Orkin Received the 2021 ISSCR Tobias Lecture Award

Skokie, IL – The International Society for Stem Cell Research (ISSCR) awards the 2021 Tobias Lecture Award to Stuart H. Orkin, MD, Boston Children’s Hospital, Dana Farber Cancer Institute, and Harvard Medical School, USA. Established in 2015 and with support from the Tobias Foundation, the award is given to original and promising basic hematology research as well as direct translated or clinical research related to cellular therapy in blood disorders. The award will be presented in a special lecture on June 23 at 1:15 pm EST (13:15 EST) during the ISSCR 2021 Virtual, the leading global meeting of global innovators in stem cell science and regenerative medicine.

“Stewart is one of the most accomplished and innovative physicians and scientists in the world involved in hematopoiesis research. His contributions to hematology and genetics are well known and ISSCR is pleased to appreciate Dr. Orkin’s significant contributions in this field,” said Christine Momry, President of ISSCR.

Dr. Orkin, a researcher at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, is internationally recognized as a physician and scientist for his pioneering discoveries in many aspects of hematopoiesis, and in particular as a pioneer in defining the roles of transcription factors and gene networks in differential hematopoietic cells. Over the past decade, he has used this knowledge to transform the current understanding of erythrocyte differentiation and how fetal hemoglobin is silenced in development and can be re-activated experimentally by modulating BCL11A function. This work forms the basis for new gene therapy and gene-editing techniques to provide treatments for patients with major hemoglobinopathies, sickle cell disease and beta-thalassemia.

“I am honored that the International Council of Social Sciences (ISSCR) has chosen to recognize my group’s contributions through the 2021 Tobias Lecture Award and to emphasize the critical role of basic research in translating cellular and gene therapies for patients,” said Stuart Orkin.


Award-winning resumes and photos are available upon request, as are interviews with ISSCR President Christine Momry.

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 an eminent, multidisciplinary and science-based global organization dedicated to stem cell research and translation into the clinic. The mission of ISSCR is to promote excellence in stem cell science and its applications to human health. Additional information on stem cell science is available at Closer Look at Stem Cells, an initiative by the association to inform the public about stem cell research and its potential to improve human health.

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