Helen L. Spencer

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Epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) occurs during embryonic development and may also be associated with the metastatic spread of epithelial tumors. During EMT, E-cadherin is down-regulated and this correlates with increased motility and invasion of cells. We show that differentiation of human embryonic stem (ES) cells in monolayer culture is associated(More)
Epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) events occur during embryonic development and are important for the metastatic spread of epithelial tumors. We show here that spontaneous differentiation of mouse embryonic stem (ES) cells is associated with an E- to N-cadherin switch, up-regulation of E-cadherin repressor molecules (Snail and Slug proteins),(More)
OBJECTIVE To develop an embryoid body-free directed differentiation protocol for the rapid generation of functional vascular endothelial cells derived from human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) and to assess the system for microRNA regulation and angiogenesis. METHODS AND RESULTS The production of defined cell lineages from hESCs is a critical requirement(More)
Extreme corneal fragility and thinning, which have a high risk of catastrophic spontaneous rupture, are the cardinal features of brittle cornea syndrome (BCS), an autosomal-recessive generalized connective tissue disorder. Enucleation is frequently the only management option for this condition, resulting in blindness and psychosocial distress. Even when the(More)
RATIONALE Optimization of cell therapy for cardiac repair may require the association of different cell populations with complementary activities. OBJECTIVE Compare the reparative potential of saphenous vein-derived pericytes (SVPs) with that of cardiac stem cells (CSCs) in a model of myocardial infarction, and investigate whether combined cell(More)
OBJECTIVE We investigated the association between the functional, epigenetic, and expressional profile of human adventitial progenitor cells (APCs) and therapeutic activity in a model of limb ischemia. APPROACH AND RESULTS Antigenic and functional features were analyzed throughout passaging in 15 saphenous vein (SV)-derived APC lines, of which 10 from SV(More)
BACKGROUND Living grafts produced by combining autologous heart-resident stem/progenitor cells and tissue engineering could provide a new therapeutic option for definitive correction of congenital heart disease. The aim of the study was to investigate the antigenic profile, expansion/differentiation capacity, paracrine activity, and pro-angiogenic potential(More)
Chemokine-directed migration is crucial for homing of regenerative cells to the infarcted heart and correlates with outcomes of cell therapy trials. Hence, transplantation of chemokine-responsive bone marrow cells may be ideal for treatment of myocardial ischemia. To verify the therapeutic activity of bone marrow mononuclear cells (BM-MNCs) selected by in(More)
Brittle cornea syndrome (BCS; MIM 229200) is an autosomal recessive generalized connective tissue disorder caused by mutations in ZNF469 and PRDM5. It is characterized by extreme thinning and fragility of the cornea that may rupture in the absence of significant trauma leading to blindness. Keratoconus or keratoglobus, high myopia, blue sclerae,(More)
The use of gene mutation/knock-out strategies in mouse embryonic stem (ES) cells has revolutionized the study of gene function in ES cells and embryonic development. However, the construction of vectors for homologous recombination strategies requires considerable expertise and time. We describe two novel vectors that can generate site specific knock-out or(More)