Scientists identify genetic switch critical for early stem cell development | White fat cells can be reprogrammed, study finds | Synthetic compound shows promise against drug-resistant bacteria
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December 15, 2014
AABB SmartBrief
News for the transfusion medicine and cellular therapy community

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Scientists identify genetic switch critical for early stem cell development
Scientists at the University of Toronto have identified the region in the genome that controls Sox2, a gene critical for the maintenance of pluripotency in embryonic stem cells. The findings were reported in the journal Genes & Development. Business Standard (India)/Indo-Asian News Service (12/15), Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News (12/15)
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White fat cells can be reprogrammed, study finds
The protein KLF11 can be manipulated to reprogram white fat cells into brown fat cells, a process that may help prevent and treat obesity, according to scientists from the University of Southern Denmark. Researchers used a type 2 diabetes drug to aid the conversion into cells that provide energy to the body more readily. (12/13)
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Synthetic compound shows promise against drug-resistant bacteria
A synthetic peptide modeled after the tail end of the HIV protein is able to destroy antibiotic-resistant bacteria by puncturing the bacteria's cellular membrane, according to researchers at the University of Pittsburgh. In preclinical tests, the compound was found to be more effective than traditional antibiotics. The findings were reported in the journal Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy. Voice of America (12/11)
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Liver fibrosis can develop quickly after hepatitis C seroconversion
According to research reported in JAMA Internal Medicine, 18.4% of patients develop liver cirrhosis within 10 years of hepatitis C infection, most within the first five years after infection. Researchers looked at data on 1,840 patients matched with controls who remained HCV antibody-negative. Medscape (free registration)/Reuters (12/14)
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FREE Blood Bank Survival Guide: 4 Steps When Moving to a New HIS
If your hospital is moving to a new HIS, odds are your blood bank wasn't part of the conversation. To help you survive the transition, Stephanie Hawkins, MT(ASCP), Regional Blood Bank Manager for Providence Health & Services, shared her implementation experience during a recent webinar. You can download the slides from Ms. Hawkins' presentation as she takes you through her four secrets to a successful HIS implementation for your Blood Bank. Download the 'Blood Bank Survival Guide' now…
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Industry News & Practice
Pieris initiates clinical trial of experimental anemia drug
Pieris has launched a Phase I clinical trial of PRS-080, an experimental protein being developed as a treatment for anemia. Three dozen healthy volunteers will receive the drug and be monitored at a facility in Germany, and the findings are expected to be reported within a year. Pharmaceutical Business Review Online (12/12)
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Staphylococcus assay is evaluated in study
Great Basin Scientific has begun a trial for its Staph identification/resistance molecular assay. The assay provides speciation of clinically critical Staphylococcus species, enabling the identification of environmental contaminants from infectious pathogens, the company said. The test, which generates results in less than two hours, requires hands-on time of less than two minutes. GenomeWeb Daily News (free registration) (12/12)
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Computer, Software and Spreadsheet Validation in the Cellular Therapy Lab
This December 16 webinar offered by the AABB Center for Cellular therapies identifies and explains the FDA's regulatory requirements for software used in cellular therapy labs. It will review applying regulatory requirements to Excel spreadsheets used to comply with CGTP requirements, concepts of software performance validation and their application to spreadsheets, and challenges in identifying spreadsheet use for quality audits. Register Now!
The Buzz
Ensure a Favorable Inspection with Title21 Health Solutions Title21 Health Solutions helps you reduce the risks of poor inspections from CAP, CLIA, FDA, AABB, FACT and more. Download Title21's latest White Paper to learn how Title21 Regulation and Standards Maintenance Solution supports your laboratory to comply with one of the industry's leading accrediting bodies. Click here to download the free White Paper now.
Government & Regulatory
Alere's rapid HIV test receives FDA waiver
Alere obtained a waiver from the FDA for the expanded use of its Determine HIV-1/2 Ag/Ab Combo test. The test, which was previously used only in licensed hospitals and laboratories, can now be utilized in locations such as physician's offices and clinics. FDAnews (12/12)
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Early discount offer extended for TransFuse 2015 — Register today!
Register today for TransFuse 2015: Transformative Fusion of Innovative Patient Blood Management Technologies to hear from speakers on important topics in blood management as well as examine pathways for practice improvement. The speaker line-up includes experts from Duke University, Mayo Clinic, The University of Texas Medical School at Houston and more.
Association News
AABB extends deadline to purchase PBM modules at introductory rate
AABB encourages all members to take advantage of the introductory price for its new PBM learning modules, which will be in effect through Dec. 19. Four modules currently are available on the following topics: Introduction to PBM; Optimizing Transfusion Benefits; Intraoperative Blood Conservation, Transfusion Strategies and Surgical Techniques; and PBM for Coagulopathy. The PBM Learning Modules Web page contains additional information, including course descriptions and links to ordering forms.
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Who's Hiring?
Position TitleCompany NameLocation
Blood Bank ProfessionalsHealthCare Connections, Inc.
Clinical Laboratory ScientistEisenhower Medical CenterRancho Mirage, CA
Click here to view more job listings.
Some of us think holding on makes us strong; but sometimes it is letting go."
-- Hermann Hesse,
German-Swiss writer and poet
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