The ISCT 2019 Early Stage Professional Abstract Award is given to individuals within 10 years of receiving their terminal degrees or entry into the cell and gene therapy field, who provide top-scoring abstracts. Akron is proud to present one of these three ESP awards to David Bishop, BMedSc(Hons), MBBS, FRACP FRCPA, Westmead Hospital (Australia). Bishop’s abstract, titled Matched Sibling Donor-Derived Piggybac CAR19 T Cells Induce Remission Of Relapsed/Refractory CD19+ Malignancy Following Haematopoietic Stem Cell Transplant, will be celebrated on May 30, 2019 at Plenary Satellite 1a during the Annual Meeting of the International Society for Cell and Gene Therapy (ISCT), which will be held in Melbourne, Australia.
“It’s an honor to receive this award from ISCT,” Bishop says. “It highlights the important contribution this research is making to the evolving field of CAR T-cell therapy. It provides encouragement to work even harder towards its progression.”
“As a haematologist, it’s terrible when your patients with malignancy run out of treatment options,” he adds. “As I was finishing my specialist training, the first reports of the clinical success of CAR T-cells were published. I was very excited by both the concept of engineering T-cells to enable them to combat cancer and also the potential clinical impact this approach could have. It was also clear that these therapies would be complicated and expensive to produce, limiting their global availability. I became interested in transposon systems as simple and economical alternatives to the lenti- and retroviral vectors commonly used to generate CAR T-cells, that might improve CAR T-cell access.”
Akron is also proud to present the ISCT 2019 Top Scoring Abstract Award, for an abstract submitted by an ISCT member, Yohei Sato, MD, PhD, Stanford University (United States). Dr. Sato’s abstract is titled Immunoregulatory cell therapy with lentiviral-mediated FOXP3 converted CD4+ T cells into Treg cells: towards the proof-of-concept application in IPEX syndrome. His award will be presented on June 1, 2019 at Plenary Satellite 5a.
Receiving the Top Scoring Abstract Award “is a great honor for me,” Sato said. “I was so surprised, but so delighted to hear the news. Lots of people around us celebrated and shared warm comments.”
As a physician-scientist, Sato’s clinical career has always been focused on translational medicine for patients with rare genetic diseases. “Currently, I am especially interested in immune regulatory cell therapy for genetic immune disease,” he says. Sato hopes this research will also serve to benefit a number of other immune-mediated disease. The ISCT award is a step towards realizing this.
“This is one of the milestones in our research,” he says. “In terms of clinical translation, our project is still in the development stage. The award gave all the team members strong encouragement. It motivated me as a scientist.”
He adds, “My ultimate goal as a physician-scientist is to discover a treatment for rare genetic diseases. Research is one of the most important tools for this discovery, and I would like to make my contribution.”
For Bishop, it’s about creating access. “I want to develop effective and affordable cell therapy cancer treatments that can provide cures for more patients.”
Congratulations to the winners! We look forward to celebrating their important contributions to the field.