The following research institutions will be collaborating with SDSU in the Stem Cell Internship Program. It is within these institutes that our students will increase their knowledge of both stem cell biology and the hands-on techniques required to carry out stem cell research. The collaboration with these institutes will also forge collaborative research projects between our SDSU faculty and researchers at the internship host institutions.
Salk Institute for Biological Studies
At Salk, research is a multipronged approach. Those groups working together at the Glenn Center for Aging Research include:
- Genetic Analysis Group
- The Center's Genetic Analysis Group capitalizes on its expertise in a variety of cell types to explore new questions about key genetic pathways involved in cell maintenance and aging, and fully investigates how newly defined genes alter the aging process.
- Stem Cell Group
- While scientists have learned that stem cells' capacity to self-renew and differentiate into functioning cells dramatically decrease during the aging process, they still do not know how or why. The Glenn Center's Stem Cell Group studies the specific molecular components associated with aging in stem cells. These studies can help elucidate the procedure stem cells establish to stay healthy - which could explain why and how humans age.
- Metabolism Group
- Likewise, the Metabolism Group seeks to understand the molecular underpinnings associated with decreased metabolism and the aging process. Specifically, the group looks at how aging affects metabolism across key organ systems and attempts to explain how restrictive diets can alter the expression of different genetic programs.
The Scripps Research Institute (TSRI)
The purpose of the TSRI Center for Regenerative Medicine is to serve as a nexus for stem cell research at TSRI and the San Diego research community. In order to reach this community they provide the following:
Periodic courses for TSRI and community researchers in how to culture stem cells
Serve as a resource for researchers having difficulties with basic stem cell techniques
Provide a stem cell lecture series
Facilitate collaborations between researchers
Our students will begin their experience in a two-week mini-course that at the TSRI Center for Regenerative Medicine. This course provides "beginning and advanced training in human pluripotent stem cell methods."
For further information regarding TSRI, see their website: scripps.edu
Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute
The Del E. Webb Neuroscience, Aging and Stem Cell Research Center was established in 1999 with the aim to develop novel strategies for either protecting existing cells or replacing cells lost due to disease. The Center has capabilities more commonly found in large pharmaceutical companies when it comes to taking basic research and translating it into compounds that could become the prototype medicines of tomorrow.
NASCR exists to advance understanding and treatment of degenerative diseases, as well as the normal aging process. A key feature of the Center is its basic molecular approach coupled with the intent to spearhead translational research in a systems-wide manner, which will expedite the pathway from bench science to clinical trials in order to develop new therapeutic approaches.
Our two main missions are (1) to produce new drugs to protect the brain, heart, and pancreas, and (2) to develop regenerative brain, heart, and diabetes therapies using stem cells. There are three primary programs in our Center to help us accomplish this mission:
Neurodegenerative Disease Research
Stem Cells and Regenerative Medicine
Development and Aging
For further information regarding SBMRI, see their website: sanfordburnham.org
CalAsia's mission is to accelerate seminal academic discoveries into safe and effective treatments for both unmet and under-served medical needs. It is a privately held early stage pharmaceutical company focused on the rapid discovery of drug-like small molecules through development and execution of its expanding core technologies. CalAsia also employs an academically advanced stem cell technology platform to evaluate lead drug candidates for proof of concept using patient-derived human induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSC). This robust technology allows comprehensive in vitro evaluation of late-stage lead compounds in relevant human disease cell-based models prior to transitioning into expensive clinical trials, thus aiding in efficient progression of lead compound development through preclinical stages. Currently, CalAsia has ongoing drug discovery programs for development of effective treatments that span a multitude of clinical specialties, including degenerative CNS disorders, metabolic disorders, cardiovascular disease, cancer, and infectious diseases
Sanford Consortium for Regenerative Medicine
In December of 2011 the Sanford Consortium for Regenerative Medicine brought together five collaborating institutions with a proven track record of scientific excellence, including 95 National Academy of Sciences members and 14 Nobel Prize winners. In the past they have also successfully translated basic research into more than 200 spin-off companies and taken 24 products to commercial markets together under a single roof at its new world-class facility. The Sanford Burnham Medical Research Institute, The Salk Institute, The Scripps Research Institute, The University of California, San Diego, and The La Jolla Institute for Allergy and Immunology formed a “Collaboratory” to expand collaborative work in stem cell research and facilitate its translation into clinical cures. It will enable scientists to informally share intellectual capital. As a result, research will proceed faster, smarter and more effectively.
In addition to shaping the future of stem cell science, the Sanford Consortium will shape scientific leadership for the region and industry. Top researchers from around the world will work side-by-side with tomorrow's leaders in a synergistic environment.
University of California at San Diego (UCSD)There are a number of investigators that our students will be working with at UCSD. Many in conjunction with the UCSD Human Stem Cell Core Facility.
"The UCSD Human Stem Cell Core Facility is an integral component of UC San Diego's commitment to Human Embryonic Stem Cell (hESC) research. Karl Willert, Ph.D., directs this lab, dedicated to maintaining and characterizing established human embryonic stem cell lines, training scientists in the basic techniques to work with these cells, and providing laboratory space to conduct research on the cell lines.
The facility maintains, monitors and banks previously established hESC lines. Since hESCs tend to differentiate and even mutate spontaneously in culture, all the lines available at the core facility are routinely monitored to ensure that their genomic integrity and undifferentiated state are maintained. The facility provides training for those wishing to utilize hESCs as a model system. Techniques of manipulating hESC in culture can be challenging, and the facility helps researchers learn techniques that can be used later to initiate hESC research in their own labs.
Space is provided to researchers to conduct their own research, fostering collaborations and interactions between researchers and laboratories around UCSD. As the core facility is exclusively supported with non-federal funds, it serves as a "safe haven" in which researchers can work with cell lines which are not listed in the National Institutes of Health's hESC registry. For those investigators whose labs are partially supported with federal money, the 'safe haven' can help them avoid a conflict between their federally and non-federally funded research projects."
For further information regarding UCSD's stem cell research, see their website: stemcells.ucsd.edu