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Highlighted below are the 2019 Featured Speakers, including keynote lecturers, named lecturers, and award winners, as well as invited speakers for our Plenary and Concurrent Sessions.

Featured Speakers


Shinya Yamanaka, MD, PhD, Center for iPS Cell Research & Application, Kyoto University, Japan and Gladstone Institutes, USA
Keynote Address

Andrew Plump photo

Andrew Plump, MD, PhD, Takeda Pharmaceutical Co., USA
John McNeish Memorial Lecture


Allan Spradling, PhD, Carnegie Institution for Science, USA
Anne McLaren Memorial Lecture


Lorenz Studer, MD, Sloan-Kettering Institute for Cancer Research, USA
Ernest McCulloch Memorial Lecture

Presidential Symposium


John Gurdon, FRS, University of Cambridge, United Kingdom
Keynote Address


Paola Arlotta, PhD, Harvard University, USA


Hans C. Clevers, MD, PhD, Hubrecht Institute, Netherlands

KoehlerK photo
Karl Koehler, PhD, Indiana University School of Medicine, USA




Award Lectures


Scott Armstrong, MD, PhD, Dana Farber/Boston Children's Cancer and Blood Disorders Center, Harvard Medical School, USA
ISSCR Tobias Award Lecture


John Dick, PhD, Princess Margaret Cancer Centre, University Health Network, and University of Toronto, Canada
ISSCR Award for Innovation


Barbara Treutlein, PhD, ETH Zurich, Department of Biosystems Science and Engineering, Switzerland
Dr. Susan Lim Award for Outstanding Young Investigator

Plenary Sessions and Speakers

Pluripotency and Germ Cells

  • Anna-Katerina Hadjantonakis, PhD, Sloan-Kettering Institute for Cancer Research, USA
  • Clodagh O'Shea, PhD, The Salk Institute, USA
  • Austin G. Smith, PhD, FRS, University of Cambridge, United Kingdom

Mechanisms and Applications of Mesodermal Tissues I

  • Golnaz Vahedi, PhD, University of Pennsylvania, USA
  • Hannah Mikkola, MD, PhD, University of California, Los Angeles, USA
  • Ryuichi Nishinakamura, MD, PhD, Kumamoto University, Japan
  • Irving L. Weissman, MD, Stanford University, USA

Stem Cells and Regeneration of Endodermal Organs

  • Sangeeta N. Bhatia, MD PhD, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, USA
  • Markus Grompe, MD, Oregon Health & Science University, USA
  • Nan Tang, PhD, National Institute of Biological Sciences, China
  • James M. Wells, PhD, Cincinnati Children's Hospital, USA

Mechanisms and Applications of Mesodermal Tissues II

  • Peter Carmeliet, MD, PhD, VIB-KU Leuven Center for Cancer Biology, Belgium
  • Denis Duboule, PhD, Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale, Switzerland
  • Charles Murry, MD, PhD, University of Washington, USA

From Bench to Bedside: Surface Ectoderm and Endocrine Organs

  • Ting Chen, PhD, National Institute of Biological Sciences, Beijing, China
  • Hiromitsu Nakauchi, MD, PhD, University of Tokyo, Japan
  • Anthony Oro, MD, PhD, Stanford University, USA
  • Felicia Pagliuca, PhD, Semma Therapeutics, USA

Basics and Translation: Neural Ectoderm

  • Kristin K. Baldwin, PhD, Scripps Research Institute, USA
  • Claude Desplan, PhD, New York University, USA
  • Sally Temple, PhD, Neural Stem Cell Institute, USA

Concurrent Sessions and Speakers

Developmental Principles for Stem Cells

  • Shaorong Gao, PhD, Tongji University, China
  • Olivier Pourquié, PhD, Harvard University/Brigham and Women's Hospital, USA

Engineering Tissues and Organs

  • Takanori Takebe, MD, Cincinnati Children's Hospital and Medical Center, USA and Tokyo Medical and Dental University, Japan
  • Valerie Weaver, PhD, University of California, San Francisco, USA

Epigenetic Regulation of Cell Identity

  • Wei Xie, PhD, Tsinghua University, China
  • Ibrahim Cissé, PhD, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, USA

Inflammation and Microbiome

  • Frederic Geissmann, MD, PhD, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, USA
  • Shruti Naik, PhD, New York University School of Medicine, USA

Lineage Choice and Asymmetric Cell Division

  • Haifan Lin, PhD, Yale University School of Medicine, USA
  • Yukiko Yamashita, PhD, University of Michigan, USA

Mechanisms of Pluripotency and iPS cell Reprogramming

  • Sally Lowell, MRC Centre for Regenerative Medicine, University of Edinburgh
  • Hitoshi Niwa, MD, PhD, Kumamoto University, Japan

Mechanisms of Transdifferentiation

  • Thomas Graf, PhD, Center for Genomic Regulation, Barcelona, Spain
  • Jongpil Kim, PhD, Dongguk University, Korea

Molecular and Cellular Dynamics

  • Sebastian Jessberger, MD, University of Zurich, Switzerland
  • Cristina Lo Celso, PhD, Imperial College London, United Kingdom

Non-mammalian Model Organisms for Stem Cell Biology

  • Jenna Galloway, PhD, Harvard Medical School & Massachusetts General Hospital, USA
  • Jessica Whited, PhD, Harvard University, USA

Organoid Models

  • Frederic de Sauvage, PhD, Genentech, Inc, USA
  • Emma Rawlins, PhD, Gurdon Institute, University of Cambridge, United Kingdom

Road to the Clinic

  • Koji Eto, MD, PhD, Center for IPS Cell Research and Application (CIRA), Kyoto University, Japan
  • Mark Humayun, MD, PhD, Keck School of Medicine of USC, USA

Stem Cell Aging

  • Salvador Aznar Benitah, PhD, Institute for Research in Biomedicine (IRB Barcelona), Spain
  • Pura Muñoz-Cánoves, PhD, Pompeu Fabra University, ICREA and CNIC, Spain

Stem Cell Ethics

  • Henry Greely, JD, Stanford Law School, USA
  • Marianne Hamilton Lopez, PhD, MPA, Duke University, USA
  • Douglas Sipp, BA, Riken Center for Developmental Biology, Japan

Stem Cell Heterogeneity

  • Kathrin Plath, PhD, David Geffen School of Medicine, UCLA, USA
  • Bennett Novitch, David Geffen School of Medicine, UCLA, USA

Stem Cell Metabolism

  • Joshua M. Brickman, PhD, University of Copenhagen, Denmark
  • Weiping Han, PhD, Singapore Bioimaging Consortium, Singapore

Stem Cell Niches

  • Paul S. Frenette, MD, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, USA
  • Kim B. Jensen, PhD, BRIC - Biotech Research & Innovation Centre, Denmark

Stem Cell-Based Disease Modeling

  • Sandra J. Engle, PhD, Biogen, USA
  • Arnold R. Kriegstein, MD, PhD, University of California San Francisco, USA

Stem Cells and Cancer

  • Eduard Batlle, PhD, Institute for Research in Biomedicine, IRB Barcelona, Spain
  • Dominique Bonnet, PhD, The Francis Crick Institute, United Kingdom

Tissue Regeneration and Homeostasis

  • Fabio Rossi, MD, PhD, University of British Columbia, Canada
  • Michal Shoshkes Carmel, PhD, Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Israel

Tools to Interrogate Stem Cells

  • Long Cai, PhD, California Institute of Technology, USA
  • Melike Lakadamyali, PhD, University of Pennsylvania, Perelman School of Medicine, USA