Volume 3.50 | Dec 18

Pancreatic Cell News 3.50 December 18, 2012
     In this issue: Publications | Industry News | Policy News | Events | Jobs 
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TOP STORY
MicroRNA-7 Regulates the mTOR Pathway and Proliferation in Adult Pancreatic β-Cells
Researchers showed that the microRNA (miR)-7/7ab family member miR-7a is enriched in mouse adult pancreatic islets compared with miR-7b. Remarkably, miR-7a targets five components of the mTOR signaling pathway. Furthermore, inhibition of miR-7a activates mTOR signaling and promotes adult β-cell replication in mouse primary islets, which can be reversed by the treatment with mTOR inhibitor, rapamycin. [Diabetes] Abstract

Differentiation Doesn't Have to be Difficult. Get Easy, Standardized hPSC Differentiation
PUBLICATIONS (Ranked by impact factor of the journal)

DIABETES

Autonomous and Self-Sustained Circadian Oscillators Displayed in Human Islet Cells
Following on from the emerging importance of the pancreas circadian clock on islet function and the development of type 2 diabetes in rodent models, the authors examined circadian gene expression in human islets. The oscillator properties were assessed in intact islets as well as in beta cells. [Diabetologia]
Full Article

Identification and Analysis of Murine Pancreatic Islet Enhancers
The authors aimed to identify enhancers in pancreatic islets, to understand their developmental ontologies, and to identify enhancers unique to islets to increase their understanding of islet-specific gene expression. [Diabetologia] Abstract

CART Protects Beta Cells against Glucotoxicity and Increases Cell Proliferation
Investigators examined the effect of exogenous cocaine and amphetamine-regulated transcript (CART) 55-102 on beta cell viability and dissected its signaling mechanisms. Evaluation of DNA fragmentation and chromatin condensation revealed that CART 55-102 reduced glucotoxicity-induced apoptosis in both INS-1 cells and isolated rat islets. [J Biol Chem] Abstract | Full Article

Stellate Cells from Rat Pancreas Are Stem Cells and Can Contribute to Liver Regeneration
Scientists report that rat pancreatic stellate cells (PSC), which are thought to contribute to pancreatic fibrosis, have stem cell characteristics. PSC reside in islets and between acini and display a gene expression pattern similar to umbilical cord blood stem cells and mesenchymal stem cells. [PLoS One] Full Article

The Transcription Factor Myt3 Acts as a Pro-Survival Factor in β-Cells
Researchers sought to determine the expression and regulation of Myt3 in islets and to determine its significance in regulating islet function and survival. [PLoS One] Full Article


PANCREATIC CANCER

Collagen Triple Helix Repeat Containing-1 Promotes Pancreatic Cancer Progression by Regulating Migration and Adhesion of Tumor Cells
The authors showed that collagen triple helix repeat containing-1 (CTHRC1) is highly expressed in human pancreatic cancer tissues and plays a role in the progression and metastasis of the disease. CTHRC1 promoted primary tumor growth and metastatic spread of cancer cells to distant organs in orthotopic xenograft tumor mouse models. [Carcinogenesis] Abstract

Autophagy Induced by p53-Reactivating Molecules Protects Pancreatic Cancer Cells from Apoptosis
TP53 mutations compromising p53 transcriptional function occur in more than 50% of human cancers and render cancer cells more resistant to conventional therapy. Efforts have been addressed to identify p53-reactivating molecules able to restore the wild-type transcriptionally competent conformation of the mutated proteins. Here, scientists showed that two of these compounds induce cell growth inhibition, apoptosis, and autophagy by activating p53/DNA binding and p53 phosphorylation, without affecting the total p53 amount. [Apoptosis] Abstract

Targeting of MAPK-Associated Molecules Identifies SON as a Prime Target to Attenuate the Proliferation and Tumorigenicity of Pancreatic Cancer Cells
Activation of mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) is associated with the upregulation of genes implicated in the proliferation and survival of pancreatic cancer cells. Scientists hypothesized that knockdown of these MAPK-associated molecules could produce notable anticancer phenotypes. [Mol Cancer] Abstract | Full Article

Therapeutic Effect of c-Jun N-Terminal Kinase Inhibition on Pancreatic Cancer
Researchers assessed the involvement of c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK) in the development of pancreatic cancer and investigated the therapeutic effect of JNK inhibitors on this deadly cancer. Small interfering RNAs against JNK or the JNK inhibitor SP600125 were used to examine the role of JNK in cellular proliferation and the cell cycles of pancreatic cancer cell lines. [Cancer Sci] Abstract

New: Directed Differentiation of Pluripotent Stem Cells

INDUSTRY NEWS

Poxel Raises €13 Million to Progress Imeglimin Development to Treat Type 2 Diabetes
Poxel SA announced that it has raised €13 million in a Series B round. The financing was led by Edmond de Rothschild Investment Partners and included all existing investors: InnoBio fund managed by CDC Entreprises within FSI France Investment program; and Omnes Capital. A significant part of the funds will be used to confirm efficacy data of the company’s lead program, Imeglimin, a novel anti-diabetic agent. [Poxel SA] Press Release

Swift Transportation Donates More than $15,000 to The Waylon Fund
Swift Charities, the charitable arm of Swift Transportation, donated $15,262 to The Waylon Jennings Fund for Diabetes Research at the Translational Genomics Research Institute. [The Translational Genomics Research Institute] Press Release

New Facility Will Bridge Research and Stem Cell Therapies
The University of Rochester Medical Center has opened the doors on a new facility that will enable researchers to create, study, and ultimately use stem cells and their offspring in early-phase experimental human therapies. The Upstate Stem Cell cGMP Facility was created with $3.5 million in support from the Empire State Stem Cell Board. [University of Rochester Medical Center] Press Release

POLICY NEWS

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

NEW Stem Cell Regulation in Homeostasis and Disease
February 24-March 1, 2013
Banff, Canada

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

JOB OPPORTUNITIES

Research Technologist – Cell Separation (STEMCELL Technologies, Inc.)

Product Quality Scientist (STEMCELL Technologies, Inc.)

Scientist – Endothelial Cell Research (STEMCELL Technologies, Inc.)

Scientist or Engineer – hPSC Bioengineer (STEMCELL Technologies, Inc.)


Postdoctoral Position – Beta Cell Biology and Translational Research (University of California, Los Angeles)

Postdoctoral Position – Tumor Stem Cells (Cancer Institute of New Jersey)

Postdoctoral Position – In Vivo Drug Discovery Using Zebrafish (Karolinska Institute)


Postdoctoral Position – Pancreatic Cancer Research (Ohio State University – Comprehensive Cancer Center)

Postdoctoral Position – Pancreatic/Liver Cell Differentiation in Development and Cancer (de Duve Institute)

Postdoctoral Position – Diabetes and Beta-Cell Regeneration in Mice (Karolinska Institute)


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