Seminars and Events

Past Events

Category Seminar
Date and Time 2006-09-12 16:00 - 17:00
Venue Seminar Room A7F
Speaker Stephen Minger
Affiliation King's College London
Title Therapeutic Applications of Human Embryonic Stem Cells
Poster click here to download(PDF)
Host Shinichi Nishikawa
Summary There has been significant interest in the therapeutic and scientific potential of human embryonic stem (ES) cells since they were first isolated in 1998. If human ES cells could be differentiated into suitable cell types, stem cells might be used in cell replacement therapies for degenerative diseases such as Type Ι diabetes and Parkinson's disease, or to repopulate the heart following myocardial damage. However, there is a significant shortage of high quality therapeutic-grade human ES cell lines and few research groups have experience in the propagation and manipulation of these cells. It is thus essential for the development of human stem cell technology, and the larger goal of cellular replacement therapy for human disease, that new clinical-grade human cell lines are generated.

We are addressing this important issue using the combined expertise of the Stem Cell Biology Laboratory and the Assisted Conception Unit at King's College London. With local ethical approval and under licence from the UK Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority, we have been establishing high quality human ES cell lines from a novel source of human embryos. To date, we have derived four human ES cell lines, including one that encodes the most common genetic mutation resulting in Cystic Fibrosis. In addition, much of our work is focused on the generation of human ES cell-derived, therapeutically important cell populations including neural, retinal, pancreatic, cardiac and endothelial stem cells. The tightly regulated yet permissive environment in the UK for human stem cell research, coupled with the government's commitment to the establishment of a centralised stem cell bank offers the UK the opportunity to be a leading player in the field of human regenerative medicine.