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UW-Madison work on stem cells, cardiac health to be presented at ACS

MADISON - Several University of Wisconsin-Madison engineers will present findings at the American Chemical Society's national meeting, held through Thursday, Sept. 14, in San Francisco. Among them, two presentations will highlight research that could benefit cardiac health and stem cell research.

Clearing clogged arteries with DNA-coated stents

CONTACT: David M. Lynn, (608) 262-1086, dlynn@engr.wisc.edu

New materials hold promise for treating cardiovascular diseases with gene-based therapy using intravascular stents, small tubes of metal mesh that are commonly inserted into arteries to keep them open after angioplasty. Led by chemical and biological engineer David M. Lynn, a team has developed methods to coat stents with films of nanostructured layers of DNA and cationic polymers. The polymers degrade and DNA is released into the surrounding cells.

This approach is similar to current stents coated with small-molecule drugs. "While current stent coatings work well for releasing traditional drugs, they were not designed to release nucleic acid-based drugs," says Lynn.

One important application of localized gene-based therapy is the prevention of restenosis, a common problem with metal stents, in which smooth muscle tissue grows over and around the stent, which can re-clog the artery.

Lynn will present his findings at 8:50 a.m. on Thursday, Sept. 14, in the B1 salon of the San Francisco Marriott. He will be available for questions after the session.


Improving stem cell production

CONTACT: Juan de Pablo, (608) 262-7727, depablo@engr.wisc.edu

In a typical culture, human embryonic stem cells (hESC) grow in colonies that are mixed in size and shape. These colonies often spontaneously differentiate, making it time- and labor-intensive to maintain undifferentiated cells.

Gradu
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Contact: David M. Lynn
dlynn@engr.wisc.edu
608-262-1086
University of Wisconsin-Madison
11-Sep-2006


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