Volume 2.05 | Feb 10

     In this issue: Science News | Current Publications | Industry News | Policy News | Events
 
TOP STORY
Mechanical Properties and In Vivo Behavior of a Biodegradable Synthetic Polymer Microfiber-Extracellular Matrix Hydrogel Biohybrid Scaffold
A biohybrid composite consisting of extracellular matrix gel from porcine dermal tissue and biodegradable elastomeric fibers was generated and evaluated for soft tissue applications. [Biomaterials]

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SCIENCE NEWS

IRSp53 Keeps ECM Signaling Up to Par
Par1b controls cell polarity by phosphorylating an actin-regulatory protein to inhibit cells’ interactions with the extracellular matrix (ECM), researchers reveal. [Press release from Rockefeller University Press discussing online prepublication in the Journal of Cell Biology]

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CURRENT PUBLICATIONS (Ranked by Impact Factor of the Journal)

The Serine/Threonine Kinase Par1b Regulates Epithelial Lumen Polarity via IRSp53-Mediated Cell-ECM Signaling
Researchers demonstrate that Par1b regulates cell-extracellular matrix (ECM) signaling in kidney-derived Madin-Darby canine kidney cells and identified the rho-guanosine triphosphatase adaptor and scaffolding protein IRSp53 as a Par1b substrate involved in this pathway. [J Cell Biol]

Transparent, Tough Collagen Laminates Prepared by Oriented Flow Casting, Multi-Cyclic Vitrification and Chemical Cross-Linking
The study demonstrates a two-step process for obtaining structurally mimicking laminates in natural fibrous tissues with good optical and mechanical characters from purified-clinically-safe collagen molecules. [Biomaterials]

Engineering Fibrinogen-Binding VSV-G Envelope for Spatially- and Cell-Controlled Lentivirus Delivery Through Fibrin Hydrogels
Gene transfer in fibrin gels was strongly dependent on matrix degradation by target cells but a fraction of lentiviral particles diffused out of the gels over time compromising spatial control of gene transfer. To overcome this challenge, researchers engineered lentiviral particles that bind covalently to fibrin during polymerization. [Biomaterials]

TGF(Beta)- and Bleomycin-Induced Extracellular Matrix Synthesis Is Mediated Through Akt and Mammalian Target of Rapamycin (mTOR)
Researchers investigated the importance of Akt1 in TGF(beta)- and bleomycin-induced synthesis and secretion of extracellular matrix proteins by fibroblasts. [J Cell Physiol]

Noninvasive Multimodal Evaluation of Bioengineered Cartilage Constructs Combining Time-Resolved Fluorescence and Ultrasound Imaging
Using a prototype system combining time-resolved fluorescence spectroscopy, FLIM, and UBM, researchers measured changes in extracellular matrix content occurring during chondrogenic differentiation of equine adipose stem cells on 3D biodegradable matrices. [Tissue Eng Part C Methods]

Pectin-Based Injectable Biomaterials for Bone Tissue Engineering
In this work, for the first time, pectin, modified with an RGD-containing oligopeptide or not, is used as an extracellular matrix alternative to immobilize cells for bone tissue regeneration. [Biomacromolecules]

Biodegradable and Biocompatible Synthetic Saccharide-Peptide Hydrogels for Three-Dimensional Stem Cell Culture
Saccharide-peptide hydrogels have been developed as new synthetic extracellular matrices for regenerative medicine applications. In this work, researchers have expanded on their previously reported system and applied copolymerization of cysteine and vinyl sulfone-functionalized saccharide-peptide polymers via Michael-type addition for encapsulation and 3D culture of cells. [Biomacromolecules]

Initial Cell Pre-Cultivation Can Maximize ECM Mineralization by Human Mesenchymal Stem Cells on Silk Fibroin Scaffolds
Researchers investigated the influence of a range of pre-culture durations for human bone marrow derived mesenchymal stem cells before inducing differentiation into osteoblast-like cells. The aim was to find the condition that lead to maximal extracellular matrix mineralization both in terms of amount and best distribution. [Acta Biomater]

Adipose Progenitor Cells Increase Fibronectin Matrix Strain and Unfolding in Breast Tumors
Scientists utilized a combination of biochemical and physical science tools to evaluate whether paracrine signaling between breast cancer cells and adipose progenitor cells regulates fibronectin matrix assembly and stiffness enhancement in the tumor stroma. [Phys Biol]

Improved Cellular Response on Multiwalled Carbon Nanotube-Incorporated Electrospun Polyvinyl Alcohol/Chitosan Nanofibrous Scaffolds
Results from this study suggest that multiwalled carbon nanotube -incorporated polyvinyl alcohol/chitosan nanofibrous scaffolds with small diameters (around 160 nm) and high porosity can mimic the natural extracellular matrix well, and potentially provide many possibilities for applications in the fields of tissue engineering and regenerative medicine. [Colloid Surface B]

INDUSTRY NEWS

RXi Pharmaceuticals Initiates Development Program for Dermal Anti-Scarring Product Candidate
RXi Pharmaceuticals Corporation announced further details regarding RXI-109, the company’s dermal anti-scarring candidate. [RXi Pharmaceuticals Corporation Press Release]

RegeneRx Receives Notice of Australian Patent to be Granted for the Use of T(Beta)4 to Prevent Scarring and Fibrosis
RegeneRx Biopharmaceuticals, Inc. announced that the Company has received notice from the Australian Patent and Trademark Office that it intends to approve its patent application for the use of thymosin beta 4 (T(beta)4), its analogues, isoforms, and other derivatives, for preventing extracellular matrix buildup that may occur from injuries or diseases of the heart, skin, brain, or eye, among others. [RegeneRx Biopharmaceuticals, Inc. Press Release]

Enabling the Next Biomedical Revolution
In his State of the Union address President Obama singled out biomedical innovation as a key driver of America’s future prosperity. This sector has indeed generated tens of thousands of jobs, attracted billions in investment and created advanced medical treatments for Americans. [Forbes]

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)

Therapeutic Goods Administration (Australia)

EVENTS

NEW BioInterface 2011 Symposium and Workshop
October 24-26, 2011
Bloomington, United States

NEW World Conference on Regenerative Medicine 2011
November 2-4, 2011
Leipzig, Germany

Visit our events page to see a complete list of events in the extracellular matrix community.

JOB OPPORTUNITIES

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

Lab Technologist – Tissue Culture (STEMCELL Technologies)

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

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

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

Research Assistant/Fellow in Biomedical Engineering (University of Glasgow)

Postdoctoral Fellow (Thomas Jefferson University)

Research Associate (Imperial College London)

Postdoctoral Researcher (University of California – Irvine)

Postdoctoral Fellow in Systems Microscopy of Cell Migration (Karolinska Institutet)

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