Volume 2.07 | Feb 22

Pancreatic Cell News 2.07, February 22, 2011
     In this issue: Science News | Current Publications | Industry News | Policy News | Events
 
TOP STORY
Mapping of INS Promoter Interactions Reveals Its Role in Long-Range Regulation of SYT8 Transcription
Results reveal a nonredundant role for SYT8 in insulin secretion and indicate that the INS promoter acts from a distance to stimulate SYT8 transcription. This suggests a function for the INS promoter in coordinating insulin transcription and secretion through long-range regulation of SYT8 expression in human islets. [Nat Struct Mol Biol]

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SCIENCE NEWS

Protein Fuels Inflammation in Pancreatic and Breast Tumors
Researchers report that thymic stromal lymphopoietin derived from fibroblasts fuels Th2 inflammation in human pancreatic tumors. [Press release from ScienceDaily discussing online prepublication in the Journal of Experimental Medicine]

Whole Genome Sequencing Used to Help Inform Cancer Therapy
A male patient with pancreatic cancer was the first patient at Mayo Clinic to have whole genome sequencing performed on both his tumor and non-cancerous cells as part of a clinical research project. By comparing the tumor DNA to the patient’s normal DNA, researchers found genetic changes that were important in helping inform doctors about how best to plan the patient’s next treatment. [Translational Genomics Research Institute Press Release]

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CURRENT PUBLICATIONS (Ranked by Impact Factor of the Journal)

DIABETES

High Pancreatic n-3 Fatty Acids Prevent STZ-Induced Diabetes in Fat-1 Mice: Inflammatory Pathway Inhibition
Findings indicate that fat-1 mice were protected against multiple low-doses-streptozotocin (STZ)-induced diabetes and pointed out for the first time in vivo the beneficial effects of n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids at the pancreatic level, on each step of the development of the pathology — inflammation, beta cell damage — through cytokine response and lipid mediator production. [Diabetes]

GIP Does Not Potentiate the Antidiabetic Effects of GLP-1 in Hyperglycemic Patients with Type 2 Diabetes
Glucose-dependent insulinotropic polypeptide (GIP) is unable to further amplify the insulinotropic and glucose-lowering effects of glucagon-like peptide 1 (GLP-1) in type 2 diabetes. Rather, the suppression of glucagon by GLP-1 is antagonized by GIP. [Diabetes]

A Low Frequency of Pancreatic Islet Insulin-Expressing Cells Derived from Cord Blood Stem Cell Allografts in Humans
Cord blood stem cells have the capacity to differentiate into insulin-expressing cells in non-diabetic humans. It remains to be established whether these cells have the properties of beta cells. [Diabetologia]

TCR Bias of In Vivo Expanded T Cells in Pancreatic Islets and Spleen at the Onset in Human Type 1 Diabetes
To define the autoreactive T cell repertoire in human diabetes, researchers searched for intraislet monoclonal expansions from a recent onset in human pancreas to then trace them down to the patient’s peripheral blood and spleen. [J Immunol]

Nucleo-Cytosolic Shuttling of FOXO1 Directly Regulates Mouse INS2 But Not INS1 Gene Expression in Pancreatic Beta Cells (Min6)
Researchers sought to determine the mechanisms involved in glucose and insulin-stimulated nuclear shuttling of FoxO1 pancreatic beta cells and its consequences for preproinsulin gene expression. [J Biol Chem]

The Glial Glutamate Transporter 1 (GLT1) Is Expressed by Pancreatic Beta Cells and Prevents Glutamate-Induced Beta Cell Death
The present study identifies GLT1 as a new player in glutamate homeostasis and signaling in the islet of Langerhans and demonstrates that beta cells critically depend on its activity to control extracellular glutamate levels and cellular integrity. [J Biol Chem]

Chromatin Remodeling Resets the Immune System to Protect Against Autoimmune Diabetes in Mice
Results indicate that chromatin remodeling can lead to amelioration of diabetes by using multiple mechanisms including differential gene transcription. Thus, epigenetic modulation could be a novel therapeutic approach to block the transition from benign to frank diabetes. [Immunol Cell Biol]

Differentiation of Dental Pulp Stem Cells into Islet Like Aggregates
Results demonstrated for the first time that dental pulp stromal/stem cells could be differentiated into pancreatic cell lineage and offer an unconventional and non-controversial source of human tissue that could be used for autologous stem cell therapy in diabetes. [J Dent Res]

PANCREATIC CANCER

Intratumor T Helper Type 2 Cell Infiltrate Correlates with Cancer-Associated Fibroblast Thymic Stromal Lymphopoietin Production and Reduced Survival in Pancreatic Cancer
Pancreatic cancer is a very aggressive disease characterized by a marked desmoplasia with a predominant Th2 (GATA-3+) over Th1 (T-bet+) lymphoid infiltrate. Researchers found that the ratio of GATA-3+/T-bet+ tumor-infiltrating lymphoid cells is an independent predictive marker of patient survival. [J Exp Med]

Increased Incidence of Pancreatitis and Cancer Among Patients Given Glucagon Like Peptide-1 Based Therapy
The data are consistent with case reports and animal studies indicating an increased risk for pancreatitis with GLP-1 based therapy. The findings also raise caution about the potential long-term actions of these drugs to promote pancreatic cancer, and DPP-4 inhibition to increase risk for all cancers. [Gastroenterology]

Serum Biomarker Panels for the Detection of Pancreatic Cancer
The pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma-specific biomarker panels identified in this investigation warrant additional clinical validation to determine their role in screening targeted high-risk populations. [Clin Cancer Res]

Transient Silencing of Galectin-3 Expression Promotes Both In Vitro and In Vivo Drug-Induced Apoptosis of Human Pancreatic Carcinoma Cells
Results indicate that galectin-3 (gal-3)-mediated invasion via MMP-2 regulated by beta-catenin degradation is initiated by Akt phosphorylation in pancreatic cancer cells. The results suggest that gal-3 can be a novel therapeutic target in pancreatic cancer. [Clin Exp Metastasis]

INDUSTRY NEWS

Living Cell Technologies Welcomes Pharmaceutical Investor
Living Cell Technologies Limited, a global company pioneering the development of a cell implant therapy to treat diabetes, announced that a binding subscription agreement has been executed in relation to share placement with Jiangsu Aosaikang Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. [Living Cell Technologies Limited Press Release]

Oncolytics Biotech® Inc. Announces Start of Enrollment in Randomized Phase II Pancreatic Cancer Study
Oncolytics Biotech Inc. announced that enrollment has begun in a 2-Arm randomized Phase II study of carboplatin, paclitaxel plus REOLYSIN® versus carboplatin and paclitaxel alone in the first line treatment of patients with recurrent or metastatic pancreatic cancer. [Oncolytics Biotech Inc. Press Release]

Infinity Initiates Phase II Portion of Trial of IPI-926 in Pancreatic Cancer
Infinity Pharmaceuticals, Inc. announced the initiation of the randomized Phase II portion of the trial of IPI-926 in combination with gemcitabine (also known as Gemzar®) in patients with previously untreated, metastatic, pancreatic cancer. [Infinity Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Press Release]

Novo Nordisk Receives Subpoena in the U.S.
The office of the U.S. Attorney for the District of Massachusetts has served Novo Nordisk with a subpoena calling for the production of documents regarding potential criminal offences relating to the company’s marketing and promotion practices for the following products: NovoLog®, Levemir®, and Victoza®. [Novo Nordisk A/S Press Release]

POLICY NEWS

Statement Regarding Proposed Cuts in House FY 2011 Funding Bill
The American Diabetes Association is alarmed about the proposed cuts to federal health programs included in H.R.1, the Full-Year Continuing Resolution, 2011, and the threat that these cuts pose in the fight to stop diabetes. [American Diabetes Association, United States]

National Institutes of Health (United States)

Food and Drug Administration (United States)
 
Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research (United States)

European Medicines Agency (European Union)

Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (United Kingdom)

National Health Service (United Kingdom)

Therapeutic Goods Administration (Australia)

EVENTS

Visit our events page to see a complete list of events in the pancreatic cell community.

JOB OPPORTUNITIES

Lab Technologist – Human Embryonic and Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells (STEMCELL Technologies)

Postdoctoral Positions – Stem Cell Biology (Joslin Diabetes Center/Harvard Stem Cell Institute)

Manager Clinical Affairs (Bioheart, Inc.)

Process Technical Development Scientist (StemCells, Inc.)

Postdoctoral Position – Germline Stem Cells (R. L. Brinster, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of Pennsylvania)

Quality Assurance Specialist – Gene Transfer & Somatic Cell Engineering Facility (Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center)

Field Applications Specialist – Cell Therapy (Medical) (Pall Corporation)

Assistant Professor (University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, Center for Cellular and Molecular Engineering)

Postdoctoral Scientist (University of Oxford Nuffield Department of Surgical Sciences)

Chief, Division of Endocrinology (University of Florida/Shands)

Postdoctoral Research Fellowship in Diabetes/Cardiovascular Disease (Children’s Hospital Boston/Harvard Medical School)

Postdoctoral Research Fellow in Bioinformatics/Computational Biology – Diabetes (Lund University)

Postdoctoral Position in Biology (Inserm)

Postdoctoral Research Assistant (Queen Mary University of London)
 
Postdoctoral Research Fellow (Ontario Cancer Institute of University Health Network)

Postdoctoral Research Fellow (Medical College of Wisconsin)

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