Professor of Stem Cell Sciences
Newcastle University, UK
Maya Sieber-Blum received her education at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, the University of Basel, and the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. She is currently Professor of Stem Cell Sciences at the Institute of Genetic Medicine and the North East England Stem Cell Institute at Newcastle University in Newcastle upon Tyne, UK.
major neural crest derivatives, including bone/cartilage cells, neurons, Schwann cells, myofibroblasts and melanocytes. A protocol for the ex vivo expansion of hEPI-NCSC into millions of stem cells has been developed. Furthermore, protocols have been developed for the directed differentiation of hEPI-NCSC into osteocytes (Clewes et al 2011 and unpublished), melanoyctes (Clewes O et al 2011 and unpublished), dopamnergic neurons (unpublished) and sensory neurons (unpublished). The novelty of hEPI-NCSC lies in the combination of their highly desirable traits. They are readily accessible in the hairy skin by minimal invasive procedures. hEPI-NCSC are multipotent somatic stem cells that can be isolated reproducibly and with high yield. By taking advantage of their migratory ability, hEPI-NCSC can be isolated as a highly pure population of stem cells. hEPI-NCSC can undergo robust ex vivo expansion and directed differentiation. As somatic stem cells, hEPI-NCSC are conducive to autologous transplantation, which avoids graft rejection. Together, these traits make hEPI-NCSC novel and attractive candidates for future cell-based therapies and regenerative medicine.