McMaster University

McMaster University

Stem Cell and Cancer Research Institute (SCC-RI)

McMaster's Stem Cell and Cancer Research Institute (SCC-RI) explores the underlying cellular and molecular origins that initiate human cancer by employing human stem cells as a model system. The Institute's impressive shared facilities are designed to help mitigate the high cost of human stem cell research that has made entry into the field almost prohibitive for investigators in Canada.

On the cutting edge of human stem cell research, our team of scientists integrates expertise in epigenetics, signalling pathways, neural cancer stem cells, human leukemia and pluripotent stem cells. Our ground-breaking research complements the efforts of other stem cell programs and centres in Canada and around the world.

With its particular focus in human stem cell research, the SCC-RI provides interested graduate students and postdoctoral fellows an exciting opportunity to pursue this specialized training in Canada. The Institute will also provide an open forum to educate the public about this important research and work with sectors developing ethical guidelines and policy for therapeutic applications to assure Canadians will receive the best health care possible.

Dr. Sheila Singh, with Branavan Manoranjan's paper, receives 2014 Young Investigator Award

The journal STEM CELLS announced their 2014 Young Investigator Award that honours young scientists who are principal investigators on a research paper published in STEM CELLS. Dr. Sheila Singh, with Branavan Manoranjan's paper FoxG1 Interacts with Bmi1 to Regulate Self-Renewal and Tumorigenicity of Medulloblastoma Stem Cells, was listed as one of the 5 best papers!

[Read more about this publication and others recognized by the award on the STEM CELLS Portal: The Best Papers from our 2014 Young Investigators]

Mick Bhatia's research on pluripotent stem cells makes Canadian Cancer Society's Top 10 research stories of 2014

Mick Bhatia

Dr. Mick Bhatia's discovery that the type of cells used to make human induced pluripotent stem cells determines what can be best done with them is being honoured as one of the Canadian Cancer Society's Top 10 research stories of 2014.

The study, published in Nature Communications, showed that human iPSCs have a memory at the genetic level of the cell type used to make them, which increases their ability to differentiate to that tissue type after being reverted to a stem cell state. For example, Dr. Bhatia was able to show that stem cells made from blood cells are able to make blood ten times better than stem cells created from other parent tissue types. This discovery will be applied to improving stem cell therapy treatments for patients, enhancing disease modeling, and building on successes in the area of personalized drug discovery.

More about Mick Bhatia's discovery Read more about Mick Bhatia's Discovery


StemCellsShorts are a series of short videos that aim to demystify the field of stem cell research. Watch below for Dr. Mick Bhatia's explanation of induced pluripotent stem cells and the role they can play in developing new therapies for human disease:

What are induced pluripotent stem cells? Narrated by Dr. Mick Bhatia from Stem Cell Network on Vimeo.

[Learn more about StemCellShorts]

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