Withholding amino acid blocks production of blood stem cells, study finds | Study explores interactions of cells and Zika virus | Portable device counts white blood cells
October 21, 2016
AABB SmartBrief
News for the transfusion medicine and cellular therapy community
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Withholding amino acid blocks production of blood stem cells, study finds
Tests of animals and human cells found that production of blood stem cells is halted in the absence of the amino acid valine, researchers reported in the journal Science. The finding could lead to bone marrow transplant methods that do not rely on chemotherapy or radiation, according to the study team.
ScientificAmerican.com (10/20) 
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Immucor is dedicated to donor and recipient compatibility testing. Come explore our booth #823 in Orlando to discover what’s new in the Immucor portfolio, attend our expert booth talks and enter a drawing to win a prize! Also new this year: stop by our booth to add the NEW HLA Character Pin to your collection!
Science & Health
Study explores interactions of cells and Zika virus
A study in the journal Cell Host & Microbe found that Zika-infected human cells will alter the virus's RNA, increasing N6-methyladenosine methylation, which reduces Zika virus production. Researchers from the University of California at San Diego also found that the virus introduces changes in the cells' RNA.
USA Today/Kaiser Health News (10/20),  KNSD-TV (San Diego) (10/20) 
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Grifols Welcomes AABB delegates to Orlando
Dedicated to advancing transfusion safety, Grifols comprehensive portfolio is designed to help blood banks and hospital transfusion centers support safety from donation through transfusion. Visit Booth #737 and attend our symposium on emergency preparedness and prevention on October 24.
Emerging Trends
Portable device counts white blood cells
As a California Institute of Technology graduate student, Wendian Shi was looking for a quick way to measure white blood cell counts, a critical gauge for a number of health issues. Now CEO of CytoChip, he and others have been fleshing out that thesis idea into a portable system that somewhat resembles a glucose monitor with its blood-sampling test strip but that also incorporates a microfluidic and a dye to make the cells visible.
ASME.org (10/2016) 
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Industry News & Practice
Rigel reports lack of significance in 2nd trial of fostamatinib
Rigel Pharmaceuticals' second Phase III trial of its drug candidate fostamatinib found no statistical significance in the response of platelet counts to treatment in patients with chronic immune thrombocytopenia. The company reported that combining data from the study with that of another trial resulted in a finding of significance.
Reuters (10/20) 
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Vascular Designs launches crowdfunding effort for cancer treatment device
An Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign has been launched by Vascular Designs in hopes of raising $500,000. The proceeds will be used to begin a new production run of the company's IsoFlow, an infusion catheter designed to deliver chemotherapy drugs through the blood vessels for cancer treatment, and redesign the device to make it smaller for accessing difficult-to-reach areas of the body.
MedCityNews.com (10/20) 
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Public offering pulls in $10M-plus for Biocept
A public offering of stock and warrants has brought in a little more than $10 million, before underwriting discount and estimated offering expenses, for Biocept. The company, which makes liquid biopsy assays, did not say how the proceeds would be used.
GenomeWeb Daily News (free registration) (10/20) 
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Government & Regulatory
FDA grants orphan status to Keystone Nano's liver cancer treatment
The FDA has granted an orphan-drug designation to Keystone Nano's Ceramide NanoLiposome as a treatment for liver cancer. Data from in vitro and in vivo studies showed that the product can provide treatment without undue toxicity.
PharmaBiz.com (India) (10/20) 
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Association News
Stay connected during Annual Meeting
Attendees can follow the 2016 AABB Annual Meeting Blog for news and session review and download the AABB Annual Meeting 2016 mobile app, which enables users to sign up for alerts and search for abstract presentations, speakers, exhibitors and even other attendees. The Annual Meeting webpage provides additional information and links to the blog and to instructions for how to download the app. In addition, those plugged into social media can follow AABB on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and Twitter.
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