Study: Natural killer cells can be used against acute lymphoblastic leukemia | Incidence of immunodeficiency disorder is higher than previously estimated | Antibacterial gel could eliminate resistant superbugs
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August 20, 2014
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Study: Natural killer cells can be used against acute lymphoblastic leukemia
Autologous natural killer cells from children with acute lymphoblastic leukemia can be replicated and used to eliminate cancer cells, according to researchers at the Saban Research Institute at Children's Hospital Los Angeles. The study showed that by adding monoclonal antibodies, natural killer cells can specifically select and kill cancer cells. "These results are very promising -- with potential as a part of first-line therapy and also as a treatment for eliminating any remaining cancer cells following standard chemotherapy," said study co-author Hisham Abdel-Azim. Business Standard (India)/Indo-Asian News Service (8/19)
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New Monoclonal Blood Grouping Reagents Now Available
Through our commitment and dedication to the Blood Bank industry, Immucor is pleased to announce the availability of new Monoclonal Blood Grouping Reagents: Anti-Fya, Anti-Jka, Anti-Jkb, Anti-S and Anti-s. Learn more.
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Science & Health
Incidence of immunodeficiency disorder is higher than previously estimated
A new study suggests that previous research has underestimated the incidence of severe combined immunodeficiency. One in every 100,000 newborns had been thought to have the condition. But based on the results of T cell testing for more than 3 million infants, the rate appears to be one out of every 58,000 babies. Early detection and treatments such as transplants, enzyme replacement or gene therapy were associated with better survival in SCID infants, according to the study in the Journal of the American Medical Association. DailyRx.com (8/19)
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Antibacterial gel could eliminate resistant superbugs
A new antibacterial gel composed of peptides has shown promise in killing drug-resistant bacteria including Pseudomonas aeruginosa, staphylococci and Escherichia coli. The gel penetrates the biofilm that can protect bacteria on the surfaces of medical implants such as catheters and hip replacements, according to a study in the journal Biomacromolecules. Science World Report (8/19)
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The Technical Manual 18th edition—NOW AVAILABLE
Revised and more relevant than ever, the 18th edition of the Technical Manual includes updated and expanded PBM content, enhanced cellular therapy chapters and inclusion of information on immunohematology reflecting both serologic and molecular aspects. For the first time, methods in SOP format are placed on a USB flash card making them customizable for easy adoption by your facility. Order your copy today!
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Emerging Trends
Device helps uncover how malaria parasites invade red blood cells
Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute scientists used laser optical tweezers to better understand malaria's invasion of red blood cells. The tool was used to pick up parasites and insert them into red blood cells, and the findings indicate that drug combinations could be developed to prevent infection, according to the study in the Biophysical Journal. MedicalDaily.com (8/19)
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Harvard group designs portable multipurpose sensor
Harvard University researchers have created a low-cost portable electrochemical sensor that can perform several tests. Among other functions, the device can detect malarial antigens and measure blood glucose levels. A test strip is used to assess samples, and the tool can report results online using an attached cellphone. The team reported its findings in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. MedGadget.com (8/19)
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3D Printed Cellular Therapy Products: Regulatory Considerations
3D printing of cells is here! In this August 28 webinar presented by the AABB Center for Cellular Therapies, learn how human cells and tissues are currently and will potentially be combined with 3D printing technology. Experts will also discuss the US regulations and requirements surrounding 3D cellular printing, and how it fits into current and future regulatory frameworks.
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Industry News & Practice
Heart-disease genetics study receives $2.7 million grant from NIH
The National Institutes of Health's National Institute of General Medical Sciences awarded a Texas Biomedical Research Institute research team a $2.7 million grant to identify gene-regulating proteins vital to the regulation of cholesterol and other risk factors for cardiovascular disease using mass spectrometry. The team will also use the four-year grant to develop new ways of distinguishing sequence differences in the human genome that play a role in heart disease. GenomeWeb Daily News (free registration) (8/15)
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Novartis buys stake in Gamida Cell
Novartis agreed to pay $35 million to acquire a 15% stake in stem cell therapy developer Gamida Cell. The deal also gives Novartis an option to fully purchase the Israeli firm for $165 million in cash and up to $435 million in milestone fees depending on the success of Gamida's experimental drug NiCord. NiCord is being tested in Phase I/II trials in patients with hematologic malignancies including leukemia, sickle cell disease and lymphoma. Reuters (8/19)
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Government & Regulatory
U.K. regulators recommend expanded use of Celgene's Revlimid
The U.K.'s National Institute for Health and Care Excellence has recommended the use of Celgene's lenalidomide, or Revlimid, for patients with myelodysplastic syndromes. The recommendation was based on revised information provided by Celgene, proposing a reduction in the drug's cost. This revokes the agency's 2013 draft guidance that did not recommend the use of Revlimid due to pricing concerns. PMLive.com (U.K.) (8/20)
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Sanofi gains FDA approval for Cerdelga for enzyme disorder
The FDA has granted Sanofi approval for its type 1 Gaucher disease pill Cerdelga. The genetic disease results from an enzyme deficiency and leads to an enlarged spleen and liver. Reuters (8/19)
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Association News
CT Management Subsection distributes survey on practices for day-to-day management of cellular processing laboratories
The AABB Center for Cellular Therapies CT Management Subsection is conducting a survey to gauge the range of practices used in the day-to-day operational management of cellular processing laboratories in the United States. Results of the survey will be used to better understand where participants fall along the spectrum of practice as compared to their peer group based on the number of cellular therapy products manufactured. Information from the study may be useful in justifying approvals for additional personnel in the laboratories. Interested individuals can participate in the survey online.
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Who's Hiring?
Position TitleCompany NameLocation
Director, Quality Assurance & Regulatory AffairsHeartland Blood CentersAurora, IL
Clinical Lab SpecialistBlood Systems, Inc.Tempe, AZ
Advanced Clinical Lab Specialist - IRLBlood Systems, Inc.Tempe, AZ
Clinical Laboratory ScientistBlood Centers of the Pacific, CA
Director of CollectionsBlood Bank of Hawaii, HI
Click here to view more job listings.
 
SmartQuote
Most people say that it is the intellect which makes a great scientist. They are wrong: It is character."
-- Albert Einstein,
German-American theoretical physicist
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