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News Article | May 17, 2017
Site: www.cemag.us

What sets this research apart from other labs is the architecture of the scaffold and the material, or “ink,” the scientists are using, says Ramille Shah, assistant professor of materials science and engineering at McCormick and of surgery at Feinberg. That material is gelatin, which is a biological hydrogel made from broken-down collagen that is safe to use in humans. The scientists knew that whatever scaffold they created needed to be made of organic materials that were rigid enough to be handled during surgery and porous enough to naturally interact with the mouse’s body tissues. “Most hydrogels are very weak, since they’re made up of mostly water, and will often collapse on themselves,” Shah says. “But we found a gelatin temperature that allows it to be self-supporting, not collapse, and lead to building multiple layers. No one else has been able to print gelatin with such well-defined and self-supported geometry.” That geometry directly links to whether or not the ovarian follicles, organized hormone-producing support cells surrounding an immature egg cell, will survive in the ovary, which was one of the bigger findings in the study. “This is the first study that demonstrates that scaffold architecture makes a difference in follicle survival,” Shah says. “We wouldn’t be able to do that if we didn’t use a 3D printer platform.” The scientists’ sole objective for developing the bioprosthetic ovaries was to help restore fertility and hormone production in women who have undergone adult cancer treatments or those who survived childhood cancer and now have increased risks of infertility and hormone-based developmental issues. “What happens with some of our cancer patients is that their ovaries don’t function at a high enough level and they need to use hormone replacement therapies in order to trigger puberty,” says Monica Laronda, co-lead author of this research and a former post-doctoral fellow in the Woodruff lab. “The purpose of this scaffold is to recapitulate how an ovary would function. We’re thinking big picture, meaning every stage of the girl’s life, so puberty through adulthood to a natural menopause.” Laronda is now an assistant professor at the Stanley Manne Children’s Research Institute at the Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital. Additionally, the successful creation of 3D printed implants to replace complex soft tissue could significantly impact future work in soft tissue regenerative medicine. 3D printing an ovary structure is similar to a child using Lincoln Logs, says Alexandra Rutz, co-lead author of the study and a former biomedical engineering graduate fellow in Shah’s Tissue Engineering and Additive Manufacturing (TEAM) lab at the Simpson Querrey Institute. Children can lay the logs at right angles to form structures. Depending on the distance between the logs, the structure changes to build a window or a door, etc. “3D printing is done by depositing filaments,” says Rutz, who is now a Whitaker International Postdoctoral Scholar at École Des Mines De Saint-Étienne in Gardanne, France. “You can control the distance between those filaments, as well as the advancing angle between layers, and that would give us different pore sizes and different pore geometries.” In Northwestern’s lab, the researchers call these 3D printed structures “scaffolds,” and liken them to the scaffolding that temporarily surrounds a building while it undergoes repairs. “Every organ has a skeleton,” says Woodruff, who also is the Thomas J. Watkins Memorial Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology and a member of the Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center of Northwestern University. “We learned what that ovary skeleton looked like and used it as model for the bioprosthetic ovary implant.” In a building, the scaffolding supports the materials needed to repair the building until it’s eventually removed. What’s left is a structure capable of holding itself up.  Similarly, the 3D printed “scaffold” or “skeleton” is implanted into a female and its pores can be used to optimize how follicles, or immature eggs, get wedged within the scaffold. The scaffold supports the survival of the mouse’s immature egg cells and the cells that produce hormones to boost production. The open structure also allows room for the egg cells to mature and ovulate, as well as blood vessels to form within the implant enabling the hormones to circulate within the mouse bloodstream and trigger lactation after giving birth. The all-female McCormick-Feinberg collaboration for this research was “very fruitful,” Shah says, adding that it was motivational to be part of an all-female team doing research towards finding solutions to female health issues. “What really makes a collaboration work are the personalities and being able to find the humor in the research,” Shah says. “Teresa and I joked that we’re grandparents of these pups.”


News Article | May 16, 2017
Site: www.eurekalert.org

CHICAGO --- The brave new world of 3-D printed organs now includes implanted ovary structures that, true to their design, actually ovulate, according to a study by Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine and McCormick School of Engineering. By removing a female mouse's ovary and replacing it with a bioprosthetic ovary, the mouse was able to not only ovulate but also give birth to healthy pups. The moms were even able to nurse their young. The bioprosthetic ovaries are constructed of 3-D printed scaffolds that house immature eggs, and have been successful in boosting hormone production and restoring fertility in mice, which was the ultimate goal of the research. "This research shows these bioprosthetic ovaries have long-term, durable function," said Teresa K. Woodruff, a reproductive scientist and director of the Women's Health Research Institute at Feinberg. "Using bioengineering, instead of transplanting from a cadaver, to create organ structures that function and restore the health of that tissue for that person, is the holy grail of bioengineering for regenerative medicine." The paper will be published May 16 in Nature Communications. How is this research different from other 3-D printed structures? What sets this research apart from other labs is the architecture of the scaffold and the material, or "ink," the scientists are using, said Ramille Shah, assistant professor of materials science and engineering at McCormick and of surgery at Feinberg. That material is gelatin, which is a biological hydrogel made from broken-down collagen that is safe to use in humans. The scientists knew that whatever scaffold they created needed to be made of organic materials that were rigid enough to be handled during surgery and porous enough to naturally interact with the mouse's body tissues. "Most hydrogels are very weak, since they're made up of mostly water, and will often collapse on themselves," Shah said. "But we found a gelatin temperature that allows it to be self-supporting, not collapse, and lead to building multiple layers. No one else has been able to print gelatin with such well-defined and self-supported geometry." That geometry directly links to whether or not the ovarian follicles, organized hormone-producing support cells surrounding an immature egg cell, will survive in the ovary, which was one of the bigger findings in the study. "This is the first study that demonstrates that scaffold architecture makes a difference in follicle survival," Shah said. "We wouldn't be able to do that if we didn't use a 3-D printer platform." How does this impact humans? The scientists' sole objective for developing the bioprosthetic ovaries was to help restore fertility and hormone production in women who have undergone adult cancer treatments or those who survived childhood cancer and now have increased risks of infertility and hormone-based developmental issues. "What happens with some of our cancer patients is that their ovaries don't function at a high enough level and they need to use hormone replacement therapies in order to trigger puberty," said Monica Laronda, co-lead author of this research and a former post-doctoral fellow in the Woodruff lab. "The purpose of this scaffold is to recapitulate how an ovary would function. We're thinking big picture, meaning every stage of the girl's life, so puberty through adulthood to a natural menopause." Laronda is now an assistant professor at the Stanley Manne Children's Research Institute at the Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children's Hospital. Additionally, the successful creation of 3-D printed implants to replace complex soft tissue could significantly impact future work in soft tissue regenerative medicine. 3-D printing an ovary structure is similar to a child using Lincoln Logs, said Alexandra Rutz, co-lead author of the study and a former biomedical engineering graduate fellow in Shah's Tissue Engineering and Additive Manufacturing (TEAM) lab at the Simpson Querrey Institute. Children can lay the logs at right angles to form structures. Depending on the distance between the logs, the structure changes to build a window or a door, etc. "3-D printing is done by depositing filaments," said Rutz, who is now a Whitaker International Postdoctoral Scholar at École Des Mines De Saint-Étienne in Gardanne, France. "You can control the distance between those filaments, as well as the advancing angle between layers, and that would give us different pore sizes and different pore geometries." In Northwestern's lab, the researchers call these 3-D printed structures "scaffolds," and liken them to the scaffolding that temporarily surrounds a building while it undergoes repairs. "Every organ has a skeleton," said Woodruff, who also is the Thomas J. Watkins Memorial Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology and a member of the Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center of Northwestern University. "We learned what that ovary skeleton looked like and used it as model for the bioprosthetic ovary implant." In a building, the scaffolding supports the materials needed to repair the building until it's eventually removed. What's left is a structure capable of holding itself up. Similarly, the 3-D printed "scaffold" or "skeleton" is implanted into a female and its pores can be used to optimize how follicles, or immature eggs, get wedged within the scaffold. The scaffold supports the survival of the mouse's immature egg cells and the cells that produce hormones to boost production. The open structure also allows room for the egg cells to mature and ovulate, as well as blood vessels to form within the implant enabling the hormones to circulate within the mouse bloodstream and trigger lactation after giving birth. The all-female McCormick-Feinberg collaboration for this research was "very fruitful," Shah said, adding that it was motivational to be part of an all-female team doing research towards finding solutions to female health issues. "What really makes a collaboration work are the personalities and being able to find the humor in the research," Shah said. "Teresa and I joked that we're grandparents of these pups." This work was supported by the Northwestern University Watkins Chair of Obstetrics and Gynecology; the National Institutes of Health (NIH) National Center for Translational Research in Reproduction and Infertility (NCTRI); grant P50HD076188 from the Center for Reproductive Health After Disease; grant UH3TR001207 from the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences (NCATS), Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD), National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS), Office of Women's Health Research (ORWH), and NIH Common Fund; grant 1K01DK099454-01 from the NIH; the Burroughs Welcome Fund Career Award at the Scienti?c Interface; and grant DGE-1324585 from the National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship Program. The University of Virginia Center for Research in Reproduction Ligand Assay and Analysis Core is supported by grant P50-HD28934 from the NICHD/NIH (NCTRI). Imaging work was performed at the Northwestern University Center for Advanced Microscopy generously supported by NCI CCSG P30 CA060553 awarded to the Robert H Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center. This work made use of the EPIC facility of the NUANCE Center at Northwestern University, which has received support from the Soft and Hybrid Nanotechnology Experimental (SHyNE) Resource (NSF NNCI-1542205); the MRSEC program (NSF DMR-1121262) at the Materials Research Center; the International Institute for Nanotechnology (IIN); the Keck Foundation; and the State of Illinois, through the IIN.


The Request for Proposals (RFP) issued by NCCN and Pfizer strongly encourages proposals that address the use of clinical pathways in community centers, low-resource centers, and centers that focus on the treatment of underserved patients with cancer. All U.S.-based organizations, including NCCN Member Institutions, community affiliates of NCCN Member Institutions and other academic medical centers, and community cancer centers are encouraged to submit proposals. "NCCN recognizes the emerging role of evidence-based clinical care pathways in cancer, and we are pleased to once again align with Pfizer IGLC to improve the quality of care of people with breast cancer, particularly those in underserved communities across the United States," said Susan Most, RN, MBA Director, Clinical Operations, NCCN ORP. The RFP seeks proposals in two specific areas of interest: The NCCN ORP, organized to obtain funding to support scientifically meritorious research studies at NCCN Member Institutions and other centers, leads the organization for review and evaluation of applications. A review committee, led by NCCN and including a medical representative from Pfizer, will decide which proposals will receive funding. Grant funding will be provided by Pfizer IGLC. The RFP deadline is June 26, 2017. For more information about NCCN ORP and view the RFP, visit NCCN.org/ORP. About the National Comprehensive Cancer Network The National Comprehensive Cancer Network® (NCCN®), a not-for-profit alliance of 27 leading cancer centers devoted to patient care, research, and education, is dedicated to improving the quality, effectiveness, and efficiency of cancer care so that patients can live better lives. Through the leadership and expertise of clinical professionals at NCCN Member Institutions, NCCN develops resources that present valuable information to the numerous stakeholders in the health care delivery system. As the arbiter of high-quality cancer care, NCCN promotes the importance of continuous quality improvement and recognizes the significance of creating clinical practice guidelines appropriate for use by patients, clinicians, and other health care decision-makers. The NCCN Member Institutions are: Fred & Pamela Buffett Cancer Center, Omaha, NE; Case Comprehensive Cancer Center/University Hospitals Seidman Cancer Center and Cleveland Clinic Taussig Cancer Institute, Cleveland, OH; City of Hope Comprehensive Cancer Center, Los Angeles, CA; Dana-Farber/Brigham and Women's Cancer Center | Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center, Boston, MA; Duke Cancer Institute, Durham, NC; Fox Chase Cancer Center, Philadelphia, PA; Huntsman Cancer Institute at the University of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT; Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center/Seattle Cancer Care Alliance, Seattle, WA; The Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center at Johns Hopkins, Baltimore, MD; Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center of Northwestern University, Chicago, IL; Mayo Clinic Cancer Center, Phoenix/Scottsdale, AZ, Jacksonville, FL, and Rochester, MN; Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, New York, NY; Moffitt Cancer Center, Tampa, FL; The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center - James Cancer Hospital and Solove Research Institute, Columbus, OH; Roswell Park Cancer Institute, Buffalo, NY; Siteman Cancer Center at Barnes-Jewish Hospital and Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis, MO; St. Jude Children's Research Hospital/The University of Tennessee Health Science Center, Memphis, TN; Stanford Cancer Institute, Stanford, CA; University of Alabama at Birmingham Comprehensive Cancer Center, Birmingham, AL; UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center, La Jolla, CA; UCSF Helen Diller Family Comprehensive Cancer Center, San Francisco, CA; University of Colorado Cancer Center, Aurora, CO; University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center, Ann Arbor, MI; The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX; University of Wisconsin Carbone Cancer Center, Madison, WI; Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center, Nashville, TN; and Yale Cancer Center/Smilow Cancer Hospital, New Haven, CT. To view the original version on PR Newswire, visit:http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/nccn-and-pfizer-address-quality-improvement-in-breast-cancer-through-clinical-pathways-300460672.html


News Article | May 19, 2017
Site: www.prweb.com

The Lymphoma Research Foundation (LRF) – the nation’s largest non-profit organization devoted exclusively to funding innovative lymphoma research and serving the lymphoma community through a comprehensive series of education programs, outreach initiatives and patient services – will bring together locally and nationally recognized experts in wine, food and the arts for its second annual Swirl: A Wine Tasting Event in Chicago on Thursday, June 1, 2017. Southern Glazer's Wine & Spirits will again partner with the Lymphoma Research Foundation to present a selection of world-class wines from the Napa Valley region, with proceeds benefiting the innovative research programs supported by LRF. Held once again at the private residence of LRF Board Member Joseph Ferraro, LRF will host the renowned Serafin Alvarado, Master Sommelier and Director of Wine Education at Southern Glazer's Wine & Spirits of Illinois, who will present and review a selection of Napa Valley vintages throughout the evening. Acclaimed artist Francine Turk will also be on hand to conduct a specially-commissioned live art demonstration, and award-winning restaurant RPM Italian will serve as the evening’s in-kind catering partner. "Following the success of last year’s inaugural Swirl: Chicago event, we at Southern Glazer's Wine & Spirits are incredibly excited to continue our partnership with the Lymphoma Research Foundation to bring together enthusiasts in the Chicago wine, food, and arts scene for the benefit of such a tremendous cause," said Kevin Fennessey, Executive Vice President of Commercial Operations at Southern Glazer’s and member of LRF Board of Directors. Each year, more than 1,700 people in the state of Illinois alone alone are diagnosed with lymphoma – the most common form of blood cancer, and last year’s inaugural Swirl: Chicago, has raised more than $105,000 in support of the Lymphoma Research Foundation and its mission to eradicate lymphoma and serve those impacted by this blood cancer. Swirl: Chicago is held in conjunction with the American Society of Clinical Oncology’s (ASCO’s) Annual Meeting, held annually at McCormick Place in June. “The funds raised throughout the Swirl: A Wine Tasting Event Series, and particularly in Chicago, has had an incredible impact on our ability to fund some of today’s most exciting and promising lymphoma-specific research programs,” said Meghan Gutierrez, LRF Chief Executive Officer. “We’d like to once again thank Southern Glazer's Wine & Spirits, whose continued generosity has enabled Swirl to become such a tremendous success across the nation, as well as Francine Turk and RPM Italian for helping to make this year’s Swirl: Chicago a staple of the Chicago cultural and philanthropic community.” Sheyla Conforte & Joseph Ferraro and Laura & Michael Werner will serve as this year’s presenting sponsors, as well as serve on the evening’s Host Committee. Joining them are Eric Cohen, LRF Board of Directors, and Leo I. Gordon, MD, FACP, Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center of Northwestern University, Chair of the LRF Scientific Advisory Board, Thomas M. Habermann, MD, Mayo Clinic College of Medicine, Chair-elect of the LRF Scientific Advisory Board, John P. Leonard, MD, New York-Presbyterian Hospital, Weill Cornell Medicine, Immediate Past-Chair of the LRF Scientific Advisory Board, and Sonali M. Smith, MD, the University of Chicago Medicine, Member of the LRF Scientific Advisory Board. For more information about Swirl Chicago and/or to purchase tickets, please contact Taylor Zitay Kahn at 646-465-9103 or visit lymphoma.org/SwirlChicago. About the Lymphoma Research Foundation The Lymphoma Research Foundation (LRF) is the nation’s largest non-profit organization devoted to funding innovative research and serving the lymphoma community through a comprehensive series of education programs, outreach initiatives and patient services. To date, LRF has awarded nearly $60 million in lymphoma-specific research. For additional information on LRF’s research, education and services, visit lymphoma.org.


News Article | May 17, 2017
Site: www.cemag.us

What sets this research apart from other labs is the architecture of the scaffold and the material, or “ink,” the scientists are using, says Ramille Shah, assistant professor of materials science and engineering at McCormick and of surgery at Feinberg. That material is gelatin, which is a biological hydrogel made from broken-down collagen that is safe to use in humans. The scientists knew that whatever scaffold they created needed to be made of organic materials that were rigid enough to be handled during surgery and porous enough to naturally interact with the mouse’s body tissues. “Most hydrogels are very weak, since they’re made up of mostly water, and will often collapse on themselves,” Shah says. “But we found a gelatin temperature that allows it to be self-supporting, not collapse, and lead to building multiple layers. No one else has been able to print gelatin with such well-defined and self-supported geometry.” That geometry directly links to whether or not the ovarian follicles, organized hormone-producing support cells surrounding an immature egg cell, will survive in the ovary, which was one of the bigger findings in the study. “This is the first study that demonstrates that scaffold architecture makes a difference in follicle survival,” Shah says. “We wouldn’t be able to do that if we didn’t use a 3D printer platform.” The scientists’ sole objective for developing the bioprosthetic ovaries was to help restore fertility and hormone production in women who have undergone adult cancer treatments or those who survived childhood cancer and now have increased risks of infertility and hormone-based developmental issues. “What happens with some of our cancer patients is that their ovaries don’t function at a high enough level and they need to use hormone replacement therapies in order to trigger puberty,” says Monica Laronda, co-lead author of this research and a former post-doctoral fellow in the Woodruff lab. “The purpose of this scaffold is to recapitulate how an ovary would function. We’re thinking big picture, meaning every stage of the girl’s life, so puberty through adulthood to a natural menopause.” Laronda is now an assistant professor at the Stanley Manne Children’s Research Institute at the Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital. Additionally, the successful creation of 3D printed implants to replace complex soft tissue could significantly impact future work in soft tissue regenerative medicine. 3D printing an ovary structure is similar to a child using Lincoln Logs, says Alexandra Rutz, co-lead author of the study and a former biomedical engineering graduate fellow in Shah’s Tissue Engineering and Additive Manufacturing (TEAM) lab at the Simpson Querrey Institute. Children can lay the logs at right angles to form structures. Depending on the distance between the logs, the structure changes to build a window or a door, etc. “3D printing is done by depositing filaments,” says Rutz, who is now a Whitaker International Postdoctoral Scholar at École Des Mines De Saint-Étienne in Gardanne, France. “You can control the distance between those filaments, as well as the advancing angle between layers, and that would give us different pore sizes and different pore geometries.” In Northwestern’s lab, the researchers call these 3D printed structures “scaffolds,” and liken them to the scaffolding that temporarily surrounds a building while it undergoes repairs. “Every organ has a skeleton,” says Woodruff, who also is the Thomas J. Watkins Memorial Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology and a member of the Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center of Northwestern University. “We learned what that ovary skeleton looked like and used it as model for the bioprosthetic ovary implant.” In a building, the scaffolding supports the materials needed to repair the building until it’s eventually removed. What’s left is a structure capable of holding itself up.  Similarly, the 3D printed “scaffold” or “skeleton” is implanted into a female and its pores can be used to optimize how follicles, or immature eggs, get wedged within the scaffold. The scaffold supports the survival of the mouse’s immature egg cells and the cells that produce hormones to boost production. The open structure also allows room for the egg cells to mature and ovulate, as well as blood vessels to form within the implant enabling the hormones to circulate within the mouse bloodstream and trigger lactation after giving birth. The all-female McCormick-Feinberg collaboration for this research was “very fruitful,” Shah says, adding that it was motivational to be part of an all-female team doing research towards finding solutions to female health issues. “What really makes a collaboration work are the personalities and being able to find the humor in the research,” Shah says. “Teresa and I joked that we’re grandparents of these pups.”

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