In the News
March 4, 2014 — Sean Morrison, Ph.D., Director of the Children’s Research Institute, recently delivered a President’s Lecture Series presentation, Understanding Cancer Through the Lens of Stem Cell Biology, on the campus of UT Southwestern. Afterward, he expanded on his remarks during a discussion on stem cells and aging. Read an excerpt of his comments.
Jan. 22, 2014 — Scientists have known for years that stem cells in male and female sexual organs are regulated differently by their respective hormones. In a surprising discovery, researchers at the Children’s Medical Center Research Institute at UT Southwestern (CRI) and Baylor College of Medicine have found that stem cells in the blood-forming system — which is similar in both sexes — also are regulated differently by hormones, with estrogen proving to be an especially prolific promoter of stem cell self-renewal.
Jan. 15, 2014 — The potential for understanding how the biological setting that sustains blood-forming stem cells is involved in normal and disease physiology promises new approaches to treating blood disorders. Defining niche components and how they work together to regulate blood formation provides the opportunity to not only improve regeneration following injury or blood-forming stem cell transplantation, but also to understand how disordered niche function could contribute to disease.
Sean Morrison, Ph.D., Director of the Children’s Research Institute at UT Southwestern (CRI), has co-authored an evaluation of research on the blood-forming stem cell niche in bone marrow — the primary environment for the cells’ maintenance and self-renewal — bringing past discoveries into context and looking ahead to questions that still need to be addressed. Read the research review published in Nature.
Nov. 27, 2013 — Researchers at the Children’s Medical Center Research Institute at UT Southwestern (CRI), the University of California at San Francisco and the University of Michigan have solved a mystery that has stumped scientists for years, discovering how leukemia-causing mutations enable pre-leukemic stem cells to outperform their healthy counterparts.
Nov. 7, 2013 — Two groups of scientists at the Children’s Medical Center Research Institute at UT Southwestern have made complementary discoveries that break new ground on efforts to turn back the body’s clock on cellular activity, paving the way for a better understanding of stem cells, tissue growth and regeneration.
Sept. 19, 2013 — Previously published research has suggested that the properties of cancer stem cells can explain a variety of unsolved clinical problems. However, new experimental approaches have provided additional perspective and insight regarding the extent to which metastasis, therapy resistance and disease progression reflect the intrinsic properties of cancer stem cells as opposed to genetic evolution or other sources of variation in cancer cell properties.
Sean Morrison, Ph.D., Director of the Children’s Research Institute at UT Southwestern (CRI), and Corbin Meacham, Ph.D., an American Cancer Society Fellow at CRI, have evaluated the implications of new data for the cancer stem-cell model and the degree to which the model accounts for clinically important aspects of disease progression, like therapy resistance and metastatic dissemination. Read their research review published in Nature.
Aug. 26, 2013 — Sean Morrison, Ph.D., Director of the Children’s Research Institute at UT Southwestern, recently hosted a discussion on stem cell research at a Science Café event sponsored by the Perot Museum of Nature and Science. Read an excerpt of his remarks.
July 10, 2013 — Scientists led by Sean Morrison, Ph.D., Director of the Children’s Research Institute at UT Southwestern, have solved a problem that has long impeded researchers in their quest to understand the properties of blood-forming stem cells and their more specialized offspring.
They have discovered that combined use of a related family of cell surface receptors known as SLAM family markers can distinguish several biologically distinct subpopulations of stem cells and multipotent progenitors in the blood-forming system. This in turn has provided a way to study the distinct properties of each of these cell populations with greater precision than previously was possible.
As part of their research, Dr. Morrison and his team also examined the microenvironment in the bone marrow that nurtures the earliest blood-forming stem cells and discovered that these cells are all maintained in a perivascular niche created by endothelial cells and perivascular stromal cells associated with blood vessels.
The pair of discoveries will improve the ability of scientists to work toward reproducing blood-forming stem cells in the lab and increasing the safety and effectiveness of blood-forming stem cell transplants. Read the published research in Cell Stem Cell.
May 16, 2013 — Scientists in Oregon recently created patient-specific embryonic stem cells through cloning, an achievement that brings with it a number of ethical considerations. In an interview with NPR, Sean Morrison, Ph.D., Director of the Children’s Research Institute at UT Southwestern, joined other stem cell biology experts in discussing the research’s implications.
April 12, 2013 — Sean Morrison, Ph.D., Director of the Children’s Research Institute at UT Southwestern, has been elected the new vice president of the International Society for Stem Cell Research (ISSCR). Dr. Morrison will serve as vice president for the 2013-2014 term beginning in June, after which he will become president-elect for the 2014-2015 term and then president of ISSCR for the 2015-2016 term. ISSCR is an independent, nonprofit organization with more than 3,500 members worldwide. It was established in 2002 to promote and foster the exchange and dissemination of information and ideas relating to stem cell research. More information about ISSCR is available here.