Stem Cells, Scaffolds, Three Dimensions

Science Daily reports on the continuing realization that moving into the third dimension makes a big difference to stem cell research: "In conventional cell cultures, cells usually grow as flat deposits bathed in growth medium. ... Specific genes, proteins and hormones normally produced by healthy cells are often absent in two-dimensional colonies. ... Researchers here have used a new microscopic, three-dimensional scaffolding to coax mouse stem cells to transform themselves into fat cells, and then to function identically to how fat cells naturally do in the body. ... This discovery offers hope of a new approach to growing fat tissue for use in breast reconstruction surgery and other clinical needs, and may even be important for curing [age-related] diabetes."


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