetes medications. [Amylin Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Press Release]

Zydus’ Novel Orally Administered GLP-1 Agonist – ‘ZYOG1’ to Treat Diabetes and Obesity Enters Phase I Clinical Trial
Zydus Cadila has received Phase I clinical trial permission from the Drugs Controller General of India for ZYOG1 – a novel glucagon like peptide-1 (GLP-1) agonist. [Zydus Cadila Press Release]

Protea and Mayoly-Spindler Announce Human Clinical Trial for Lipase Biopharmaceutical
The goal of the clinical trial is to demonstrate safety and proof-of-concept data for the recombinant lipase as treatment for chronic pancreatitis. [BusinessWire]

Eurand Announces Data on Switching Cystic Fibrosis Patients With Exocrine Pancreatic Insufficiency From Unapproved PEPs to FDA-Approved ZENPEP®
Eurand Pharmaceuticals, Inc. announced additional data from a post-hoc analysis of a Phase III clinical trial with ZENPEP® (pancrelipase) Delayed-Release Capsules, an FDA-approved pancreatic enzyme product for the treatment of exocrine pancreatic insufficiency in patients with cystic fibrosis or other conditions. [Eurand Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Press Release]

U.S. Biotech Companies Begin Scramble for $1 Billion Federal Program
A $1 billion tax-credit program to revive the languishing U.S. biotech industry, the Therapeutic Discovery Project Program, opened for applications. [ScienceInsider]

POLICY NEWS

The Path to Personalized Medicine
The leaders of the National Institutes of Health and the Food and Drug Administration have a shared vision of personalized medicine and the scientific and regulatory structure needed to support its growth. Together, they have been focusing on the best ways to develop new therapies and optimize prescribing by steering patients to the right drug at the right dose at the right time. [Food and Drug Administration and the National Institutes of Health, United States]

Nearly 500 Pancreatic Cancer Advocates Meet With Members of Congress to Urge Swift Action Against the Fourth Leading Cause of Cancer Death
Nearly 500 pancreatic cancer advocates from across the United States will meet with members of Congress to call for congressional action to ensure progress is made against the fourth leading cause of cancer death in our country by co-sponsoring the Pancreatic Cancer Research and Education Act. [Congress, United States]

FDA Pushes Orphan Drug Research
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) published a list of 235 treatments that may have benefit in rare disorders and already have marketing clearance for other uses. [Food and Drug Administration, United States]

New Videos Reveal How NIH Identifies the Most Promising Research Applications
The National Institutes of Health’s (NIH) Center for Scientific Review released a new video to show new applicants and others how NIH assesses over 80,000 grant applications each year to help find those with the most merit. [National Institutes of Health, United States]

Notice of Intent to Publish a Request for Applications for NIDDK Centers for Diabetes Translation Research (P30) (NOT-DK-10-006)  [National Institutes of Health, United States]

Submission for Office of Management and Budget Review; Comment Request; National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases Information Clearinghouses  Customer Satisfaction Survey [National Institutes of Health, United States]

EVENTS

70th Scientific Sessions of the American Diabetes Association
June 25-29, 2010
Orlando, United States

21st Meeting of the European Association for Cancer Research (EACR) 
June 26-29, 2010
Oslo, Norway

United Kingdom National Stem Cell Network (UKNSCN) Third Annual Scientific Conference
July 12-14, 2010
Nottingham, United Kingdom

2010 World Cancer Congress
August 18-21, 2010
Shenzhen, China

Select Biosciences Inaugural Cellular Therapy Summit
August 24-25, 2010
Edinburgh, Scotland

The European Molecular Biology Organization (EMBO) Meeting – Advancing the Life Sciences
September 4-7, 2010
Barcelona, Spain

The Association of Upper Gastrointestinal Surgeons of Great Britain and Ireland (AUGIS) 2010 Scientific Meeting 
September 9-10, 2010
Oxford, United Kingdom

Stem Cells USA & Regenerative Medicine Congress 2010
September 13-15, 2010
Philadelphia, United States 

Annual Human Proteome Organization (HUPO) World Congress
September 19-23, 2010
Sydney, Australia

Institute of Medicine – University of Illinois at Chicago Midwest Conference on Diabetes and Obesity
September 21, 2010
Chicago, United States

35th European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) Congress
October 8-12, 2010
Milan, Italy

Fraunhofer Life Science Symposium 2010
October 29-30, 2010
Leipzig, Germany

2010 American Pancreatic Association (APA) Annual Meeting
November 3-6, 2010
Chicago, United States

Select Biosciences International Forum on Stem Cells
November 12-13, 2010
Tianjin, China


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