Original concerns that cloning caused early-onset osteoarthritis in Dolly the sheep are unfounded
Scientists at Rutgers and other universities build technology that could lead to rapid discovery of new medicines and biomarkers hidden in genomes
Gene expression pinpoints multiple anomalies likely to lead to pregnancy failure for clones
Like great athletes and musicians, cells employed in cell-based assays or as expression systems for biopharmaceutical production are not born, but made. Cell lines that perform specifically and predictably arise from a population of cells that have undergone one or more genetic transformations (transfection) and are subsequently selected for desirable properties such as viability, protein or virus production; high culture density; or binding to drugs or antigens.
For years, researchers and patients have hoped that embryonic stem cells (ESCs)—capable of forming nearly any cell type in the body—could provide insight into numerous diseases perhaps even be used to treat them. Yet progress has been hampered by the inability to transfer research and tools from mouse ESC studies to their human counterparts, in part because human ESCs are “primed” and slightly less plastic than the mouse cells.
Researchers from the University of Southern California (USC) and the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) have demonstrated a technique for growing virtually pure samples of single-wall carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) with identical structures, a process they liken to "cloning" the nanotubes.