We’re developing a technological toolbox.
These stem cells have the unique ability to give rise to every cell type in our body, for example, skin, nerve cells, or liver. This makes them extremely useful for medical research. These cells do not exist naturally in the adult human body, but are made in the lab from simple skin cells. We can make these cells “forget” their skin identity and turn them into stem cells that can then generate virtually every cell in our body. This cell “reprogramming” is an ingenious biochemical process that enables us to make stem cells from patients and study their diseases in a petridish.
My group is using stem cells to study genetic disorders that currently have no cure. It’s a real challenge to ‘fix’ genetic errors in human cells. We’re developing a technological toolbox, creating new methods for the repair of disease-causing gene mutations. Applicability, efficiency and safety are important focus point of the research process. Our hope and goal is to develop our gene-editing technologies into practical applications for gene repair in the clinic.
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