Monday, 5 August 2013

Tracking stem cells with nanodiamonds

In a study published this week in Nature Nanotechnology, researchers have reported a new method that can be used to track a single stem cell within mouse lung tissue using nanodiamonds. The researchers hope their method will offer new insight into the factors that determine the acceptance of transplanted stem cells and how they regenerate within a host.

The researchers, led by Huan-Cheng Chang, used fluorescent nanodiamonds to tag lung stem cells that were implanted in mice with damaged lungs. They discovered that not only did the damaged lung cells of the mice restore rapidly, but that the uptake and regeneration of stem cells could be tracked with single-cell resolution.

The research team suggests that, in the future, the technique could also be used to monitor the uptake of different kinds of stem cell, for instance bone marrow stem cells.

Tsai-Jung Wu, Yan-Kai Tzeng, Wei-Wei Chang, Chi-An Cheng, Yung Kuo, Chin-Hsiang Chien, Huan-Cheng Chang & John Yu (2013). Tracking the engraftment and regenerative capabilities of transplanted lung stem cells using fluorescent nanodiamonds Nature Nanotechnology DOI: 10.1038/nnano.2013.147

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