Canadian Cancer Society Media Release
Toronto Star "Hope in 10 cancer breakthroughs"
Dr. Bhatia is highlighted in a recent Science-Business eXchange Cover Story, Tracing Cancer Stem Cells.
SCC-RI scientist Dr. Sheila Singh has joined a national "dream team" that's assembling to find new treatments for a deadly form of brain cancer.
A team of SCC-RI scientists has discovered that the drug thioridazine successfully kills cancer stem cells in humans while avoiding the toxic side-effects of conventional cancer treatments.
Human stem cells have the ability to become any cell
type in the human body, but when it comes to their destination they know
where they want to go.
In a paper published in the scientific journal Cell Stem Cell, Mick Bhatia, director of the McMaster Stem Cell and Cancer Research Institute, led a team of investigators to discover the molecular underpinnings of how human pluripotent stem cells make decisions. Pluripotency is the ability of stem cells to turn into any one of the 226 cell types that make up the human body.
Dr. Mick Bhatia's lab continues its groundbreaking research turning adult skin into human stem cells to generate different types of blood cells. This study aims to identify the molecules required for reprogramming these cells, focusing on the Gli3 gene. The goal is to create an unlimited source of blood for cancer patients requiring bone marrow transplants to fight the side effects of radiation and chemotherapy.
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.