Corporate Banner
Satellite Banner
Stem Cells, Cellular Therapy & Biobanking
>
Scientific Community
 
Become a Member | Sign in
Home>News>This Article
  News
Return

One of the Key Circuits in Regulating Genes Involved in Producing Blood Stem cells is Deciphered

Published: Friday, February 01, 2013
Last Updated: Friday, February 01, 2013
Bookmark and Share
The finding will, in the future, allow obtaining cells in a lab for therapeutic purposes.

Researchers from the group on stem cells and cancer at IMIM (Hospital del Mar Medical Research Institute) have deciphered one of the gene regulation circuits which would make it possible to generate hematopoietic blood cells, i.e. blood tissue stem cells. This finding is essential to generate these cells in a laboratory in the future, a therapy that could benefit patients with leukaemia or other diseases who need a transplant and who, in many cases, do not have a compatible donor.

In the process of generating stem cells, many molecule signals intervene which, through a regulating circuit are induced at a certain moment and remain active during a specific time until they switch off so these cells can differentiate. Anna Bigas, the coordinator of the research group on stem cells and cancer at IMIM explains: “We discovered that the Notch protein, which is involved in the development of most tissues, is responsible for activating the gene GATA2 which is necessary to generate hematopoietic stem cells; at the same time, it induces the reproduction of its own repressor, HES-1”. The team lead by Bigas has also shown that this regulating circuit allows the limited production of GATA2, and this is essential for the production of hematopoietic stem cells.

The study was developed over 4 years and consisted in performing a large number of experiments with the collaboration of groups from Japan, Holland and the USA. On the one hand, researchers identified the mechanism regulating the gene GATA2 in hematopoietic stem cells of a mouse embryo and, on the other hand, they identified DNA sequences regulating this gene; i.e. the sequences of gene GATA2 where the Notch protein and the repressor HES-1 bind. After generating several mutations in these sequences, researchers saw that if the Notch protein does not bind to GATA 2, the gene is not activated, whereas if it’s the repressor HES-1 that doesn’t bind to it, then there is an over-production of the protein GATA 2. Researchers also proved that embryos where HES-1 has been eliminated may not generate functional hematopoietic stem cells due to excessive production of GATA 2.

One of the difficulties encountered by the researchers when carrying out this study is that, from a methodological approach, some of the required techniques were not possible to carry out at IMIM’s laboratories, and for this reason collaboration was established with the group lead by Prof. Masayuki Yamamoto at the Tohoku University School of Medicine in Sendai, Japan. The first signatory of the paper, Dr. Jordi Grau, travelled to Sendai for four months but, due to the earthquake in 2011, it was impossible to conclude the task. It was thanks to the collaborations established with the group lead by Prof. Elaine Dzierzak at the Erasmus University in Rotterdam that it was finally possible to continue with the project.

The process of generating stem cells specifically from tissue in a laboratory is being studied in many laboratories around the world, but this has not yet been achieved. This shows that we need further research into the mechanisms used be the embryo to generate these cells and which regulating genes are involved in this process. “We discovered a basic circuit but there are still many more to discover. Our end objective is to validate our results with cells coming from mouse embryonic stem cells and then being able to use this knowledge to generate human hematopoietic stem cells in a laboratory for therapeutic purposes. These cells could then be used for patients needing a hematologic transplant and do not have a compatible donor” concludes Dr. Bigas.


Further Information

Join For Free

Access to this exclusive content is for Technology Networks Premium members only.

Join Technology Networks Premium for free access to:

  • Exclusive articles
  • Presentations from international conferences
  • Over 3,000+ scientific posters on ePosters
  • More than 4,500+ scientific videos on LabTube
  • 35 community eNewsletters


Sign In



Forgotten your details? Click Here
If you are not a member you can join here

*Please note: By logging into TechnologyNetworks.com you agree to accept the use of cookies. To find out more about the cookies we use and how to delete them, see our privacy policy.


Scientific News
Heart Defect Prediction Technology Could Lead to Earlier, More Informed Treatment
Experimental method uses genetics-guided biomechanics, patient-specific stem cells.
Immune Cells Remember Their First Meal
Scientists at the University of Bristol have identified the trigger for immune cells' inflammatory response – a discovery that may pave the way for new treatments for many human diseases.
Cancer Cells Coordinate to Form Roving Clusters
Rice University scientists identify ‘smoking gun’ in metastasis of hybrid cells.
Bio-Mimicry Method For Preparing & Labeling Stem Cells Developed
Method allows researchers to prepare mesenchymal stem cells and monitor them using MRI.
Transcription Factor Isoforms Implicated in Colon Diseases
UC Riverside study explains how distribution of two forms of a transcription factor in the colon influence risk of disease.
New Bio-Glass Could Make it Possible to Re-Grow or Replace Cartilage
Researchers at Imperial College London have developed a material that can mimic cartilage and potentially encourage it to re-grow.
Stem Cell Advance Could Be Key Step Toward Treating Deadly Blood Diseases
UCLA scientists get closer to creating blood stem cells in the lab.
Harnessing Engineered Slippery Surfaces For Tissue Repair
A new method could facilitate the transfer of intact regenerating cell sheets from the culture dish to damaged tissues in patients.
Brazilian Zika Virus Strain Causes Birth Defects in Experimental Models
First direct experimental proof of causal effect, researchers say.
Stem Cell Gene Therapy For Fatal Childhood Disease Ready For Human Trial
A pioneering approach for Sanfilippo disease, a genetic condition for which there is no effective treatment, will now be trialled in humans.
SELECTBIO

SELECTBIO Market Reports
Go to LabTube
Go to eposters
 
Access to the latest scientific news
Exclusive articles
Upload and share your posters on ePosters
Latest presentations and webinars
View a library of 1,800+ scientific and medical posters
3,000+ scientific and medical posters
A library of 2,500+ scientific videos on LabTube
4,500+ scientific videos
Close
Premium CrownJOIN TECHNOLOGY NETWORKS PREMIUM FOR FREE!