Sajid Nisar, Ph.D., Dr.Eng., Kyoto University of Advanced Science; Rafaella Di Micco, Ph.D., San Rafaele Telethon Institute for Gene Therapy; Andrea Pavesi, Ph.D., Institute of Molecular and Cell Biology, A*STAR
Competition Sponsor: Japan Agency for Medical Research and Development
The main objective of this research is to understand the molecular mechanisms associated with dysfunctions in human hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) during aging. As by 2050, approximately 15% of the world population will be aged 65 and older, and increased life-expectancy poses unprecedented challenges of progressive degenerative changes in tissues and organs, including the hematopoietic system. Therefore, there is an urgent unmet need to face age-associated cellular dysfunctions and promote healthy aging. We aim to develop mechanism-based strategies to increase functionality of aged HSC, specifically for regenerative medicine applications, immune reconstitution, and cancer prevention. By employing advanced 3-D models and chemical screening of the differentially identified age-specific pathways, we attempt to boost aged HSCs’ functionality. The novelty of our proposed study is that it would be among the first molecular study to generate a “blueprint” of human aged HSCs with the final goal to recover and enhance the health and longevity of the aged human hematopoietic system.
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