October 2021
New stem cell identified by Sanford Burnham Prebys researchers offers hope to people with rare liver disease

A new source of stem cells just outside the liver could help treat people living with Alagille syndrome, a rare, incurable genetic disorder in which the bile ducts of the liver are absent, leading to severe liver damage and death. "The stem cells that we found are actually outside the liver, not within in it, which made their discovery difficult," said senior author Duc Dong, Ph.D. "It only requires a few of these cells to enter the liver and multiply to repopulate all the cells lost to the disease."

The study, published in Hepatology, was performed in a zebrafish model of Alagille syndrome.

How microbes shape human health: an interview with Andrei Osterman

In his work on the human microbiome, Andrei Osterman, Ph.D., has shown how the organisms living within us can be leveraged to boost human health for a humanitarian cause—the plight of malnourished children. 

Sanford Burnham Prebys is helping map the brain

Researchers in the lab of Jerold Chun, M.D., Ph.D., have helped the NIH create a cellular atlas of the motor cortex—the area of the brain responsible for movement. Their work, published recently in the journal Nature, is the flagship paper for the NIH’s BRAIN initiative, a massive multi-institution project to unravel the mysteries of the human brain.

Sanford Burnham Prebys receives $5 million award to train the next generation of regenerative medicine scientists

Researchers from Sanford Burnham Prebys, including Pier Lorenzo Puri, M.D., Alessandra Sacco, Ph.D., and Evan Snyder, M.D., Ph.D., have received $5 million in new funding to launch a multidisciplinary stem cell training program. “We are exceptionally grateful that the California Institute of Regenerative Medicine (CIRM) is supporting this important program,” said Sacco. “Stem cells hold tremendous promise for medical treatments, and CIRM's support will allow our scientists to learn more about the process through which stem cell science becomes medicine."

Pancreatic cancer: Designing new treatments for a deadly cancer

Pancreatic cancer remains one of the deadliest cancers for which there is no current effective treatment. Only one in 10 people survive longer than five years, according to the American Cancer Society, and its incidence is on the rise. Join us on Wednesday, November 17, from 1:00 to 2:00 p.m. PT, to learn about promising research breakthroughs toward effective treatments for pancreatic cancer.

Unraveling the genetics of congenital heart defects to help save lives

While congenital heart defects remain the most common cause of death in infants, the genetic basis of these defects is unknown in the vast majority of cases. Join us on Tuesday, January 25, from 1:00 to 2:00 p.m. PT, to learn how Sanford Burnham Prebys is teaming up with Rady Children's Hospital to demystify the genetics of this disorder by studying the genes of actual patients.

Personalizing medicine for pediatric brain cancer

Medulloblastoma is the most common malignant brain tumor in children. Although aggressive treatments can cure some patients, one in four patients dies from the disease, and those who survive often suffer devastating long-term side effects. Safer and more effective therapies are desperately needed. Join Sanford Burnham Prebys’ Robert Wechsler-Reya, Ph.D., and Rady Children's Hospital-San Diego’s John Crawford, M.D., to learn about the latest efforts in developing better treatments for pediatric brain cancer.

At Sanford Burnham Prebys, we're passionate about finding bold new ways to treat disease, and we recognize the importance of sharing our discoveries with the public—especially during this unprecedented time. Find out where and when you can "meet" our scientists virtually and learn about their research in this community event calendar.
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