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Welcome to USC Stem Cell, a university-wide initiative connecting researchers and highlighting the latest news in regenerative medicine across USC.

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March 24, 2015

The Doerr Stem Cell Challenge Grants 2015–2016

(Photo by Chris Shinn)

(Photo by Chris Shinn)

To stimulate interdisciplinary stem cell research across USC

Overview

USC Stem Cell invites applications for the Doerr Stem Cell Challenge Grants. The goal of the program is to stimulate new interdisciplinary stem cell research across the USC community, and to provide a means of enhancing student/postdoc creativity and independence. Proposals should be initiated by graduate students and/or postdoctoral fellows. An additional goal of this program is to stimulate future K- or F-series NIH training grant proposals, or other parent-lab collaborative grant opportunities.

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March 24, 2015

Discovery could lead to biological treatment for common birth defect

Yang Chai (Photo courtesy of the Ostrow School of Dentistry of USC)

Yang Chai (Photo courtesy of the Ostrow School of Dentistry of USC)

By John Hobbs

Throughout every human and animal’s body, stem cell populations are responsible for the growth, regeneration and repair of tissues. While the power of some types of stem cells is already being used in cutting-edge medicine, there is still much to discover before we truly unlock their potential.

Researchers at the Ostrow School of Dentistry of USC have discovered which stem cells are responsible for the growth of craniofacial bones in mice — a finding that could have a profound impact on the understanding and treatment of craniosynostosis, a birth defect that can lead to an array of physical and intellectual disabilities in humans.

In an article published in the April 2015 issue of Nature Cell Biology, Yang Chai, a member of the USC Stem Cell Executive Committee and holder of the George and Mary Lou Boone Chair of Craniofacial Biology, describes how he and postdoctoral fellow Hu Zhao identified a population of Gli1+ stem cells within the mesenchyme of tissue between the bones of the skull, known as cranial sutures.

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