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The topic of stem cells has a high profile in the media. We've made important advances in our scientific understanding, but despite this the clinical applications of stem cells are still in their infancy and most real stem cell therapy carried out today is some form of bone marrow transplantation. At the same time, a scandalous spread of unproven stem cell treatments by private clinics represents a serious problem, with treatments being offered which are backed by limited scientific rationale, and which are at best ineffective, and at worse harmful. This Very Short Introduction introduces stem cells, exploring what they are, and what scientists do with them. Introducing the different types of stem cells, Jonathan Slack explains how they can be used to treat diseases such as retinal degeneration, diabetes, Parkinson's disease, heart disease, and spinal trauma. He also discusses the important technique of bone marrow transplantation and some other types of current stem cell therapy, used for the treatment of blindness and of severe burns. Slack warns against fake stem cell treatments and discusses how to distinguish real from fake treatments. He also describes the latest scientific progress in the field, and looks forward to what we can expect to happen in the next few years Very Short Introductions: Brilliant, Sharp, Inspiring ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.
This new edition of a foundational text presents a contemporary review of cladistics, as applied to biological classification. It provides a comprehensive account of the past fifty years of discussion on the relationship between classification, phylogeny and evolution. It covers cladistics in the era of molecular data, detailing new advances and ideas that have emerged over the last twenty-five years. Written in an accessible style by internationally renowned authors in the field, readers are straightforwardly guided through fundamental principles and terminology. Simple worked examples and easy-to-understand diagrams also help readers navigate complex problems that have perplexed scientists for centuries. This practical guide is an essential addition for advanced undergraduates, postgraduates and researchers in taxonomy, systematics, comparative biology, evolutionary biology and molecular biology.
Among the offspring of humans and other animals are occasional individuals that are malformed in whole or in part. The most grossly abnormal of these have been referred to from ancient times as monsters, because their birth was thought to foretell doom; the less severely affected are usually known as anomalies. This volume digs deeply into the cellular and molecular processes of embryonic development that go awry in such exceptional situations. It focuses on the physical mechanisms of how genes instruct cells to build anatomy, as well as the underlying forces of evolution that shaped these mechanisms over eons of geologic time. The narrative is framed in a historical perspective that should help students trying to make sense of these complex subjects. Each chapter is written in the style of a Sherlock Holmes story, starting with the clues and ending with a solution to the mystery.
Encyclopedia of Respiratory Medicine, Second Edition explores the key processes of lung diseases and their diagnosis and management. The book dissects the molecular and cellular biology, physiology and immunology that underpin normal lung function, along with the aberrations that occur in respiratory diseases, from common disorders such as asthma and COPD to rarer lung diseases such as cystic fibrosis, interstitial lung diseases and pulmonary hypertension. Written in at a time when the globe is in the grip of respiratory pandemic, lung disease has never been so prominent in the public and political conscious. This new edition will provide new researchers in respiratory medicine with a solid foundation in unfamiliar topics and will update more experienced researchers seeking to step outside their core areas of research to put their work into a broader context.
Available for the first time with Macmillan's new online learning tool, Achieve, Molecular Cell Biology remains the most authoritative and cutting-edge resource available for the cell biology course. The author team, consisting of world-class researchers and teachers, incorporates medically relevant examples where appropriate to help illustrate the connections between cell biology and health and human disease. Emphasis on experimental techniques that drive advances in biomedical sciences and introduce students to cutting edge research teach students the skills they need for their careers. Achieve, Macmillan's new online learning platform, supports educators and students throughout the full range of instruction, including assets suitable for pre-class preparation, in-class active learning, and post-class study and assessment. Featuring new digital resources to engage students and help them to master cell biology concepts, the pairing of a powerful new platform with outstanding biology content provides an unrivaled learning experience.
Biochemistry of Lipids, Lipoproteins and Membranes, Seventh Edition serves as a comprehensive, general reference book for scientists and students studying lipids, lipoproteins and membranes. Here, across 19 chapters, leaders in the field summarize fundamental concepts, recent research developments, data analysis, and implications for human disease and intervention. Topics discussed include lipid biology in both prokaryotes and eukaryotes, fatty acid synthesis, desaturation and elongation, and pathways leading to synthesis of complex phospholipids, sphingolipids and their structural variants. Chapters also examine how bioactive lipids are involved in cell signaling, with an emphasis on disease implications and pathological consequences. As the field advances, each chapter in this new edition has been fully revised to address emerging topics, with all-new coverage of lipid droplets and their role as regulatory organelles for energy homeostasis, as well as their relationship to obesity, liver disease and diabetes. Evolving research in fatty acid handling and storage in eukaryotes is also discussed in-depth, with new sections addressing fatty acid uptake, activation and lipolysis.
Developmental biology is seemingly well understood, with development widely accepted as being a series of programmed changes through which an egg turns into an adult organism, or a seed matures into a plant. However, the picture is much more complex than that: is it all genetically controlled or does environment have an influence? Is the final adult stage the target of development and everything else just a build-up to that point? Are developmental strategies the same in plants as in animals? How do we consider development in single-celled organisms? In this concise, engaging volume, Alessandro Minelli, a leading developmental biologist, addresses these key questions. Using familiar examples and easy-to-follow arguments, he offers fresh alternatives to a number of preconceptions and stereotypes, awakening the reader to the disparity of developmental phenomena across all main branches of the tree of life.
Basic curiosity-driven biomedical science has delivered many of today's most significant medical advances. This book provides clearly explained examples from recent biomedical history and includes convincing arguments for sustaining a robust portfolio of basic research. Intended as an engaging read, which will delight undergraduate and graduate students, as well as scientific researchers, it is full-throated advocacy of basic science. Illustrations and examples include the discoveries of penicillin and insulin, and the breakthrough elucidation of the genetic code. Providing both compelling rationale in support of basic science, and a fascinating look through the history of modern biomedical research, this book highlights with stirring examples why basic biomedical research is so important, and how so many key advances in medicine are derived from basic research. The book also offers a rationale for scientific inquiry and a broader understanding of the history of modern biomedical research missing from today's classrooms. Key Features 1) Provides clear explanations of great scientific discoveries 2) Illustrates connections between basic research findings and modern medicine 3) Includes compelling graphics/diagrams/illustrations 4) Accessible to the general public 5) Offers background for more specialized readers, including researchers as well as those with advanced degrees. Related Titles Staddon, J. Scientific Method: How Science Works, Fails to Work, and Pretends to Work (ISBN 978-1-1382-9536-0) Helliwell, J. R. Skills for Scientific Life (ISBN 978-1-4987-6875-7) MacRitchie, F. Scientific Research as a Career (ISBN 978-1-4398-6965-9)
Together with Volume 1, this book provides an inclusive overview of the molecular and cellular mechanisms of carcinogenesis and offers comprehensive insights into related clinical and therapeutic aspects. This second volume complements the first by presenting and concisely explaining the carcinogenesis of various tumor entities such as non-melanoma skin cancers, bone and soft tissue tumors, pancreatic cancers, hepatocellular cancer and neuroendocrine tumors. As in volume one, each chapter illuminates the similarities and dissimilarities of changed signaling pathways in the different organ systems and depicts potential therapeutic strategies. The focus of volume two lies on the presentation of modern molecular biological techniques for diagnosis, as well as strategies for biomarker identification and validation. Furthermore, it discusses potential therapeutic targets and individualized treatment strategies, offering a valuable resource for all basic scientists and medical researchers interested in translational cancer research.
This book covers basic research topics such as the structure-function relationships of neuropilins and mechanisms of neuropilin-mediated signal transduction, details the most important roles of the neuropilins in developmental biology, and addresses their roles in various conditions such as cancer and various eye diseases. The two neuropilin genes encode scaffold receptors that can bind several different ligands, and also associate with many other receptors and modify their activity. Further, it has been confirmed that they play important roles in the shaping of major organs and tissues such as the nervous system and the vascular system, and that they can modulate immune responses. The book offers a helpful guide for biomedical researchers and all scientists active in the neurosciences, vascular and molecular biology, as well as developmental biology and immunology.
This multidisciplinary book provides up-to-date information on clinical approaches that combine stem or progenitor cells, biomaterials and scaffolds, growth factors, and other bioactive agents in order to offer improved treatment of urologic disorders including lower urinary tract dysfunction, urinary incontinence, neurogenic bladder, and erectile dysfunction. In providing clinicians and researchers with a broad perspective on the development of regenerative medicine technologies, it will assist in the dissemination of both regenerative medicine principles and a variety of exciting therapeutic options. After an opening section addressing current developments and future perspectives in tissue engineering and regenerative medicine, fundamentals such as cell technologies, biomaterials, bioreactors, bioprinting, and decellularization are covered in detail. The remainder of the book is devoted to the description and evaluation of a range of cell and tissue applications, with individual chapters focusing on the kidney, bladder, urethra, urethral sphincter, and penis and testis.
Why do the best-known examples of evolutionary change involve the alteration of one kind of animal into another very similar one, like the evolution of a bigger beak in a bird? Wouldn't it be much more interesting to understand how beaks originated? Most people would agree, but until recently we didn't know much about such origins. That is now changing, with the growth of the interdisciplinary field evo-devo, which deals with the relationship between how embryos develop in the short term and how they (and the adults they grow into) evolve in the long term. One of the key questions is: can the origins of structures such as beaks, eyes, and shells be explained within a Darwinian framework? The answer seems to be yes, but only by expanding that framework. This book discusses the required expansion, and the current state of play regarding our understanding of evolutionary and developmental origins.
This book discusses the two different cellular approaches that are pursued in regenerative medicine: cell therapy and tissue engineering. It examines in detail the therapeutic application of hematopoietic stem cells in marrow regeneration, multi-potent mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs), also referred to as mesenchymal stromal cells. The interest in MSCs can be seen in more than 150 clinical trials, some of which have progressed to Phase III, despite the cells' limited differentiation potential. The book also explores how embryonic stem (ES) cells, being pluripotent in nature, can resolve some of the problems associated with adult stem cells, yet entail other challenges like risks of teratoma formation and immune rejection. A separate chapter deals with the role of noncoding RNAs in neuronal commitment of induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells. Chapters like "Cord blood banking in India and the global scenario"; "3D bioprinting of tissue" and others will make this book an extremely interesting read for all students, researchers and clinicians working in the area of regenerative medicine/stem cells. The book is broadly divided into two parts, the first of which is devoted to basic information on stem cells, and the second of which addresses potential clinical applications in the areas of hematology, cardiology, orthopedic and immune suppression, etc.
This pioneering book offers an introduction to photodynamic therapy, a promising new approach in the treatment of complex diseases like cancer and microbial infections in animals. Addressing all aspects, ranging from basics to clinical practice, it presents the history and fundamentals of photodynamic therapy for non-experts. It includes a collection of basic and clinical studies in cancer and infectious diseases, as well as illustrations of successful treatment procedures and future perspectives and innovative applications involving nanotechnology and advanced drug delivery. This valuable resource offers readers insights into how the therapy works and how to apply it effectively in daily practice.
This book is a compilation of various chapters contributed by a group of leading researchers from different countries and covering up to date information based on published reports and personal experience of authors in the field of cytogenetics. Beginning with the introduction of chromosome, the subsequent chapters on organization of genetic material, karyotype evolution, structural and numerical variations in chromosomes, B-chromosomes and chromosomal aberrations provide an in-depth knowledge and easy understanding of the subject matter. A special feature of the book is the inclusion of a series of chapters on various types of chromosomal aberrations and their impact on breeding behaviour and crop improvement. The possible mechanism, their consequences and role in genetic analysis has been emphasized in these chapters. A few chapters have also been dedicated on various techniques routinely used in the laboratory by students and researchers. Each chapter ends with an extensive bibliography so that the students and researchers may find it relevant to consult more literature on the subject than a book of this size can offer. The book is intended to fulfill the needs of undergraduate and post graduate students of botany, zoology and agriculture besides, teachers and researchers engaged in the field of genetics, cytogenetics, and molecular genetics. In general the readers will find each chapter of the book informative and easy to understand.
In three Volumes this mini book series presents current knowledge and new perspectives on cartilage as a specialized yet versatile tissue. This second volume is dedicated to basic pathologies of the two most common osteoarticular diseases affecting large segments of the Western population, osteoarthritis and chondrodysplasias. This book addresses Professors, researchers and PhD students who are interested in musculoskeletal and cartilage biology and pathobiology.
Many creatures use adhesive polymers and structures to attach to inert substrates, to each other, or to other organisms. This is the first major review that brings together research on many of the well-known biological adhesives dealing with bacteria, fungi, algae, and marine and terrestrial animals. As we learn more about their molecular and mechanical properties we begin to understand why they adhere so well and with this comes broad applications in areas such as medicine, dentistry, and biotechnology.
Emphasis is placed on the elaborate cuticular matrices in insects and crustaceans, spider and insect silks, sialomes of phytophagous and blood-feeding arthropods as well as on secretions of male and female accessory glands. Focus is placed largely on insects, due to the extensive body of published research that in part is the result of available whole genome sequences of several model species (in particular Drosophila melanogaster) and accessible ESTs for other species. Such advances have facilitated fundamental insights into genomic, proteomic and molecular biology-based physiology. This new volume contains comprehensive contributions on extracellular composite matrices in arthropods. The building blocks of such matrices are formed in and secreted by single layered epithelial cells into exterior domains where their final assembly takes place.Additionally, the unique mechanical properties of natural biocomposites like chitin/chitosan, the crustacean mineralized exoskeleton, the pliant protein resilin or insect and spider silks, have inspired basic and applied research that yield sophistical biomimetics and structural biocomposite hybrids important for future industrial and biomedical use. In summary, this book provides an invaluable vast source of basic and applied information for a plethora of scientists as well as textbook for graduate and advanced undergraduate students.
This book is a collection of cutting-edge studies on the functions and mechanisms of glycosylation in cancers. Along with progress in genomics and proteomics, new findings in the significance of these complex carbohydrates, through the regulation of cell signals, have been elucidated in a wide variety of biological events. This volume provides a comprehensive summary of glycosignals and their involvement in cancer, covering numerous topics such as glycosylation machineries, regulation of phenotypes, cell signaling, immune regulation, complex carbohydrate organization, and clinical applications. The contents have been organized to promote ready understanding, covering basic to clinical research and studies on micromolecules, to animal/human cells and tissues. This book is an essential read for students and young researchers interested in cancers and carbohydrates. Specialists in glycobiology will also benefit from the new results and approaches detailed here, which provide insights into future directions of functional studies of sugar chains in both basic and applied research.
Fluid dynamics plays a crucial role in many cellular processes, including the locomotion of cells such as bacteria and spermatozoa. These organisms possess flagella, slender organelles whose time periodic motion in a fluid environment gives rise to motility. Sitting at the intersection of applied mathematics, physics and biology, the fluid dynamics of cell motility is one of the most successful applications of mathematical tools to the understanding of the biological world. Based on courses taught over several years, it details the mathematical modelling necessary to understand cell motility in fluids, covering phenomena ranging from single-cell motion to instabilities in cell populations. Each chapter introduces mathematical models to rationalise experiments, uses physical intuition to interpret mathematical results, highlights the history of the field and discusses notable current research questions. All mathematical derivations are included for students new to the field, and end-of-chapter exercises help consolidate understanding and practise applying the concepts.
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