Stem Cell Research Hub Planned at TUMS

The center will operate as a permanent hub, preventing dispersion of information, resources, and research.The center will operate as a permanent hub, preventing dispersion of information, resources, and research.

Tehran University of Medical Sciences plans to set up a Comprehensive Center for Reproductive Biomedicine and Stem Cells Research and a memorandum of understanding has been signed between the university and the Vice Presidency for Science and Technology, announced Chancellor Dr. Ali Jafarian on Monday.

“This center will operate as a permanent hub, under the TUMS to concentrate all activities in one single place and prevent dispersion of information, resources, and research,” he said at a meeting with Ali Khademhosseini, professor at Harvard Medical School, who will be cooperating in the project.

The two explored avenues of cooperation, and the ways in which Khademhosseini will be contributing to the development of the research center after he briefed the meeting on his past experiences in the field, Mehr News Agency reported.

“The project is approved and supported by the Vice Presidency for Science and Technology, and the government’s support will boost scientific growth,” said Jafarian.

TUMS has carried out the feasibility studies for the location of the center and a building owned by the university is ready for the purpose.

In addition to exchanging experience and knowledge, the Harvard professor will also contribute in training PhD students and researchers as well as supervising research projects.

Khademhosseini has developed a number of methods in the field of stem cells, and has published extensively in the area of biomedicine and stem cell bioengineering with over 350 peer-reviewed publications, more than 250 invited presentations and 20 issued or pending patents. As of October 2015, he has been cited more than 20,000 times.

His interdisciplinary research has been recognized with over 30 major national and international awards. He is one of the recipients of the 2011 Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE) presented by President Barack Obama.

Also a full professor at Harvard-MIT Division of Health Sciences and Technology and Associate Faculty at Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering, he received the BMW Scientific Award for his PhD work.

Various state-run and private research centers in Iran are active in the field of Reproductive Biomedicine and Stem Cells, each with unique achievements that will be centralized and put to use in the new central hub.

The leading scientific and research center on reproductive medicine and stem cells is Royan Institute, a public non-profitable organization which is affiliated to the Academic Center for Education, Culture and Research (ACECR).

Established in 1991 as a research institute for reproductive biomedicine and infertility treatment, it was approved by the Health Ministry as a cell-based research center in 1998. With one of the best clinics for infertility treatment, it has 46 scientific members and 186 lab technicians, consisting of three research institutes, each focused on different fields of research: stem cell biology and technology, reproductive biomedicine, and animal biotechnology.