u-stem courses will consist of a series of elective and interactive activities held by international recognized experts in the field of stem cells, gene therapy and tissue engineering. Participants will then have the opportunity to attend the research laboratories of teachers with the aim:
i) to carry out practical laboratory experiments on how to grow, differentiate and manipulate stem cells;
ii) to learn the mechanisms / techniques of gene editing and transplantation of stem cells in experimental models,
iii) to increase / implement the knowledge and creativity for formulating, then resolving a scientific problem.
iv) know how to do a critical analysis of scientific results
v) communicating results.
Upon completion of the master, students can expect to work in basic or applied research in different fields of stem cell biology and gene editing, either by undertaking a PhD, or by finding employment in the research and development professions in the academic and private research institutes, in non-profit foundations, or in corporate sectors, particularly in the field of biotechnology and regenerative medicine. Courses will be focusing on preparing students for the following jobs/careers :
i) Academic research
ii) Non academic research applied to human disease
iii) Regulatory agencies responsible for setting standards in stem cell and genome editing for clinical applications
iv) Good manufacturing practice (GMP) laboratories for stem cell and tissue engineering
v) Ethics committees
u-stem faculty members will support students to help with contacts for exploring job opportunities and with indications for preparing job interviews.
Module 1: A comprehensive discussion on adult stem cells including mesenchymal, hematopoietic, neural, epithelial, muscle, and liver stem cells. Critical evaluation of the concept of cancer stem cells. Discussion on the role of tissue niche on stem cell activity. Stem cells and aging. Comparison between mammalian and plant stem cells. Application of stem cell biology to treat disease. Tutor Antonio Musaro' 12 CFUs
Module 2 Pluripotent stem cell biology. Classroom and laboratory experience in the techniques for deriving, culturing and differentiating human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs). Tutor Alessandro Rosa 6 CFUs
Module 3 Seminars on the historical path towards the definition of the stemness and regeneration concepts. Classroom case study discussion on bioethics of stem cells and genome editing. Tutor Gilberto Corbellini 2 CFUs
Module 4 Lectures on gene therapy and genome editing in stem cells for disease correction. Student led “mock trial” on Crispr technology - pros and cons for research and clinical applications. Group activity of research project simulation. Tutors Isabella Saggio and Fiammetta Verni’ 6 CFUs
Module 5 Epigenetic of stem cells for the analysis of molecular networks regulating self-renew and differentiation in stem cells, with a particular emphasis on transcriptional and post-transcriptional regulation of pluripotency. Tutor Domenico Raimondo 4 CFUs
Module 6 Bioinformatics classroom and laboratory on high-throughput biological assays, downstream analytics, data visualization and interpretation of results, customised database queries and information extraction. Tutor Domenico Raimondo 2 CFUs
Modules 7 and 8 Seminars addressing the business, legal, manufacturing and regulatory aspects involved in moving stem cells or related product into clinical practice. Tutors Luca Pani and Gilberto Corbellini. 4 CFUs
Seminars and Laboratory Reading and discussion of recent papers by a selection of external speakers, and attendance at the speaker’s seminars. Classroom discussion on how to build a presentation for various audiences on topics related to stem cell biology and regenerative medicine. 8 CFUs
Stage Independent research conducted under the guidance of faculty supervisor in basic and applied stem cell research, gene therapy and regenerative medicine in u-stem Core labs in Italy and abroad. Students will be encouraged to develop a wide a range of skills in order to gain concrete insights into job placement opportunities. At least two different labs will have to be chosen by u-stem students. If a non-Italian lab is also selected, the internship is supported by the 2000 euros u-stem fellowship. 10 CFUs
Final exam Writing, in the form of a scientific paper, of a scientific patent, or of a clinical trial submission, a report related with the scientific work performed during the internship. 6 CFUs