2016 Election for ISSCR Board of Directors 

Cast your ballot for the 2016 ISSCR Board of Directors. 

Elections are now open through 3 March

ISSCR full and trainee members are invited to vote. This is your opportunity to make a difference. Help shape the future of your Society by voting in the 2016 ISSCR Board of Directors election.

Have you renewed your membership? Not a member? Join now.

The ISSCR Board of Directors consists of 24 members, and includes the president, president elect, vice president, past president, clerk and treasurer. Nominations for the Board of Directors were made by ISSCR members in October/November 2015. Candidates have been slated with an emphasis on scientific authority and to keep the overall international diversity of the board. The current ISSCR leadership began their terms following the ISSCR Annual Meeting in June 2015.

In the 2016 election, 4 February - 3 March, 2016, current full and trainee members are invited to vote for: 

  1. Vice president
  2. Treasurer
  3. Two new members to the ISSCR Board of Directors

New officers will begin their terms following the ISSCR 2016 Annual Meeting, 22-25 June in San Francisco, California USA. For more information, contact Glori Rosenson at grosenson@isscr.org.

1. Candidates for Vice President

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Lawrence S.B. Goldstein, PhD

Lawrence Goldstein is Distinguished Professor in the Department of Cellular and Molecular Medicine and the Department of Neurosciences at the University of California, San Diego (UCSD), School of Medicine, as well as Director of the UC San Diego Stem Cell Program, Scientific Director of the Sanford Consortium for Regenerative Medicine, and Director of the Sanford Stem Cell Clinical Center.

Important Issues on the Horizon for ISSCR

ISSCR has a key role and mission in supporting stem cell science and stimulating clinical translation to benefit patients suffering from disease. To achieve these goals, ISSCR must: 1) maintain its financial health; 2) facilitate outstanding scientific and clinical translation meetings; 3) be a thoughtful high-impact international voice in stem cell research and translation policy; 4) enhance support and integration of young scientists into ISSCR meetings and other activities. My priorities as president would be to continue successful efforts with international scientific and clinical meetings, to amplify the impact of ISSCR international ethics and policy initiatives, to better integrate ethics and policy initiatives into ongoing meetings and international outreach activities, and to increase involvement of young scientists in ISSCR activities.

Biography

Dr. Goldstein received his B.A. degree in Biology and Genetics from UCSD in 1976 and his Ph.D. in Genetics from the University of Washington, Seattle in 1980. Dr. Goldstein did postdoctoral research at the University of Colorado at Boulder from 1980 to 1983 and at MIT from 1983 to 1984. He was assistant, associate, and full professor at Harvard University in the Department of Cellular and Developmental Biology from 1984 to 1993. Dr. Goldstein moved to UCSD as Professor of Pharmacology from 1993-2000, Investigator with the Howard Hughes Medical Institute from 1993-2012, Professor and then Distinguished Professor of Cellular and Molecular Medicine from 1999-present, and Neurosciences from 2011-present. He has served as Director of the UCSD Stem Cell Program since 2006, Scientific Director of the Sanford Consortium for Regenerative Medicine since 2012, and Director of the Sanford Stem Cell Clinical Center beginning in 2013. His awards include a Senior Scholar Award from the Ellison Medical Foundation, an American Cancer Society Faculty Research Award, appointment as The Loeb Chair in Natural Sciences at Harvard University, election to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and the 2009 Public Service Award from the American Society for Cell Biology.

Funding from the NIH, the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM), and Department of Defense (DOD), supports Dr. Goldstein’s work.  His research is focused on using stem cells models to understand the molecular mechanisms of movement inside brain cells and how failures in the movement systems may lead to neurodegenerative diseases. His laboratory has discovered important links between transport and trafficking processes and diseases such as Alzheimer and Huntington diseases. He is now focused on using human stem cells to understand and treat Alzheimer Disease, Niemann-Pick Type C, and ALS.

Dr. Goldstein has an active role in national science policy, serving on many public scientific advisory committees, in addition to serving as an expert commentator on the issue of stem cell research and biomedical research policy in print and broadcast media. He has testified on a number of occasions in the U.S. House of Representatives and the Senate about NIH funding and stem cell research. Dr. Goldstein also served as co-chair of the scientific advisory committee to the campaign for the Proposition 71 stem cell research initiative, which authorizes $3 billion in tax-free state bonds to fund stem cell research in California over 10 years.  As a co-founder and consultant of the biotechnology company Cytokinetics, he has an active role in private industry where he has gained experience in translating scientific insights to new therapeutic approaches. Dr. Goldstein is a past member of the ISSCR Board of Directors, first-chaired the initial Ethics and Public Policy Committee, chaired the 2012 Annual Meeting Program Committee, co-chaired the Legislative Educational Initiative and is a continuing member of the Ethics and Public Policy committees. Public understanding will be considerably improved with his recent well-received book, "Stem Cells for Dummies".

Douglas Melton, PhD

Douglas Melton is the Xander University Professor at Harvard and a HHMI Investigator. He is a member of Harvard’s Department of Stem Cell and Regenerative Biology and a Co-Director of Harvard's Stem Cell Institute.

Important Issues on the Horizon for ISSCR

I am honored to have been asked to stand for the position of ISSCR Vice President. The field of stem cell science has moved very quickly from discoveries on the production and characterization of stem cells to a more practical or applied focus on their use. Employing stem cells and their differentiated products for new therapeutic approaches is the unifying challenge before the ISSCR community.   While the cell types vary for each disease, there are shared challenges in making specialized cells and finding ways to transplant cells that will survive and function. The ISSCR is a special organization, one with the capacity to change the course of human health through a sound, intelligent and ethical pursuit of these challenges. 

Biography

Dr. Melton teaches several undergraduate courses and with his wife, Gail O’Keefe, serves as a Co-Master of Eliot House in Harvard College.

Dr. Melton earned a bachelor's degree in biology from the University of Illinois and then went to Cambridge University, U.K., as a Marshall Scholar. He earned a B.A. in history and philosophy of science at Cambridge and remained there for a Ph.D. in molecular biology at Trinity College and the MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology.  Dr. Melton has served on the Scientific Advisory Boards of pharmaceutical and biotech companies and is a scientific Co-Founder of Gilead Sciences, Curis, and Semma Therapeutics.  Dr. Melton has received numerous awards for his scientific work and has twice been named to TIME magazine’s list of the year’s 100 Most Influential People. Dr. Melton is a founding member of the ISSCR Board of Directors and past Treasurer.

Research in the Melton laboratory focuses on finding a significant new treatment for Type 1 diabetes.  His laboratory analyzes the normal development of pancreas, and the autoimmune attack that leads to Type1 diabetes, in order to understand how pancreatic beta cells are made and how they become the target of autoimmunity.  The main focus of the lab is to use human stem cells to make pancreatic islet cells for transplantation into diabetics.

2. Candidates for Treasurer

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Arnold Krigstein, MD, PhD

Arnold Kriegstein is the John Bowes Distinguished Professor in Stem Cell and Tissue Biology and Founding Director of the Eli and Edythe Broad Center of Regeneration Medicine and Stem Cell Research at University of California San Francisco. 

Biography

Dr. Kriegstein received a BS from Yale University (1971), and MD and PhD from New York University (1977) with Dr. Eric Kandel as thesis advisor.  He completed Neurology Residency at the Brigham and Women’s, Children’s, and Beth Israel Hospitals, Boston, and is a board-certified clinical neurologist.  He has held academic appointments at Stanford, Yale, and Columbia before joining UCSF in 2004.  In 2001 he was named the John and Elizabeth Harris Professor of Neurology and became the founding Director of the Neural Stem Cell Program at Columbia University.  As the Founding Director of the Eli and Edythe Broad Center of Regeneration Medicine and Stem Cell Research at UCSF, Dr. Kriegstein oversees one of the largest and most comprehensive stem cell programs in the US, encompassing over 70 laboratories focused on disorders ranging from heart disease and diabetes to cancer and diseases of the nervous system. 

Dr. Kriegstein’s research focuses on the stem cell niche and ways neural stem and progenitor cells produce neurons in the developing brain.  He was one of the first to find that radial glia (RG), long thought to simply guide neuron migration, are the primary neural stem cell population in the embryonic brain.  He also described a second type of precursor cell, an intermediate progenitor, produced by RG that contributes to the generation of neuronal diversity.  Recently he described oRG cells, a neural stem cell type in the human outer subventricular zone that accounts for the bulk of human cortical neurogenesis.  Lineage analysis links this cell type to transit amplifying daughter cells and helps explain evolutionary cortical expansion.  Currently he is analyzing gene expression profiles of single cells to link human precursor cell diversity with the generation of specific adult cortical neuron subtypes.  In addition, together with colleagues at UCSF, he has developed methods to derive human inhibitory cortical interneurons from pluripotent stem cells, a finding that may provide cell-based therapy for disorders including epilepsy and neuropathic pain.

Dr. Kriegstein serves on the editorial boards of Cell Stem Cell, Stem Cell Reports, Developmental Neuroscience, and Journal of Experimental Neurology and is currently Chair of the Publication Committee of the ISSCR.  He has been an external reviewer for RIKEN, ANR, Welcome Trust, and MRC, and reviewer and Chair of the NIH Stem Cell Study Section.  He has served as SAB member for Pfizer and advisory board member for the John Merck Scholars Program, the Allen Brain Institute, and the Stanley Center of the Broad Institute.  He is a member of the National Academy of Medicine and was twice awarded a Javits Neuroscience Investigator Award from the NINDS.  Among other honors, he was the Dodge lecturer (Washington University), the Hunt-Wilson Lecturer (American Association of Neurological Surgeons), the Lippard Lecturer (Columbia University), the Cotzius lecturer (American Academy of Neurology), and received the Solomon A. Berson Medical Alumni Achievement Award (NYU).  He was selected Senior Visiting Professor by the Chinese Academy of Sciences (2012), and Astor Visiting Professor, University of Oxford (2013).

Richard A. Young, PhD

Richard Young is Professor of Biology at the Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research, Massachusetts Institute of Technology. 

Biography

Dr. Young received his PhD from Yale University in 1975, and became a Whitehead Institute Member in 1984. Scientific American recognized him as one of the top 50 leaders in science, technology, and business in 2006 and his awards include a Burroughs Wellcome Scholarship, the Chiron Corporation Biotechnology Research Award, and Yale’s Wilbur Cross Medal. Young has served as an advisor to Science magazine, the National Institutes of Health, and the World Health Organization. He was elected to the National Academy of Sciences in 2012. 

Dr. Young developed technology to map human genome regulatory circuitry and described a core regulatory circuity of hESCs. His laboratory continues to explore the regulatory circuitry that controls cell state and differentiation in mice and humans.  They use experimental and computational technologies to determine how signaling pathways, transcription factors, chromatin regulators and small RNAs control gene expression programs in embryonic stem cells and differentiated cells. 

Dr. Young served on the 2010 Annual Meeting Program Committee and as co-organizer of the ISSCR’s regional forum series beginning in 2011. He is currently Co-Chair of the International Affairs Committee.

3. Candidates for the Board of Directors

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Marianne Bronner, PhD

Marianne Bronner is the Albert Billings Ruddock Professor and Executive Officer for Neurobiology, Division of Biology and Biological Engineering at the California Institute of Technology.

Biography

Marianne Bronner is a developmental biologist and Professor at Caltech, where her lab studies gene regulatory interactions underlying formation, migration and differentiation of neural crest stem cells.

Born in Budapest, Hungary, Marianne’s family escaped to Austria during the Hungarian revolution when she was a small child.  She was raised in Lawrenceville, N.J, and attended Brown University, where she received her ScB in Biophysics and then a PhD in Biophysics from Johns Hopkins University. She assumed her first faculty position at the University of California, Irvine, where she moved up the ranks from Assistant to Full Professor.  In 1996, she joined the faculty at Caltech and became the first woman to be Chair of the Faculty in 2001 to 2003. 

Bronner’s early work pioneered the use of a single cell lineage labeling approach for analyzing the developmental potential of neural crest cells in vivo to show that premigratory and migrating neural crest cells are multipotent.  Her group went on to define several of the signals underlying neural crest induction (e.g. Wnt) and segmental migration (e.g. neuropilin/Sema and Eph/ephrin).  More recently, her lab has used systems level transcriptional profiling, phylogenomic analysis and in vivo functional perturbation experiments to reveal direct connections in the gene regulatory network responsible for neural crest formation and evolutionary origin.

Dr. Bronner was President of the Society for Developmental Biology in 2009 and is currently the Editor-in-Chief of its official journal, Developmental Biology. She also serves as a monitoring editor for eLife, Journal of Cell Biology and Molecular Biology of the Cell.  She was President of the Society for Differentiation in 2014 and has served on numerous boards and committees (e.g. Gordon Research Conference, Sontag Foundation, Curci Foundation, NIDCR Board of Scientific Counselors). In 2015, she was elected to the National Academy of Sciences and in 2009 to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.  She received the Conklin Medal from The Society for Developmental Biology in 2013, the Women in Cell Biology Senior Award from the American Society for Cell Biology in 2012, and a Javits award from the NINDS in 2002, as well as several teaching awards from her institution.

Valentina Greco, PhD

Valentina Greco is an Associate Professor in the Genetics, Cell Biology and Dermatology Departments, and a member of the Yale Stem Cell Center and Yale Cancer Center at the Medical School of Yale University (2009-present).

Biography

Dr. Greco was born in Palermo, Italy and earned her undergraduate degree in Molecular Biology at the University of Palermo, Italy. She earned her PhD with Suzanne Eaton at the EMBL/MPI-CBG, Germany (1998-2002) and her post-doc with Elaine Fuchs at the Rockefeller University (2003-2009).

The Greco Lab focuses on trying to understand how stem cells and their environment contribute to organ regeneration, and how dysregulation of growth signals leads to cancer. The Greco Lab was the first to establish the ability to visualize and manipulate stem cells and their environment in an intact mammalusing two-photon microscopy and laser ablation. By visualizing stem cells in vivo and identifying signaling pathways that regulate normal skin and skin cancer growth, her lab has made groundbreaking contributions to our understanding of organ growth and cancer regulation. Their work has provided unprecedented insights into tissue regeneration, which relies upon the coordinated activation of resident stem cells and their environment, and into key signaling pathways controlling dynamic stem cell behaviors and decisions.

Dr. Greco was the recipient of the 2014 ISSCR-BD Biosciences Outstanding Young Investigator Award and is co-chair of the ISSCR Junior Investigators Committee. She is also the recipient of the 2014 Women in Cell Biology Junior Award (WICB) for Excellence in Research from the American Society of Cell Biology (ASCB) and the 2015 Robertson Stem Cell Investigator Award from the New York Stem Cell Foundation (NYSCF).

Jürgen Knoblich, PhD

Jürgen Knoblich is senior scientist and deputy director of the IMBA-Institute of Molecular Biotechnology in Vienna, Austria since 2005.

Biography

Jürgen Knoblich’s laboratory is interested in the biology of neural stem cells. In the fruitfly, they have identified the molecular mechanism that allows neural stem cells to segregate protein determinants into only one daughter cell during mitosis and to divide asymmetrically. They have demonstrated that defects in this mechanism lead to brain tumor formation. More recently, they have extended their interest to analyzing mammalian neural progenitors and their contribution to brain development. To analyze those processes in humans, they have established a 3D culture system that recapitulates the early steps of human brain development in cell culture allowing brain pathologies and human specific developmental events to be studied in unprecedented detail. In particular, they have used this system for modelling microcephaly thereby demonstrating for the first time that human neurodevelopmental disorders can be studied in 3D culture. 

Jürgen Knoblich started his scientific career as a graduate student at the Max Planck Institute in Tuebingen where he worked on cell cycle control in Drosophila under the guidance of Christian Lehner. In 1994 he moved to San Francisco to join the laboratory of Yuh Nung and Lily Jan where he discovered his interest in asymmetric cell division, a topic that has remained the main focus of his research ever since. In 1997, Jürgen Knoblich returned to Europe to become a group leader at the Institute of Molecular Pathology (I.M.P.) in Vienna, Austria. In 2004, he moved next door to the newly founded Institute of Molecular Biotechnology of the Austrian Academy of Sciences (IMBA).

Jürgen Knoblich has received several awards such as the Wittgenstein prize, the Schroedinger award, the FEBS anniversary award and the Hans Krebs medal. He is a member of the  European Molecular Biology Organisation (EMBO) and the Austrian Academy of Sciences and acts on the EMBO council and the editorial boards of Current Biology, Current Opinion in Cell Biology and the Journal of Cell Biology. 

Duanqing Pei, PhD

Duanqing Pei is Professor of stem cell biology and also serves as the Director General (President) at the Guangzhou Institutes of Biomedicine and Health (GIBH), Chinese Academy of Sciences, in Guangzhou, China.

Biography

Dr. Pei obtained his PhD from the University of Pennsylvania in 1991 and then trained as a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Michigan before becoming a tenure-track assistant professor and tenured associate professor at the University of Minnesota School of Medicine in 1996 and 2001 respectively. He joined the Medical Faculty at Tsinghua University in Beijing China in 2002 and moved to the newly formed GIBH in 2004. 

Dr. Pei studied the transcription regulation of hepatitis B virus (HBV) for his Ph.D. thesis and worked on ECM remodeling by matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) as a postdoc and faculty member in the US. Upon return to China, he started to focus on stem cells by working on pluripotency first and then reprogramming.  The Pei lab in Tsinghua began to publish in the stem cell field on the structure and function of Oct4, Sox2, FoxD3, Essrb, and Nanog, and their interdependent relationship in regulating pluripotency. At GIBH, the Pei lab was the first in China to create mouse iPSCs using a non-selective system, and then improved the iPS process systematically.  The Pei lab subsequently disseminated the iPS technology in China by providing not only resources, but also training workshops.  Recent publications from the Pei lab includes the discovery of vitamin C as a potent booster for iPSC generation and the histone demethylases Jhdm1a/1b are key effectors of somatic cell reprogramming downstream of vitamin C, as well as a mesenchymal to epithelial transition initiates the reprogramming process of mouse fibroblasts. Now, his lab continues to explore new ways to improve iPS technology, dissect the reprogramming mechanisms driven by Oct4/Sox2/Klf4 or fewer factors, and employ iPSCs to model human diseases in vitro.  Most recently, he published a paper on the role of cJun in blocking reprogramming and identification of a new 6 factor (6F) combination that can reprogram MEFs into iPSCs based on the inhibition of cJun activities. 

Dr. Pei currently co-chairs the national stem cell program of China, serves on the advisory board for Natural Science Foundation of China Medical Branch, the strategic planning committee of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, and the ISSCR award and public policy committees; served on the 2014 ISSCR annual program committee and recently the planning committee for the International Summit on Human Gene Editing organized by the US National Academies of Science and Medicine, Royal Society of London and Chinese Academy of Sciences and now continues to be a member of its study group. He co-founded the Gordon Research Conference on “Genome Architecture in Cell fate and Diseases”.
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