Nature SciCafe: Drug targeting of the stem cell niche

Apr 16 2014

SAN DIEGO EVENT Nature, in collaboration with Janssen Labs, invites you to the next SciCafe on April 16th in San Diego: "Drug targeting of the stem cell niche".

Program Overview:
Although the use of growth factors to direct in vivo modulation of hematopoietic stem cells is well established, the discovery of small molecules and biologics that target the stem cell niche remains an under exploited area of regenerative medicine. The San Diego SciCafe will explore the status of the field, the relative promise of different strategies to mobilize/differentiate adult stem cells, the challenges associated with accessing niches and potential safety issues, such as carcinogenicity.

Dr. Peter Schultz | CALIBR and Scripps Research Institute read bio»
Dr. Fred Gage | Salk Institute read bio»
Dr. Deepak Srivastava | Gladstone Institute read bio»

2:30pm - 3:00pm | Registration & Networking
3:00pm - 5:00pm | Presentations
5:00pm - 6:30pm | Networking Reception


Speakers' Biographies

Peter Schultz Dr. Peter Schultz | CALIBR and Scripps Research Institute
Peter G. Schultz did his undergraduate and graduate work at the California Institute of Technology. His thesis work with Peter Dervan resulted in the first synthetic molecules (polypyrrole amides) that sequence-selectively cleave DNA. In 1985, after postdoctoral studies at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology with Chris Walsh, he joined the faculty of the University of California at Berkeley, where he was Professor of Chemistry, Principal Investigator at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and an Investigator of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute. Schultz joined the faculty of Scripps in 1999 where he is currently the Scripps Family Professor of Chemistry. He founded and was the Institute Director of the Genomics Institute of the Novartis Research Foundation (GNF) in San Diego, CA from 1999 to 2010 and more recently (2012) the California Institute for Biomedical Research (CALIBR), a not-for-profit institute focused on early stage translational research. In addition, Schultz is a founder of Affymax Research Institute, Syrrx, Kalypsys, Phenomix, Symyx Therapeutics, Ilypsa, Ambrx, Ardelyx, and Wildcat Technologies, pioneers in the application of diversity based approaches to problems in chemistry, materials science and medicine. His awards include the Waterman Award of the National Science Foundation, membership in the National Academy of Sciences and National Institute of Medicine, the Wolf Prize in Chemistry, the Paul Ehrlich Prize, the Arthur C. Cope Award of the American Chemical Society, and the Solvay Prize. He has coauthored 500 scientific publications and trained over 300+ graduate students and postdoctoral fellows, many of whom are on the faculties of major research institutions around the world.

Fred Gage Dr. Fred Gage | Salk Institute
Fred H. Gage, a professor in the Laboratory of Genetics, concentrates on the adult central nervous system and unexpected plasticity and adaptability to environmental stimulation that remains throughout the life of all mammals. Gage's lab showed that, contrary to accepted dogma, human beings are capable of growing new nerve cells throughout life. Small populations of immature nerve cells are found in the adult Human brain, a process called Neurogenesis. Gage is working to understand how these cells can be induced to become mature functioning nerve cells in the adult brain and spinal cord. They showed that environmental enrichment and physical exercise can enhance the growth of new brain cells and they are studying the underlying cellular and molecular mechanisms of neurogenesis. In addition, the Gage lab focuses on modeling diseases in vitro using human stem cells. Through reprogramming of human somatic cells from patients with neurologic and psychiatric disease, his work seeks to understand the progression and mechanisms that lead to neuronal and glial dysfunction. Finally his lab studies the genomic mosaicism that exists in the brain as a result of mobile elements that are active during neurogenesis. Specifically, Dr. Gage is interested in differences between individuals and how somatic-induced genomic mosaicism may lead to functional diversity. Fred earned his B.Sc. from the University of Florida and M.S. & Ph.D. at The Johns Hopkins University.

Deepak Srivastava Dr. Deepak Srivastava | Gladstone Institute
Deepak Srivastava is the Younger Family Director and a Senior Investigator at the Gladstone Institute of Cardiovascular Disease and Director of the Roddenberry Stem Cell Center at Gladstone. At the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF), Dr. Srivastava is also a Professor in the Departments of Pediatrics, and Biochemistry & Biophysics, and is the Wilma and Adeline Pirag Distinguished Professor in Pediatric Developmental Cardiology. His laboratory revealed how cardiac chamber-specific gene networks are established at the transcriptional level and are integrated with signaling pathways. His laboratory used human genetics to demonstrate that a decrease in dosage of some of these cardiac developmental regulators can cause human cardiac septal defects and valve disease, and is now using induced pluripotent stem cells to discover the mechanisms of disease in these patients. In studying the regulation of gene dosage, his lab described the first known biological role of a microRNA in the mammalian system, ultimately revealing a network of microRNAs that titrate the dose of key cardiac gene networks that dictate cell fate and differentiation. Before joining Gladstone in 2005, Dr. Srivastava was a Professor in the Department of Pediatrics and Molecular Biology at the University of Texas Southwestern (UTSW) Medical Center in Dallas. He completed his undergraduate degree at Rice University, medical training at the University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston and his residency in the Department of Pediatrics at UCSF. He also did a fellowship in pediatric cardiology at the Children’s Hospital of Harvard Medical School and a postdoctoral fellowship at the M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, before joining the faculty at UTSW in 1996.