Slack Lab (retired)
Research InterestsRegeneration in Xenopus & Therapuetic applications for induced pluripotent stem cells.
Research AreaResearch included:Respecification of cell type & Regeneration Different cell types can sometimes be interconverted by introduction of genes for the appropriate transcription factors. The transcription factors that are effective are those that control formation of the relevant tissues and cell types during normal embryonic development. The ability to make induced pluripotent stem cells (iPS cells) is a particularly spectacular example of this principle, but many other transformations are possible that do not involve a complete reversion to pluripotent behavior. We are interested in possible therapeutic applications of this technique, especially in relation to the production of pancreatic beta cells from developmentally related cell types such as hepatocytes. Current projects are being conducted both in vitro and in vivo, using viral vectors to introduce the genes. Regeneration Some animals are able to regenerate missing parts. Among these are the tadpoles which represent the juvenile stage of frog development. Understanding the cellular and molecular mechanisms of these regeneration processes could have important implications for human health. We are presently studying the mechanisms of regeneration of the limbs, the spinal cord, and the muscle in the Xenopus tadpole tail. We are also interested in applying the technology of cell type respecification (above) to confer regenerative ability on tissues that do not normally regenerate.
Current MembersSlack, Jonathan M.W. (Principal Investigator/Director) Contact
ContactInstitution: Stem Cell Institute, Univ. of Minnesota Address:
Stem Cell Institute
University of Minnesota
McGuire Translational Research Facility
2001 6th Street SE, Mail Code 2873
General/Lab Phone: (612) 624-2449.
Phone: (612) 625-0602