Stuart H. Orkin Receives the 2021 ISSCR Tobias Lecture Award
February 04, 2021
The International Society for Stem Cell Research (ISSCR) recently
awarded the 2021 Tobias Lecture Award to Stuart H. Orkin, MD, Boston Children's
Hospital, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, and Harvard Medical School. Established
in 2015 and supported by the Tobias Foundation, the prize recognizes original
and promising basic hematology research as well as direct translational or
clinical research related to cell therapy in hematological disorders. The award
will be presented at a special lecture on June 23 at 1:15 p.m. EDT (13:15 EDT)
during ISSCR 2021 Virtual, the world’s leading meeting of global innovators in
stem cell science and regenerative medicine.
“Stuart is one of the most accomplished and innovative
physician-scientists in the world engaged in hematopoiesis research. His
contributions to hematology and genetics are renowned and the ISSCR is thrilled
to recognize Dr. Orkin’s significant contributions to the field,” said
Christine Mummery, ISSCR President.
Dr. Orkin, an Investigator of the Howard Hughes Medical
Institute, is internationally recognized as a physician-scientist for his
groundbreaking discoveries in many aspects of hematopoiesis and particularly as
a pioneer in establishing the roles of transcription factors and genetic
networks in hematopoietic cell differentiation. Over the past decade, he has
used this knowledge to transform current understanding of erythroid
differentiation and how fetal hemoglobin is silenced in development and can be
experimentally reactivated via modulation of BCL11A function. This work forms
the basis for novel gene therapy and gene editing approaches to provide cures
for patients with the major hemoglobinopathies, sickle cell disease, and
“I am honored that the ISSCR has chosen to recognize my
group’s contributions with the 2021 Tobias Lecture Award and affirm the
critical role of basic research in translation of cell and genetic therapies to
patients,” Stuart H. Orkin said.
Award-winner biographies and photos are available upon
request, as are interviews with ISSCR President Christine Mummery.
About the International Society for Stem Cell Research
With nearly 4,000 members from more than 65 countries, the
International Society for Stem Cell Research is the preeminent global,
cross-disciplinary, science-based organization dedicated to stem cell research
and its translation to the clinic. The ISSCR mission is to promote excellence
in stem cell science and applications to human health. Additional information
about stem cell science is available at A Closer Look at Stem Cells, an
initiative of the Society to inform the public about stem cell research and its
potential to improve human health.