Regenerative medicine holds great potential bringing new knowledge and treatments to medicine. It will take efforts and resources to figure out the proper ways of using stem cells and revolutionizing our treatment of many debilitating diseases and injuries. Right now, we are still learning how to generate and grow stem cells, understand and control how stem cells differentiate to become specific cell types—heart, neuron, skin, liver, or whatever kind is needed.
Neurodegenerative diseases cause heavy burden both to family and society. Till now there is no effective prevention or disease-modifying therapy available. Elucidate neuronal dysfunction and molecular mechanisms of these neurodegenerative disorders should pave the way to the discovery of new drugs or effective treatment against the diseases. In our previous work, we uncovered that the GPCR/secretase complex regulates the specificity of secretase for Aβ production which suggests that intervention of either formation or trafficking of the GPCR/secretase complex could lead to a new strategy against AD potentially with fewer side effects. We found several active components in traditional medicines with clinically proved effects enhanced the NPC proliferation under physiological and pathological conditions in which growth factor supply was deficient. We further established transdifferentiation systems to generate human iPSCs, NPCs or neuronal cells from somatic cells by lineage-specific transcription factors or chemical cocktails. We systematically generated iPSC, iNPC and iN from about 100 patients suffered from AD, PD, depression, anxiety disorder and etc., providing human disease-modeling cells to explore the pathogenesis as well as novel therapeutic strategies thereof.