Month: February 2013

Hiroshima University will form an “artificial nuclease research base” for genome editing

The program is clustered around Professor Takashi YAMAMOTO who has developed artificial nucleases (TALEN and ZFN), chimera proteins whose domains are specifically combined with restriction enzyme FokI. If it combines with the target sequence, DNA will be cut. Since selection of a target sequence is possible, this method is considered as next-generation KO technology, which […]

Anaeropharma Science Co. starts clinical tests in the US on cancer treatment using recombinant Bifidus bacteria

The test strain, Bifidobacterium longum (APS001F) which expresses adenosine deaminase (AD), will be administered intravenously followed by 5-fluorocytosine, leading to selective formation of highly toxic 5-fluorouracil in anaerobic environments where tumor tissue is located. The patient is also given maltose, a growth factor for Bifidobacteria. Experiments on mice and rats in Japan led to a […]

Team at University of Tokyo and Meiji University succeeds on pancreas transplantation in swine model

Profs. Hiroshi NAGASHIMA and others report that transfer of swine blastomeres to transgenic swine embryos defunct in pancreas formation led to healthy swines carrying a normal pancreas. This study is part of the ERATO “Nakauchi stem cell control project” financed by the JST. Hitomi MATSUNARI et al., PNAS doi:10.1073/pnas.1222902110

Daiichi Sankyo announces foundation of “Orphan Disease Treatment Institute, Inc.”, nucleic acid-based drug for treatment of Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD) is first target

The company will be jointly financed by Daiichi Sankyo and Mitsubishi UFJ Capital. Technology is based on an antisense oligonucleotide (an ethylene-bridged nucleic acid) which acts by exxon skipping. The target period for clinical proof of concept is 4 years. Daiichi Sankyo press release, February 14, 2013

New Bifidus bacterium species isolated from excrements of free-living lowland gorillas

Prof Juichi YAMAGIWA, Kyoto Prefectural university, has screened and characterized a new species of Bifidobacterium from the excrements of a herd of about 20 Western lowland gorillas in Gabon. Genetic analysis revealed that this species might be phylogenetically older compared to Bifidobacteria species in the human gut. Nikkei Journal, February 8, 2013

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