Public Release:  Christof von Kalle, M.D., Ph.D. receives Pioneer Award

For contributions to efficient vector integration in Human Gene Therapy

Mary Ann Liebert, Inc./Genetic Engineering News

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IMAGE: Human Gene Therapy, consisting of Human Gene Therapy, HGT Methods, and HGT Clinical Development, provides 22 issues in print and online. For more information visit www.liebertpub.com/hgt.... view more

Credit: ©2014, Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers

New Rochelle, NY, July 1, 2014--Christof von Kalle, MD, PhD (National Center for Cancer Research, Heidelberg, Germany) began his medical and research career with a focus on oncology and virology. He subsequently devoted much of his efforts to studying the use of viral vectors to deliver therapeutic genes into host cells and understanding the mechanisms of insertional mutagenesis. In recognition of his leadership and accomplishments, Dr. von Kalle has received a Pioneer Award from Human Gene Therapy, a peer-reviewed journal from Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers. Human Gene Therapy is commemorating its 25th anniversary by bestowing this honor on the leading 12 Pioneers in the field of cell and gene therapy selected by a blue ribbon panel* and publishing a Pioneer Perspective by each of the award recipients. The Perspective by Dr. von Kalle is available on the Human Gene Therapy website.

In "Vector Integration and Tumorigenesis," Dr. von Kalle recalls his early experiences working with retroviral vectors and the growing body of knowledge that was developing about their ability to cause mutations at the sites where they integrated into the host cell genome. He discusses the teamwork, intensive research, and technology advances that led to a growing understanding of the link between vector insertion, mutation, and malignant transformation of cells. Tracing the progress of the field forward to the present and looking to the future, Dr. von Kalle comments on the revolutionary impact that next generation sequencing technologies, molecular tools and techniques, and omics studies are having on gene therapy.

"The level of sophistication that Dr. von Kalle has brought to the analysis of vector integration is truly remarkable," says James M. Wilson, MD, PhD, Editor-in-Chief of Human Gene Therapy, and Director of the Gene Therapy Program, Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine, Philadelphia. "This has established a solid scientific foundation to a critically important performance feature of retro- and lenti-based vectors."

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*The blue ribbon panel of leaders in cell and gene therapy, led by Chair Mary Collins, PhD, MRC Centre for Medical Molecular Virology, University College London selected the Pioneer Award recipients. The Award Selection Committee selected scientists that had devoted much of their careers to cell and gene therapy research and had made a seminal contribution to the field--defined as a basic science or clinical advance that greatly influenced progress in translational research.

About the Journal

Human Gene Therapy, the Official Journal of the European Society of Gene and Cell Therapy, British Society for Gene and Cell Therapy, French Society of Cell and Gene Therapy, German Society of Gene Therapy, and five other gene therapy societies, is an authoritative peer-reviewed journal published monthly in print and online. Human Gene Therapy presents reports on the transfer and expression of genes in mammals, including humans. Related topics include improvements in vector development, delivery systems, and animal models, particularly in the areas of cancer, heart disease, viral disease, genetic disease, and neurological disease, as well as ethical, legal, and regulatory issues related to the gene transfer in humans. Its sister journals, Human Gene Therapy Methods, published bimonthly, focuses on the application of gene therapy to product testing and development, and Human Gene Therapy Clinical Development, published quarterly, features data relevant to the regulatory review and commercial development of cell and gene therapy products. Tables of content for all three publications and a free sample issue may be viewed on the Human Gene Therapy website.

About the Publisher

Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers is a privately held, fully integrated media company known for establishing authoritative peer-reviewed journals in many promising areas of science and biomedical research, including Nucleic Acid Therapeutics, Tissue Engineering, Stem Cells and Development, and Cellular Reprogramming. Its biotechnology trade magazine, Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News (GEN), was the first in its field and is today the industry's most widely read publication worldwide. A complete list of the firm's 80 journals, books, and newsmagazines is available on the Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers website http://www.liebertpub.com

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