By Wendy Sarubbi | August 20, 2012 10:27 am

Dr. Dinender Singla, an associate professor at the Burnett School of Biomedical Sciences, can add “first-time textbook author” to his list of credits with the publication of “Stem Cell Biology Basic Concepts to Frontiers, Students Edition.”

“My goal was to create a textbook in simple language that undergraduates and graduates can understand,” said Dr. Singla, who is working with stem cells to determine if they can help a diseased heart heal itself. His research program has been supported by National Institutes of Health (NIH) grants.

Stem cell research is a hotbed of scientific inquiry. Scientists say one day stem cells could be used to replace or repair damaged cells or shape the treatment of conditions such as cancer, Alzheimer’s or paralysis.

Dr. Singla teaches the University of Central Florida’s only stem cell biology class, which is offered once a year. The spring 2013 class will be the first to use the textbook, currently available on

Thumbing through the textbook, Dr. Singla pointed out the illustrations and photographs – all in color to hold students’ attention. Dr. Singla used his own notes and also asked colleagues to contribute to the book, which describes a range of subjects from embryonic stem cells – which turn into any of the body’s mature cell types – to adult stem cells – which turn only into cells from their tissue of origin – to regenerative medicine.

“The potential for stem cell biology is wide open,” said Dr. Singla, who received the 2012 University Award for Excellence in Research. “Students will need to have knowledge of this.”

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