Community forum on stem cell research and organ regeneration

April 30 presentation highlighted organ repair and regeneration potentially using stem cells

About UC Davis stem cell research

UC Davis Institute of Regenerative Cures © UC RegentsUC Davis is playing a leading role in stem cell research, with more than 140 faculty scientists and physicians working on a variety of stem cell investigations at campus locations in Davis and Sacramento.

The university's new Institute for Regenerative Cures, a facility supported by the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine, recently opened in Sacramento. This large research facility provides state-of-the-art laboratories, cell manufacturing and testing rooms, enabling researchers to launch clinical trials involving stem cell therapies.

The institute, along with a shared research facility in Davis, complements the university's NIH-supported Clinical and Translational Science Center and is designed to help turn stem cells into cures. For more information, visit the institute's website.

Posted May 5, 2010

UC Davis Health System experts gave presentations on the latest research on the use of stem cells for potentially repairing and regenerating organs such as the liver, bladder and kidney and offering new avenues of hope for those on waiting lists for organ donors.

In her introduction, Claire Pomeroy, vice chancellor for human health sciences and dean of the School of Medicine at UC Davis, said, "Imagine being able to rebuild a damaged organ with stem cells, avoiding the need for surgery to transplant donor organs. Or imagine being able to create an organ in a laboratory, built from a patient’s own stem cells, so there is no risk of rejection after transplantation. Tonight, you’re going to get a glimpse of some amazing engineering — what is called 'bio-engineering.'"

Nearly 100 people attended the event — called "Beyond Transplants" — which was one of the health system’s Stem Cell Dialogues, a discussion series that offers opportunities for the public to learn about stem cell therapies that UC Davis is developing to address a wide array of diseases and injuries. In addition to rebuilding organs, the dialogue addressed opportunities for using stem cells to create replacement bladder tissues.

Expert panel take audience questions © UC Regents
UC Davis Health System experts shared information on the latest stem cell advances at "Beyond Transplants," the most recent of the health system's Stem Cell Dialogues. Pictured from left to right are Jan Nolta, Brian Gallay, Eric Kurzrock and Claire Pomeroy.

“The current clinical practices of using bowel sections to engineer the bladder do have room for improvement,” said Jan Nolta, director of the UC Davis Stem Cell Program and the university’s new Institute for Regenerative Cures, a facility supported by the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine. “Our dream is to grow new bladder tissues in the laboratory for children and others who need them. It is exciting that CIRM-funded stem cell projects now include research that could help address spina bifida and other bladder disorders.”

Nolta was one of the featured experts at the dialogue. She was joined by pediatric urologist Eric Kurzrock, who is studying regenerative medicine and bladder repair, and nephrologist Brian Gallay, who specializes in kidney transplantation. The event was moderated by Vice Chancellor Pomeroy, who is also a member of the governing board of the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine.

To add your name to the invitation list for the next UC Davis Stem Cell Dialogue, please e-mail Laurie MacIntosh.