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By Gus G. Sentementes, The Baltimore Sun | October 5, 2012
Aging baby boomers are increasingly turning to testosterone prescriptions in a bid to stay healthy and boost their vitality. But the therapy has some health risks for men. Recently, scientists at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health have been exploring how stem cells can be used to regenerate testosterone in aging men, without their having to resort to testosterone injections. "We're trying to understand whether you can prevent [diminishing testosterone], whether you can reverse that," said Dr. Barry Zirkin, a Hopkins researchers who has co-developed a new way to activate stem cells in the testes that, in turn, form the cells that produce testosterone.
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BUSINESS
By Natalie Sherman, The Baltimore Sun | April 30, 2014
A California agency that oversees $3 billion in stem cell research funding Wednesday named former Osiris Therapeutics head C. Randal Mills to replace its outgoing CEO. Mills, a Bethesda native and Baltimore resident, stepped down in December after almost 10 years at Osiris, citing personal reasons. The California Institute for Regenerative Medicine's governing board selected Mills from seven finalists after interviews in April, spokesman Kevin McCormack said. He will make $550,000 in his new position and a start date has not been determined, McCormack said.
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NEWS
March 11, 2004
PRESIDENT BUSH'S carefully crafted compromise on stem cell research appears to be defeating his purpose. By permitting federal funds to be used only for research on existing stem cell lines, the president had hoped to discourage, if not curtail altogether, the creation of human embryos for the sole purpose of experimenting on them. His goal, announced in August 2001, was to allow the development of potentially lifesaving cures while drawing a moral and ethical line to protect the sanctity of human life.
BUSINESS
The Baltimore Sun | December 3, 2013
Shares in Osiris Therapeutics Inc. fell 7.6 percent Tuesday after the company announced that C. Randal Mills will step down as its president and CEO for personal reasons. Mills will remain as a strategic advisor to the Columbia-based firm that develops stem cell-based products to treat conditions in orthopedic, sports medicine and wound care markets. Lode Debrabandere, the firm's chief operating officer, will become president and CEO, pending approval of the Osiris board. Debrabandere joined Osiris in 2006 to lead its marquee unit developing the drug Prochymal to treat Crohn's disease.
NEWS
May 3, 2005
KUDOS TO the National Academy of Sciences for ably filling the breach caused by the absence of federal guidelines on human embryonic stem cell research. While we prefer that rules governing research on human tissues be federal and enforceable, the National Academy of Sciences' new voluntary guidelines are a necessary stand-in. The administration's ban on federal funding for new-line embryonic stem cell research has not slowed its growth. States -- most notably California, through a $3 billion 10-year initiative -- have taken on the role of funder for this breakthrough, not-ready-for-profit science.
HEALTH
By Gus G. Sentementes, The Baltimore Sun | June 29, 2012
Halfway around the world in India, Sivaprakash Ramalingam had heard of Johns Hopkins researchers using a promising new technique for gene therapy that he hoped to integrate with stem cells to cure diseases. After getting a doctorate in biochemistry in his native country, he came to Baltimore four years ago to study under the technique's pioneer, Srinivasan Chandrasegaran, at Hopkins' Bloomberg School of Public Health. Ramalingam's research has led him down the path of seeking a cure for sickle cell anemia, a painful, life-shortening blood disorder that afflicts many in his home region in southern India.
NEWS
By KNIGHT RIDDER/TRIBUNE | November 18, 2005
Heart attack patients who were treated with their own stem cells a few days after being hospitalized had significantly improved heart pumping ability, according to the largest, most rigorous clinical trial to date of the controversial therapy. The improvement seen with stem cells was better than with the best drugs available and it appears the therapy repaired damage done during heart attacks, said lead author Volker Schachinger, a cardiologist at J.W. Goethe University in Frankfurt, Germany.
NEWS
By KATHLEEN PARKER | March 11, 2009
WASHINGTON - As he lifted the ban on federal funding for embryonic stem cell research Monday, President Barack Obama proclaimed that scientific decisions now will be made "on facts, not ideology." This sounds good, but what if there were other nonideological facts that Mr. Obama seems to be ignoring? One fact is that since Mr. Obama began running for president, researchers have made some rather amazing strides in alternative stem cell research. Mr. Obama has missed an opportunity to prove that he is pro-science but also sensitive to the concerns of taxpayers who don't want to pay for research that requires embryo destruction.
NEWS
By Noam N. Levey and Karen Kaplan and Noam N. Levey and Karen Kaplan,Los Angeles Times | March 7, 2009
President Barack Obama plans to lift key restrictions Monday on federal funding of embryonic stem cell research, reversing one of the most-debated domestic policies of his predecessor, according to administration sources. The move has been widely anticipated by scientists and patient-advocacy groups who chafed at President George W. Bush's 2001 decision to bar federal funding for research on nearly all human embryonic stem cells. Under the Bush policy, a limited set of embryonic stem cells created before August 2001 could be used in federally funded experiments.
NEWS
By Ellen Goodman | August 9, 2004
BOSTON - Who would have dreamed that stem cells would rise above their microscopic stature to become stars on the political stage? Until now, science has rarely made an appearance on a party platform. Indeed, no campaign manager has ever before said, "It's the stem cells, stupid." But this year, there is a new biotech front in the culture wars. It isn't just that stem cells got huge applause the 20 times they were mentioned on the Democratic convention podium. There was the way Ron Reagan ended his masterful speech with the call: "Whatever else you do come Nov. 2, I urge you, please cast a vote for embryonic stem-cell research."
HEALTH
By Scott Dance, The Baltimore Sun | January 11, 2013
Even as they celebrate clearing a legal hurdle, worries of stem cell research grant money evaporating constantly weigh on scientists like Dr. Ted Dawson, whose projects at Johns Hopkins Hospital have helped inform treatment of neurological diseases like Parkinson's and Alzheimer's. A three-year court battle by two researchers to stop stem cell research using human embryos ended Monday when the Supreme Court declined to review the case. Scientists like Dawson say that frees up grant opportunities and are relieved — for now. "It takes some of the uncertainty out," Dawson said.
NEWS
By Gus G. Sentementes, The Baltimore Sun | October 5, 2012
Aging baby boomers are increasingly turning to testosterone prescriptions in a bid to stay healthy and boost their vitality. But the therapy has some health risks for men. Recently, scientists at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health have been exploring how stem cells can be used to regenerate testosterone in aging men, without their having to resort to testosterone injections. "We're trying to understand whether you can prevent [diminishing testosterone], whether you can reverse that," said Dr. Barry Zirkin, a Hopkins researchers who has co-developed a new way to activate stem cells in the testes that, in turn, form the cells that produce testosterone.
HEALTH
By Meredith Cohn | September 19, 2012
Stem cells from newborns appear to have a much greater ability to restore heart function than adult stem cells, according to a new study from University of Maryland School of Medicine researchers who were looking for ways to mend children's broken hearts. It was the first study to compare the regenerative abilities of the stem cells. And the lab and animal studies showed a three-fold ability of newborn cells to restore heart function. The study is published in the September 11 issue of Circulation . “The surprising finding is that the cells from neonates are extremely regenerative and perform better than adult stem cells,” said the study's senor author Dr. Sunjay Kaushal, associate professor of surgery at Maryland and director of pediatric cardiac surgery at the University of Maryland Medical Center.
HEALTH
By Gus G. Sentementes, The Baltimore Sun | June 29, 2012
Halfway around the world in India, Sivaprakash Ramalingam had heard of Johns Hopkins researchers using a promising new technique for gene therapy that he hoped to integrate with stem cells to cure diseases. After getting a doctorate in biochemistry in his native country, he came to Baltimore four years ago to study under the technique's pioneer, Srinivasan Chandrasegaran, at Hopkins' Bloomberg School of Public Health. Ramalingam's research has led him down the path of seeking a cure for sickle cell anemia, a painful, life-shortening blood disorder that afflicts many in his home region in southern India.
BUSINESS
Gus G. Sentementes | May 18, 2012
A Columbia-based biotechnology company said this week it received the world's first government approval to market a stem cell drug , in Canada. Osiris Therapeutics, founded in 1992, spent 17 years developing a stem cell therapy that offers anti-inflammatory and tissue-regeneration properties. The first treatment it has received approval for this week will help treat children who've received bone marrow transplants that their bodies have rejected. The condition, known as acute graft-versus-host disease, or GvHD,  is fatal to 80 percent of the children who contract it, the company said.  C. Randal Mills, president and CEO of Osiris, said in a conference call Friday morning that the company has spent the past eight years navigating clinical trials and regulatory paperwork in a mission to be the first approved stem cell treatment in the world.  “During the past eight years, we have not wavered from that mission,” Mills said.
HEALTH
By Andrea K. Walker, The Baltimore Sun | March 6, 2012
A Maryland man who became the second person in the world to have a synthetic windpipe transplant died Monday, nearly four months after having the rare operation done in Sweden. His mother, Dorne Lyles, said Tuesday that her son died at Franklin Square Hospital. He was 30. The cause of death is unclear. Christopher Lyles, a Department of Defense engineer from Abingdon, turned to the surgery after doctors determined a tumor on his trachea was inoperable and he had late-stage cancer.
NEWS
By Sheila Derman | March 3, 2005
MARYLAND IS at the center of an important national debate over embryonic stem cell research because of legislation introduced in the General Assembly that would authorize this pioneering science and provide $25 million in state funds annually to support it. The timing for this legislation - introduced by Sen. Paula C. Hollinger of Baltimore County and Del. Samuel I. Rosenberg of Baltimore, both Democrats - could not be better. It would be financed with money from the Cigarette Restitution Fund.
NEWS
By MICHAEL TANNER | July 20, 2006
President Bush yesterday vetoed a bill that would have provided federal funding for research on new lines of stem cells. The debate leading up to Mr. Bush's first veto was divisive, emotional, replete with misinformation from both sides - and totally unnecessary. Despite the impression left by some of its supporters, stem cell research is not banned. In fact, not only is it legal, it is thriving in the private sector. There are at least 11 private stem cell research centers at universities and medical centers across the country.
BUSINESS
By Gus G. Sentementes, The Baltimore Sun | April 28, 2011
The University of Maryland, Baltimore on Thursday announced a public-private partnership with two companies to offer stem cells for research and clinical testing. The university's Center for Stem Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine will work with Paragon Bioservices Inc., based in the university's BioPark, to offer stem cell services, such as the production and storage of various types of stem cells. The second company, California-based Life Technologies Inc., will provide training for research scientists who perform work for the partnership.
HEALTH
By Gus G. Sentementes, The Baltimore Sun | February 14, 2011
In the field of stem cell research in Maryland, scientists submit more than four times as many requests for research money as there are state grants to support them. Dr. Yoon-Young Jang knows the situation firsthand. Four years ago she submitted a grant application, only to have a state funding commission pass her by. The next year she submitted another application — and got the funding. Today, Jang and her team of scientists are able to convert a human liver cell into a certain type of stem cell, which can then be used to generate more liver cells — a first-in-the-world discovery for the Johns Hopkins researcher.
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