Could drugs promoting angiogenesis be used as a treatment for burn victims?

Could drugs promoting angiogenesis be used as a treatment for burn victims?

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From what I've learned from my textbooks and in class lecutures it seems that inducing angiogenesis for people with severe burns would be an excellent way to speed up the healing process. Is this already being done? If so or if not what are (if any) challenges that are presented to doctors and surgeons trying to use this self-healing method?

Adipose tissue angiogenesis as a therapeutic target for obesity and metabolic diseases

Current pharmacotherapeutic options for treating obesity and related metabolic disorders remain limited and ineffective. Emerging evidence shows that modulators of angiogenesis affect the expansion and metabolism of fat mass by regulating the growth and remodelling of the adipose tissue vasculature. Pharmacological manipulation of adipose tissue neovascularization by angiogenic stimulators and inhibitors might therefore offer a novel therapeutic option for the treatment of obesity and related metabolic disorders. This Perspective discusses recent progress in understanding the molecular mechanisms that control adipose tissue angiogenesis and in defining potential new vascular targets and approaches for the treatment of this group of diseases.

Key Points

Angiogenesis and inflammation are host-dependent hallmarks of cancer that can be targeted using prevention approaches long before tumours initiate and progress

Several prescription and non-prescription drugs are already available for use in angioprevention, as well as a growing array of nutraceuticals

We propose four levels of angioprevention: I for the 'healthy' population II for patients with increased risk of cancer III for preneoplastic lesions and IV for prevention of cancer recurrence

There are several successes in cancer prevention that demonstrate clinical feasibility and levels of intervention, from no to little to intense physician involvement

To avoid toxicity while maintaining efficacy, angioprevention needs to achieve a degree of angiogenesis control that is not excessively suppressive, such that healthy vascular function is maintained

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Having originally trained in medicine at Trinity College Oxford, where he gained a first class degree, Professor Stebbing completed junior doctor posts in Oxford, and then undertook training and a residency programme in Internal Medicine at the John Hopkins Hospital, Baltimore, returning to London to continue his career in oncology at The Royal Marsden and then St. Bartholomew’s Hospitals. Professor Stebbing’s original PhD research investigated the interplay between the immune system and cancer he was appointed a senior lecturer in 2007, and a Professor in 2009.

Professor Stebbing has published over 600 peer-reviewed papers, as well as writing regularly for national newspapers and presenting new data on optimal cancer therapies at major international conferences. His focus is on new therapies in cancer, and the systemic management of patients with solid malignancies including a number of new biomarker-based approaches, with an emphasis on circulating tumor cells and cell free DNA. His laboratory work is concentrated on these areas including new druggable target discovery and gene regulation examining the role of non-coding RNAs in stem cells. The charity Action Against Cancer has been set up to support Justin’s work which concentrates on drug development and has the ambitious goal of developing cures.

Professor Stebbing is a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians, the American Board of Internal Medicine and the Royal College of Pathologists, and sits on the Advisory Boards of a number of international cancer committees. He chaired the World Vaccine Congress and currently Chairs the Irish Cancer Society oversight committee he was awarded the Silvia Lawler prize in 2015. Justin’s team published in Nature Medicine the discovery of a new cancer-causing gene which has now been implicated in breast, gastrointestinal, lung, and other solid tumors, and a drug development programme around this is underway. The National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) awarded Justin Stebbing its first translational research professorship in oncology, aiming to bridge the gap between the laboratory and the patient to ensure therapy is personalized. The focus of this is understanding why some patients with cancer relapse, and developing a program to reverse this and prevent it. Recently, Professor Stebbing was elected to the American Society for Clinical Investigation.

Health Psychologist, California Pacific Medical Center

Dr. Sarah Dihmes has her Ph.D. in clinical health psychology. She currently offers several types of biofeedback to patients, families, parents, and caregivers from diverse cultural backgrounds. Dr. Dihmes helps clients become aware of the stress responses in their body and mind, and teaches them skills to combat the negative effects of stress through self-regulation. Dr. Dihmes specializes in the prevention and management of psychophysiological manifestations of stress, pain, and illness. Her interventions include cardiorespiratory, electromyography (EMG), thermal, electroencephalography (EEG), galvanic skin response (GSR), and heart rate variability biofeedback.

She has been biofeedback certified for 7 years, and was the Secretary, and youngest board member, of the Mid-Atlantic Society of Biofeedback and Behavioral Medicine. She ran the biofeedback program at the Center for Youth Wellness in San Francisco, combating negative effects of trauma through a variety of evidence-supported protocols. Dr. Dihmes was the Assistant Research Coordinator for the Johns Hopkins Bayview Breast Cancer Center. Dr. Dihmes has worked in academic hospitals, community clinics, and non- profit organizations from coast to coast in the U.S.

Dr. Dihmes completed her post-doctoral fellowship in the Health Psychology program at California Pacifica Medical Center (CPMC) in the Neurogastroenterology Department, as well as the Bryan Hemming Cancer Center, Radiation Oncology, and Cardiac Rehabilitation. She received her Ph.D. from Alliant University in San Diego, and came to San Francisco after completing her research on Male Caregiving at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, and pre-doctoral training at the University of Maryland Medical School and Veterans Administration, Sharp Memorial Rehabilitation Center in San Diego, Robert Wood Johnson, and UCSD.

She has over 20 publications in the field of behavioral medicine and hopes to continue in a career helping patients with medical illness and their families gain tools to buffer the effects stress and cope with negative life circumstances.

As a teacher, supervisor, researcher and clinician in health psychology, she brings expertise of being a member of a multidisciplinary team and delivers treatment to patients suffering from a diverse range of disorders including the following: depression, anxiety, trauma, sleep disorders, disorders of self-regulation, stress-induced illness, headaches, gastroenterological disorders, rheumatic diseases, cancer, and chronic pain.

She has taught classes to college and graduate students, hospital staffs, and chronic pain patients at several universities and hospitals on the Pacific and Atlantic coasts. Dr. Dihmes research in psychoneuroimmunology has been published in several scientific journals. She believes that the client is the expert on their life and offers her knowledge to help individuals and their families gain tools to buffer the effects stress and cope with negative life circumstances.

Jeffrey Tarrant has more than three decades of experience picking emerging talent. Prior to founding MOV37 and Protégé Partners, Jeffrey managed institutional size alternative investments for private family fortunes and was a member of the board of the Investment Fund for Foundations. Jeffrey is known for investing in and seeding emerging managers, many of whom have become renowned names in the industry. During this time, Jeffrey also created Altvest (now a division of Morning Star), the hedge fund industry’s first Internet-based commercial database and analytics systems. Jeffrey
was founder and director of ARK, (Absolute Return for Kids), a U.K. based charity with a mission to transform the lives of children. He is currently a director of WITNESS, a global human rights organization, and he is on the advisory board of The Angiogenesis Foundation. Jeffrey’s philanthropic efforts include active support for many award-winning social issue documentary films. Jeffrey Tarrant is a graduate of Harvard Business School and University of California at Davis.

Andrea Hunt was most recently VP, New Products Lead for Gene Therapy, Neuroscience, Oncology and Ophthalmology for Shire through June 2017. Ms. Hunt has more than 25 years of life sciences, medical device and biotech experience. She served as the Global Blood Disorders Franchise Head, for Baxalta US Inc. with commercial responsibility for Baxalta’s Hemophilia gene therapy programs, Von Willebrand, Sickle Cell and hTTP programs. Previous to this she held multiple positions in Baxter International including leading the most important development program BAX855 (now Adynovate) for commercialization. She also led the commercial development of new regenerative medicine efforts which focused on cell and tissue therapies in the cardiac, orthopedic and vascular areas. Other corporate positions in Baxter included the spearheading and execution of innovation efforts which led to the creation of a global innovation council, corporate incubator group and implementation of innovation processes globally to drive growth for the corporation. She created and led Baxter’s Shared Values program that included global initiatives around customer and employee engagement.

Before joining Baxter, she worked for H.J. Heinz in business development and prior to that for Technomic Consultants a specialist in the foodservice industry. Andrea holds bachelor’s degrees in Hospital Dietetics and Foods and Nutrition from the University of Illinois, and a master of business administration degree from the University of Michigan. She is currently on the Alliance for Regenerative Medicine Board and has previously served on both the University of Illinois Medical School advisory board and Make-A-Wish Foundation National Board.

Director, Laboratory of Molecular Medicine, Centre de cancérologie Charles Bruneau, Sainte-Justine Hospital

Dr. Richard Beliveau is Director of the Laboratory of Molecular Medicine at Service de Neurochirurgie, Hopital, Notre-Dame (CHUM), and an expert on tumor angiogenesis. In his position, Dr. Beliveau oversees a number of important angiogenesis-based research projects involving the regulation of VEGF-dependent signaling pathways, contribution of bone marrow-derived cells in tumor angiogenesis, and the identification of new molecular targets and biomarkers, among others.

A particular area of interest and expertise of Dr. Beliveau is in the discovery and application of natural antiangiogenic and antitumor substances found in the diet for cancer prevention and treatment. This burgeoning area of research includes natural angiogenesis inhibitors found in green tea, cruciferous vegetables, soy, berries, and curcumin. Dr. Beliveau is the author of the best sellers “Foods That Fight Cancer” and “Cooking with Foods That Fight Cancer”. He won the Grand Prize at the Montreal Book Fair and was named personality of the year 2006 by L’Actualité magazine and Personality of Québec by the Au Québec Magazine, in 2007.

In addition to serving as Director of the Laboratory of Molecular Medicine, Dr. Beliveau is a researcher in the Neurosurgery Department of Notre-Dame Hospital and the hemato-oncology unit of Sainte-Justine Hospital and holds several prestigious academic positions, including: Chaire de Neurochirurgie Claude-Bertrand, full professor of biochemistry at Université du Québec à Montréal, professor of surgery and physiology on the medicine faculty of Université de Montréal, and Chaire en Prévention et Traitement du Cancer.

Dr. Beliveau is also a member of the Group for Experimental Therapy of Cancer of the Jewish General Hospital. He has authored more than 220 papers in peer-reviewed medical journals.

Associate Director, Scientific Engagement, Horizon.

Molecular and cellular biologist with expertise in cancer research and tumor angiogenesis. Dr. Almog received a Ph.D. from the Weizmann Institute of Science, Israel, where she was studying the molecular mechanisms regulating the activity of the tumor suppressor protein p53. Dr. Almog did her post-doctoral training in the laboratory of Dr. Judah Folkman, at the Children’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Boston. Under Folkman’s guidance, she generated and characterized in-vivo models of human tumor dormancy. She continued to develop these models and to investigate the molecular and cellular mechanisms underlying human tumor dormancy as an instructor in Folkman’s lab and later as an Assistant Professor at the Center of Cancer Systems Biology at Tufts University School of Medicine, Boston.

Dr. Almog served as an Associate Program Officer, Oncology, at the Adelson Medical Foundation, where she managed global and multi-institutional translational research programs. In addition to her expertise in tumor biology and a broad network of connections with leading scientists and clinicians in cancer research and clinical oncology, Dr. Almog has extensive hands-on experience with a variety of techniques ranging from the molecular level (DNA, RNA and proteins) to tissue, organ and mouse models in cancer biology, as well as extensive experience in project management and program coordination. Dr. Almog is the author of numerous scientific publications in high impact journals as well as oral and poster presentations at international conferences.

Scientific Director of Fondazione MultiMedica Onlus, Milan
Adriana Albini, PhD, is an internationally celebrated researcher and serves as the scientific director of the Fondazione MultiMedica Onlus in Milan, Italy. With over 300 scientific publications in peer-reviewed journals and an H index of 78, Dr. Albini is one of the most consulted scientists in the world.

Dr. Albini has spent most of her scientific and academic career in experimental and translational oncology. Her main fields of interest are angiogenesis, anti-angiogeneic gene therapy, chemoprevention, immunopathogenesis, invasion and metastasis, nanoparticles, nanotoxicology, the tumour microenvironment, and vascular biology.

She has contributed to a variety of medical breakthroughs, including elucidating the main mechanisms of metastatic disease and angiogenesis, identifying novel functional domains and sequences of the HIV-tat protein, and originating the concept of “angioprevention,” amongst other unique contributions to the field of disease prevention. She developed new synthetic molecules and flavonoid derivatives for cancer prevention, and invented the most widely used in vitro invasion assay, a publication with over 1,900 citations.

Dr. Albini’s extensive honors include the 2015 Special Recognition Award by the European Union Women Inventors and Innovators Network International (EUWIIN), as well as the 2014 Donne Che Ce L’hanno Fatta (Women Who Made It) award by the Provincial Council of Brescia. As a champion for women in the field of science, Dr. Albini has fostered the careers of other female investigators, contributed to WICR activities, and published for the Veronesi Foundation.

A true polymath, Dr. Albini has also won the silver medal at the 2015 European Veteran Fencing championship, and has written and published six mystery novels under a pen name.

In addition to his positive mental attitude, he has spent the past 14 years researching cancer treatments and now incorporates natural anti-angiogenesis, ketogenesis, fasting and the use of phycocyanin, found in spirulina, into his daily regime.

Today, Jean-Jacques devotes his spare time to helping other cancer sufferers and spreading the word about his revolutionary approach to the disease. He was the initiator of Rethinking Cancer 2017, a ground-breaking conference held in Paris at Institut Gustave Roussy, the leading cancer centre in Europe.

William W. Li is Chief Executive Officer, President, Medical Director, and Co-founder of the Angiogenesis Foundation. Will trained in the lab of Dr. Judah Folkman, pioneer of the angiogenesis field, and has been actively engaged in angiogenesis research and clinical development for 30 years. Under Will’s leadership, the Foundation has developed a unique social enterprise model based on value creating collaborations with leading medical academic centers, biopharmaceutical and medical device companies, and government agencies, including the National Institutes of Health, Food and Drug Administration, and Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

As President, Will has testified and presented before congressional and other government panels on the impact of angiogenesis in healthcare, and lectures around the world on angiogenesis-related topics in front of clinical, government, and industrial audiences. He is actively engaged in global efforts to advance the applications of angiogenesis-based therapeutics across diverse medical fields, including oncology/hematology, cardiology, ophthalmology, vascular surgery, dermatology, wound care, and regenerative medicine. He has been published in Science, The New England Journal of Medicine, The Lancet, Nature Reviews and other leading peer-reviewed medical journals. Will’s TED talk on angiogenesis has received more than 11 million views.

Will received his A.B. with honors from Harvard College, and his M.D. from the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, Pennsylvania. He completed his internship, residency, and fellowship training in General Internal Medicine at the Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston. Will has held appointments on the clinical faculties of Harvard Medical School, Tufts University School of Veterinary Medicine, and Dartmouth Medical School. He serves as advisor and consultant to leading global public and private companies.

Sir Roger Moore (1927-2017) was a special advisor and friend to the Angiogenesis Foundation, starring in an advocacy video and working to raise awareness for disease-related vision loss.

Sir Roger’s professional accomplishments were extraordinary and well-documented. He will forever hold an enduring place in the history of cinema, through his portrayal of James Bond from 1973-1985, the longest serving actor in the role of Special Agent 007. Sir Roger made his Bond debut in 1973 in Live and Let Die and continued for a total of seven productions. Trained at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art and Cambridge Arts Theatre, he began his acting career on stage in London’s West End and then on Broadway. He subsequently headed to Hollywood where he worked at MGM and Warner Bros. Studio. Notable roles include his work in the television series Ivanhoe, The Alaskans, and Maverick. His breakout role was as Simon Templar in the most successful television series of its time, The Saint. Then followed his widely popular portrayal of Lord Brett Sinclair in The Persuaders, with Tony Curtis as his co-star. Sir Roger also wrote a handful of books, among them My Word is My Bond: A Memoir, Bond on Bond and Last Man Standing.

Sir Roger was an internationally celebrated humanitarian. For over 25 years, he worked with UNICEF, appointed as Special Ambassador in 1991 and as Goodwill Ambassador in 1999, to advocate for the rights of children. Queen Elizabeth II recognized Sir Roger’s charitable contributions in 1999 by appointing him a Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) and, again in 2003, when she made him a Knight Commander of the Order of the British Empire (KBE). Sir Roger was dedicated to using his influence to spur positive change in the world and was also an ardent activist for cancer research and animal rights.

Nicole Stott is a retired NASA astronaut. Over the course of her 27-year career with NASA, she flew two spaceflight missions and spent 104 days living and working in space on both the Space Shuttle and the International Space Station (ISS). Stott’s many accomplishments include performing a seven-hour spacewalk and being the first person to guide the space station’s Canadarm2 robotic arm for the first track and capture of a visiting cargo vehicle. Stott was the last crew member to fly to and from their ISS mission on a Space Shuttle and she was a member of the crew of the final flight of the Space Shuttle Discovery, STS-133. Stott is also a NASA Aquanaut and holds the Women’s World Record for saturation diving following her 18-day mission with the NEEMO9 crew on the Aquarius undersea habitat. She is now a full-time artist and SciArt education advocate who believes that sharing the perspective she was blessed to experience through spaceflight has the power to increase our appreciation of and obligation to care for our home planet and each other.

As Acting Chief Strategy Officer of the Angiogenesis Foundation, Eric Lowitt works with the executive team to ignite paradigm-shifting innovations in health promotion and disease prevention to improve health outcomes for people around the world. Over the course of his career, Eric has advised Fortune 500 CEOs, senior public officials, and leaders of nongovernmental organizations in health, strategy, collaboration, and sustainability. He has worked for nearly two decades with Accenture, Fidelity Investments, and Deloitte Consulting.

The author of two ground-breaking books on sustainability and business, Eric has also published more than 70 articles in leading journals and publications including the Harvard Business Review, Forbes, The Guardian, The Wall Street Journal,, and The Christian Science Monitor. Eric received his Masters of Business Administration from The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania in Strategic Management. He is fluent in Japanese, a baseball historian, and car enthusiast.

Diana Saville is the Chief Innovation Officer of the Angiogenesis Foundation.

Diana develops innovative strategies for advancing health initiatives surrounding the prevention of non-communicable diseases, such as cancer, vision loss, and chronic wounds. She works with leaders in the healthcare and pharmaceutical industry, NGOs, patient advocacy, and medical associations to align interests and create high impact collaborations supporting the Angiogenesis Foundation’s mission. She has served as a delegate at the Clinton Global Initiative, at Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute programs, and at strategic advocacy summits across Europe and North America.

Diana is an expert in communicating complex scientific concepts related to science, medicine, and industry. Her creative work has been featured in the Nobel Museum in Stockholm, the Museum of Modern Art in New York, and at TEDMED, and her visual media has received the Award of Excellence from the American Association of Medical Illustrators. She has played a creative role in successful initiatives at the American Museum of Natural History, Harvard University, Harvard Medical School, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, New York University, the U.S. Air Force, and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratories.

Diana received her undergraduate degree with honors in Biochemical Sciences from Harvard College, and began working with Pixar animators to illustrate molecular phenomena while pursuing a Ph.D. in Molecular and Cellular Biology at the University of California, Berkeley.

Dr. Akila Viswanathan is Professor of Oncology, Radiation Oncology, and Molecular Radiation Services, and Executive Vice Chair, and Director of Gynecological Radiation Oncology services for Johns Hopkins, and Director of Radiation Oncology services in the Washington D.C. national capital.

As an expert on gynecologic cancers and their treatment, Dr. Viswanathan has published more than 130 articles and chapters, with her primary clinical and research interests focused on gynecologic malignancies, uterine cancers and image-guided brachytherapy.

Dr. Viswanathan trained at Harvard College, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, and Harvard School of Public Health. She also holds leadership positions in the American Brachytherapy Society and the American Society for Radiation Oncology, and serves on the committees of the Gynecologic Cancer Intergroup and the Gynecologic Cancer Steering Committee for the National Cancer Institute. She is on the editorial board of Gynecologic Oncology and Brachytherapy, and is an editor of the text Gynecologic Radiation Therapy: Novel Approaches to Image-Guidance and Management.

Jairam Vanamala, Ph.D., is an Associate Professor and Director of The Food for Gut Health Laboratory in the Department of Food Science at Penn State, in University Park, PA. He is also on the faculty of Center for Molecular Immunology and Infectious Diseases and The Penn State Hershey Cancer Institute. Dr. Vanamala is an expert food processing effects on anti-inflammatory/anti-cancer properties of foods.

As a recognized leader in the field of functional foods, he received several research projects funded by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) to study the health benefits of whole foods, particularly after processing. He has also authored numerous peer-reviewed articles on the topics of phytonutrient extraction, analysis and chemoprevention/protection.

Dr. Vanamala received his doctorate from Texas A&M University and completed his post-doctorate fellowship in cancer prevention/nutritional biochemistry at the National Space Biomedical Research Institute (NSBRI NASA), Texas A&M. Dr. Vanamala says, “the long-term goal of my research is to optimize the health profiles of food products and provide modern evidence for ancient wisdom on diet and disease.”

George W. Thorn was an electric figure in medicine. At the age of 36 he burst on the scene at Harvard Medical School in 1942 as the ninth Hersey Professor of the Theory and Practice of Physic and the third Physician in Chief of the Department of Medicine at the then Peter Bent Brigham Hospital. Frequently mistaken for a medical student or resident, he remained youthful in outlook and appearance until his 90s. He died on 26 June 2004 at the age of 98.

George made vital contributions to the clinical use of adrenal steroids. He began his career in endocrinology as a medical student at the University of Buffalo, went on to Ohio State and then joined the faculty at Johns Hopkins where Harvard found him.

The Brigham, as it was called, was then a Dickensian institution as were all of the Harvard hospitals of the mid 20th century. Built in 1914, its design was inspired by a fear of hospital borne infection. The four 30 bed male and female surgical and medical services were wide open, poorly ventilated and over-heated pavilions separated from each other by a long corridor that was still partially open to the elements well into the 1950s. Flimsy curtains separated the ancient beds. Privacy was non-existent. So called semi private beds were on a floor above.

They were located on open wards as well, but those patients were the private patients of staff members, while the large first-floor pavilions were the provinces of the house staff. A three floor private service was housed near the pillared entrance of the hospital. It was scarcely lucullan in its appointments, but there the tired interns could make a decent breakfast for themselves on Sunday mornings.

Laboratories at the old Brigham were primitive by any standards. One small old building housed the hematology, chemistry and pathology labs as well as George’s endocrinology lab and a few beds where patients with endocrine disorders could collect urine and undergo various hormone tests. It was an early form of the later General Clinical Research Centers based on the Rockefeller University Hospital model. A horribly ventilated and totally inadequate animal facility was in the basement.

Despite lack of space and money, George conjured up a full time staff of investigators. His own program in endocrinology produced George Cahill and Albert Renold among many others. His many contributions to the endocrinology literature included over 400 papers.

To expand the academic department of medicine he focused first on cardiology. He was wise enough to build on the clinical greatness of Samuel A. Levine and added the cardiac catheterization skills of Lewis Dexter and, later, Dick Gorlin. Frank Gardner came from the Thorndike laboratory at the Boston City Hospital to run hematology. He attracted house staff of the quality of Don Thomas and Clem Finch and scores of others who became leaders of academic medicine. George’s greatest gift was free floating imagination. His discussions of patients on rounds were always brilliant if occasionally somewhat off base. A favorite resident told me “You listen—I will not. Then when he is gone—we’ll do it my way.”

Armed with that creative style, Thorn dissuaded John Merrill from a career in cardiology to lead an effort in renal dialysis and transplant. The renal transplant program at the Brigham became world-renowned. He was instrumental in the formation of the Harvard-MIT program in Health Science and Technology, and he was the first scientific leader of the Howard Hughes Medical Research Institute. But his free flowing thought processes and his youthful, friendly personality were sometimes confusing. One inadequate resident once boasted that George had appointed him to the Chief Residency when actually George had fired him!

In his later years as the Chief of Medicine, George began to worry about how to elevate the role of basic science in a department of medicine and how to prevent specialists from forgetting general medicine. He wrote two very important articles on those subjects in the New England Journal of Medicine. Whether one agrees with them or not, they are well worth reading today.

George’s last appointment was: Physician in Chief, Emeritus, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Hersey Professor of the Theory and Practice of Physic, Emeritus & Samuel A. Levine Professor of Medicine, Emeritus, Harvard Medical School.

Dimitris Tsakayannis, M.D., Ph.D. is a founder of the Angiogenesis Foundation, and has served on its Board of Directors. Dr. Tsakayannis has conducted research on angiogenesis in cancer with Dr. Judah Folkman and has made significant contributions in advancing the field angiogenesis-based therapies in wound healing. Dr. Tsakayannis is a specialist in the open and laparoscopic surgical treatment or intraabdominal malignancies, and practices in Athens, Greece.

He is a nationally recognized expert in the management of diseases of the thyroid gland, the parathyroids and the adrenals, and was Chief Resident Associate in Surgery at the University of Massachusetts, Boston. He has completed research and clinical Fellowships in Surgery at Harvard Medical School and was a surgical resident at both Harvard Medical School and Tufts University Medical School. Dr. Tsakayannis is a member of numerous professional societies, including the American College of Surgeons, American Medical Association, Society of American Gastrointestinal Endoscopic Surgeons (SAGES), and the Athens Medical Association.

He received his M.D. summa cum laude and Ph.D. from the University of Athens Medical School. He is a pioneer of the NOTES procedure for removal of the appendix.

MA, MB, BA Mod.(Biochem.), FRCPCH, FRCPI, FFpathRCPI, FRCPEdin, FRCPLon, FRCP Glasg, FRCPath, Hon FTCD Professor of Haematology, The University of Dublin, Trinity College Dublin, Ireland Consultant Paediatric Haematologist, Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital, Crumlin, Dublin 12

Professor Smith is a Consultant Paediatric Haematologist at Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital Dublin, and is Professor of Haematology at the University of Dublin, Trinity College Dublin. His active research areas of interest include: childhood and adolescent leukaemias & lymphomas, bone marrow failure syndromes, angiogenesis and haematological malignancies, the molecular and cellular basis of the inflammatory – coagulation interface in human disease.

The co-author of more than 300 research original articles, letters, books, book chapters and papers, Professor Smith is a Fellow of the Royal College of Pathologists, the Royal College of Physicians of Dublin, London, Glasgow, Edinburgh and the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health. He is a member of numerous associations and societies, including the Medical Research Council Childhood Leukaemia Working Party, the International Berlin Frankfurt Munster Study Group for Childhood Leukaemia, the United Kingdom Haemophilia Centre Directors Organisation, the European Paediatric Network for Haemophilia Management, the United Kingdom Children’s Cancer Group, the Paediatric Haematology Forum of the British Society of Haematology, and the European Paediatric Network for Severe Congenital Neutropenia.

He was awarded the Graves Medal by the Royal Academy of Medicine and Health Research Board in 2001 for his research into the pathobiology and novel therapeutic strategies in severe sepsis that had received international acclaim. In 2006, Professor Smith was awarded the St Luke’s Medal by the Royal Academy of Medicine and St Luke’s Hospital for his work on improving outcomes in adolescent cancers with specific reference to the haematological malignancies. He was admitted to Honorary Fellowship of Trinity College Dublin (the oldest and most valued tradition of the University) in 2009.

Pankaj Shah is an investor and advisor to dozens of venture capital firms and startups. He is an early backer of Addepar, ALOHA, AltVR, OpenGov, VentureBeat, and many other companies. Pankaj’s advisory roles include ArmorText, Booshaka, Inside Vault, Parklet, ONEHOPE and Systems in Motion.

His current philanthropic focus is with the Angiogenesis Foundation, Bayes Impact and the ONEHOPE Foundation, and random acts of kindness. Pankaj is also an advocate for Every Mother Counts, Virgin Unite and Witness. Previously, he proudly served on the Board of Directors for BRAC USA and Girls, Inc and supported Music Rising. BRAC USA aims to end extreme poverty in Africa and Asia through innovative, entrepreneurial development programs. BRAC is the largest non-profit social enterprise in the developing world and focuses on microfinance, health, education, and social justice. Girls, Inc., is a national non-profit youth organization dedicated to inspiring all girls to be strong, smart and bold.

Pankaj has been a guest speaker at a number of top schools, including Columbia University, Harvard University, New York University, Stanford University, Tufts University and the University of California Haas Graduate School of Business. In his occasional spare time, he loves to listen to music, play sports, travel and hang out with his kids in Palo Alto.

Dr. Thomas E. Serena M.D. FACS FACHM FAPWCA, Founder and Medical Director of The Serena Group™, a family of wound, hyperbaric and research companies, is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of The College of William and Mary and Penn State Medical School.

He completed his residency in Surgery at The Milton S. Hershey Medical Center with fellowship training in Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery at Southern Illinois University.

To date he has opened and operates wound care centers from New York City to Tulsa Oklahoma. Dr. Serena has been the lead or Principal investigator in over 55 clinical trials, including testing blood platelets, gene therapy for critical limb ischemia, antimicrobial dressings, growth factors, topical and parenteral antibiotics and bi-layered cell therapy. As a result of the overwhelming demand for his services as a researcher, he founded the NewBridge Medical Research Corporation, a non-profit corporation (501(c)3) dedicated to advancing the science of wound healing. On four occasions NewBridge has received funded from the National Institutes of Health. He currently consults for the government of Rwanda on AIDS prevention research.

He is recognized internationally as an expert in the field of wound healing: He has 100 published papers and has given more than 200 invited lectures throughout the world. He consults for numerous wound care industrial partners in the development of new products for the wound care space. He has been a member of the Board of Directors of the Wound Healing Society and recently was an author on four of the national guidelines for the treatment of chronic wounds.

In 2009 he was elected Vice-President of the American College of Hyperbaric Medicine. He also currently serves on the board for the Association for the Advancement of Wound Care. Recently, Dr. Serena returned from Haiti where he was the wound care team leader for the University of Miami’s Medishare Hospital. He has done extensive medical relief work with Health Volunteers Overseas and serves as chairman of the

AAWC Global Volunteers/HVO Steering Committee. He also a member of the World Health Organization’s wound care outreach program (WAWLC).

Jeffrey F. Rayport is a consultant, author, and founder and chairman of Marketspace LLC, a strategic advisory practice that works with leading companies to reinvent how they interact with and relate to customers. Marketspace was formerly a unit Monitor Deloitte, a global strategy services and merchant banking firm.

Rayport is an authority on information-intensive industries such as media and entertainment, retail, and financial services. He has published a series of MBA-level textbooks on e-Commerce and a bestselling business book on integrating multi-channel customer experiences.[1] In 1996, his Fast Company article “The Virus of Marketing” introduced the concept of, and coined the term “viral marketing.”

He is on the faculty of the Harvard Business School in the Entrepreneurial Management Unit. He has been voted outstanding professor multiple years. At HBS, Rayport developed and taught the first graduate-level e-commerce course in the United States, “Managing Marketspace Businesses” in 1995. Business plans produced by Rayport’s students resulted in various high-tech start-ups, including Yahoo!

Rayport earned an A.B. from Harvard College, an M.Phil. in International Relations at the University of Cambridge (U.K.), and an A.M. and Ph.D. in the History of American Civilization at Harvard University.

He has served as a director of several public and private corporations current directorships include Andrews McMeel Universal, GSI Commerce (NASDAQ:GSIC), International Data Group, Valueclick (NASDAQ:VCLK) and Monster Worldwide. He also serves on the advisory boards of advertising agency Crispin Porter + Bogusky and public relations firm Brodeur (a unit of Omnicom Group NYSE: OMC). In addition, he is a trustee of the Peabody Essex Museum in Salem, MA a director of the Nantucket Preservation Trust inNantucket, MA and a director of From the Top (a classical music program distributed in the United States by National Public Radio) in Boston, MA.

Associate Professor, Universita degli Studi dell’Insubria, Varese, Italy

Douglas Noonan, Ph.D. is Associate Professor, Universita degli Studi dell’Insubria, Varese, Italy. Dr. Noonan has held prestigious research and fellowship positions at institutions in both Italy and the U.S. and has published numerous peer-reviewed articles on the mechanisms of tumor angiogenesis and angioprevention. Dr. Noonan was a postdoctoral fellow in the Lab of Developmental Biology and Anomalies, NIDR, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD, and received his Ph.D. in Cell Biology from Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland.

He is a member of the Societa’ Italiana di Cancerologia, the Societa’ Italiana di Patalogia, the Societa’ Italiana di Immunologia Clinica e Allergologia, and the American Association for Cancer Research.

Dr. Michael McNamara leads a unique specialty of preventive health practice using the most sophisticated modalities of diagnostic imaging and blood analysis. A pioneer in the specialty of Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI), he founded the first hospital-based MRI department in Europe in 1986 at the Princess Grace Hospital in Monaco. He has led groundbreaking work in diagnostic MRI and CT imaging for cardiac disease and cancer, for pharmaceutical development and clinical testing, for sports related injuries, as well as in IT solutions for mining raw medical data for improvement of healthcare management.

Dr. McNamara received his M.D. at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, Michigan, and trained in Medicine and General Surgery at Mercy Hospital and Medical Center in San Diego, California, followed by specialty residency training in diagnostic radiology at University of California San Francisco (UCSF). He also completed fellowships in cardiovascular disease imaging and pharmaceutical MRI development, and in the development of pharmaceutical MRI contrast media for early cancer diagnosis.

In 1986, Dr. McNamara was recruited to be MRI department chairman at the Princess Grace Hospital, McNamara developed the world’s first preventive Total Body Scanning program, for the early detection of cardiovascular and autoimmune diseases, cancer, and degenerative abnormalities, as well as implementation of regenerative medical treatment programs. Prince Rainier III bestowed Monaco citizenship to Dr. McNamara in 2001, in recognition of his significant achievements and contributions to the Principality of Monaco.

The US Olympic Committee appointed Dr. McNamara as consultant physician for the United States Men’s Basketball “Dream Team” for the 1992 Barcelona Olympic Games. Dr. McNamara has lectured throughout the world and has published over 45 scientific papers and books. Dr. McNamara is currently the medical director of BIOPTRON A.G. and Zepter International, overseeing research and development for the clinical use of medical light therapy. He has also served on the Medical Advisory Boards of General Electric Medical Systems, Bristol-Meyers Squibb, Nycomed Laboratories, and Bracco Diagnostics, and sits on the Board of Directors of Akloma Biosciences in Stockholm, Sweden. Dr. McNamara also co-founded MDdatacor, an innovative health care information technology company.

Professor of Pharmacology
University of Patras, Greece

Professor Michael Maragoudakis has 13 years of experience in drug development with CIBA- GEIGY in USA. He earned his Ph.D. from the University of Oregon State University in 1964. Since 1979 he has been Professor & Chairman of Pharmacology at the University of Patras Medicine School, and Visiting Professor at the Albert Einstein Medicine School and Tufts University (USA) He has served as a member of various committees at the drug regulatory agency (EOF) and President of EOF of the National Drug Industry. He has over 100 publications in peer review journal and has edited 10 books.

Jack N. Losso graduated from Washington State University Pullman, WA with a Ph.D. in Food Science in 1990. From 1991 to 1992, he worked as a postdoctoral research associate in the department of Food Science at the University of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC, Canada. From 1993 to 1998 he became a research associate in the same department of Food Science at the University of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC, Canada.

From 1998 to 1999, he worked as a research scientist in the bioproduct division at Canadian Innovatech, Abbotsford, British Columbia, Canada. He joined the department of Food Science at Louisiana State University Agricultural Center in 1999 as an assistant professor. In 2005, he was promoted to the rank of associate professor. He teaches Food Analysis and Food Protein Biotechnology. His current research interests include (i) the molecular mechanisms by which biologically active compounds in foods, also known as functional foods, angiogenic diseases including macular degeneration, chronic inflammation, and cancer and (ii) the development of functional food products for healthy living.

Dr. Losso has published more than 80 peer reviewed papers, book chapters, proceedings, and journal magazine articles. He is actively involved in the Nutraceuticals and Functional Foods Division of the Institute of Food Technologists where he has served as secretary, newsletter publisher, chair-elect, scientific program subcommittee chair, annual meeting session organizer, and division chair.

He is also actively in the agricultural division of the American Chemical Society. He is an active professional member of the Institute of Food Technologists, the American Chemical Society, the American Association of Cereal Chemists, and the American Oil Chemists’ Society.

Director, Feinberg Cardiovascular Research Institute and Program in Cardiovascular Regenerative Medicine, Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine

Dr. Douglas W. Losordo is an interventional cardiologist specializing in the field of therapeutic angiogenesis for the treatment of cardiovascular-related diseases. He is Director of the Feinberg Cardiovascular Research Institute and Program in Cardiovascular Regenerative Medicine at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine. Dr. Losordo is internationally recognized for his groundbreaking work in the use of gene, protein, and cell therapies to promote new blood vessel growth in patients with peripheral artery disease (PAD) and critical limb ischemia (CLI).

In the 1980s, Dr. Losordo was a Research/Interventional Cardiology Fellow at St. Elizabeth’s Hospital, Boston, where he worked with Dr. Jeffrey Isner, a physician who pioneered clinical applications of angiogenesis for PAD and ischemic heart disease. He has served as Principal Investigator on numerous clinical studies of therapeutic angiogenesis, with a particular emphasis on using gene therapy to stimulate angiogenic growth factor production in patients with PAD and CLI.

Dr. Losordo received his M.D. from the University of Vermont and completed his internship and residency at St. Elizabeth’s Hospital, Boston. He has served on the editorial boards of a number of prestigious peer reviewed publications and has lectured widely on the potential applications of therapeutic angiogenesis in cardiovascular disease. In addition to his medical degrees, Dr. Losordo holds a B.A. from the University of Vermont.

Founder and President of the Rare Genomics Institute Chief Scientific Officer, Oncology at Natera Inc.

Cheng-Ho Jimmy Lin, MD, PhD, MHS, a pioneer in cancer genomics, served as the Director of Clinical Genomics at the Genetics Branch of the National Institute of Health/National Cancer Institute (NIH/NCI). At Johns Hopkins University and Washington University in St. Louis, Dr. Lin was part of one of the first clinical genomics laboratories to lead the computational analyses of the first ever genome sequencing studies (including breast, colorectal, glioblastoma, medulloblastoma, melanoma, and pancreatic). He has published in top academic journals, including Science, Nature, and Cell, and is a consultant to national and international media outlets. Dr. Lin holds an MHS in bioinformatics, a PhD in cellular and molecular medicine, an MD from Johns Hopkins University, and majored in cognitive science, molecular biophysics, and biochemistry at Yale University. He is a 2012 TED Fellow and a 2016 Senior TED Fellow. Currently, he is the Chief Scientific Officer of Oncology at Natera and the Founder and President of the Rare Genomics Institute.

David Larson, M.D., a native of San Diego, studied Business at Brown University and trained in medicine at UCSD, where he graduated with the highest distinction, the Alpha Omega Alpha merit scholarship. He spent a year in Pamplona, Spain on a Fulbright Fellowship and then went on to live in rural India, serving in the Public Health sector. Dr. Larson specializes in Family Medicine, Psychiatry, and Integrative Medicine.

Professor of Anatomy, Institute of Anatomy, Johannes Gutenberg University, Mainz, Germany

Dr. Moritz A. Konerding is Professor of Anatomy at the Institute of Anatomy at Johannes Gutenberg University, Mainz, Germany. One of the early pioneers of angiogenesis research, Dr. Konerding leads a group focusing on angiogenesis in inflammation, wound healing, and tumor growth, as well as on clinical anatomy. He is an expert on microvascular anatomy and patterns of angiogenesis and the effects of antiangiogenic agents in blood vessels in different organ and tissue systems. Dr. Konerding received his M.D. from the University of Essen, where he did his post-doctoral work in human anatomy.

Instructor in Pediatric Oncology, Dana Farber Cancer Institute, Harvard Medical School, Boston

Dr. Giannoula Klement, an internationally recognized expert on tumor angiogenesis and antiangiogenic therapy, worked with Judah Folkman elucidating the role of platelets in angiogenesis and their possible role as biomarkers in the early detection of cancer and tumor recurrence. Because the majority of angiogenesis regulatory factors appear to be sequestered in platelets, which possess the ability to selectively accumulate these factors in patients with cancer, they have the potential to detect tumor growth before it is clinically apparent.

Dr. Klement trained with another angiogenesis pioneer, Dr. Robert Kerbel, and with him co-authored a number of papers on antiangiogenic therapy for cancer and the mechanisms of tumor escape from these agents. Dr. Klement received her M.D. from McMaster University, Canada, and did her residency at the Hospital for Sick Children at the University of Toronto, Canada. She is the author of numerous papers and textbook chapters on tumor angiogenesis, and was the recipient of the Tisdall Award for Excellence in Research, General Pediatric Section in 1994, and the National Cancer Institute of Canada Terry Fox Postgraduate Research Fellowship from 1997-2000.

Dr. Kamen received his M.D. and Ph.D. from Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, OH, and served his residency and fellowship in pediatrics and pediatric hematology/oncology and pharmacology at Yale University, New Haven, CT. His academic career consists of three years in Wisconsin, 16 years at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center as a Professor of Pediatrics and Pharmacology as the Carl B and Florence E. King Distinguished Professor Pediatrics and then 8 years as Director of Pediatric Hematology-Oncology and Associate Director of the Cancer Institute of New Jersey at the Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, New Brunswick, NJ. He then served as the Chief Medical Officer of the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society from 2007-2009.

During his career, Dr. Kamen has been a recipient of a Scholar Award from The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, a Damon Runyon Walter Winchell Fellowship, Burroughs Wellcome Clinical Pharmacology Award and is one of only a few American Cancer Society Clinical Research Professors. He was also elected into the American Society of Clinical Investigation (Young Turk). He has authored approximately 300 manuscripts (papers and chapters) and is the current Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Pediatric Hematology Oncology as well as serving on a number of editorial boards and advisory boards of other cancer journals. He serves on the Research and Medical Affairs Committee of the American Cancer Society and is on the board and the treasurer of the National Coalition for Cancer Research (NCCR).

Dr. Kamen’s clinical and research interests are driven by the over arching goal of doing “translational research,’ that is taking the best science to the bedside. Currently he is developing treatment to prevent both resistance and toxicity, especially neurotoxicity from therapy. He has been on the forefront of developing metronomic therapy for cancer.

Nobel Laureate in Physiology or Medicine 1963

Nobel Prize Winner in Medicine. A physiologist, he was honoured in 1963 for elucidating the chemical and mathematical processes involved in nerve impulse conduction. Born to a family distinguished in both the literary and scientific worlds (his older half brothers included biologist Sir Julian Huxley and “Brave New World” author Aldous Huxley), he was exposed to advanced learning from early childhood and was educated at the University College School and at Westminster before earning a scholarship to Trinity College Cambridge where he studied biology, physics, and physiology.

Upon graduation he partnered with Sir Alan Hodgkin in a series of experiments which involved passing a wire down the long axis of a large neuron taken from a giant Atlantic squid and measuring electrical voltages along the nerve membrane. The two men published their observations in a small article in the journal “Nature” but soon found their work interrupted by the outbreak of World War II. During the conflict Sir Andrew performed anti-aircraft and naval gunnery research then in 1946 resumed his neurophysiology studies. Though it was long known that potassium ions (K+) could pass thru a neural membrane it was felt that sodium ions (Na+) could not Sir Alan and Sir Andrew were able to demonstrate that during the excitation or rising phase of a nerve impulse Na+ ions diffuse into a cell while in the falling phase K+ ions pass out and were to propose the Hodgkin-Huxley Model, a series of differential equations that explain and quantify how the action potentials of neurons are initiated and propagated.

Finishing the work that was to lead to the Nobel Prize around 1952 Sir Andrew maintained his professorship at Cambridge, turned to the subject of muscle contraction physiology, and was elected Fellow of the Royal Society in 1955. From 1960 thru 1969 he held a faculty position at University College London and in 1963 received the Nobel Prize along with Sir Alan and Sir John Eccles, an Australian who had independently studied similar subject matter. He was to lecture at major institutions on both sides of The Pond, occasionally drawing fire for publicly conceding that Darwin’s Theory does indeed have holes and that some things such as consciousness cannot be explained by evolution.

Knighted in 1974, he received the rarely bestowed Order of Merit (OM) in 1983 and from 1980 thru 1985 was President of the Royal Society, in 1983 upholding, in the face of numerous letters of protest, the group’s election of Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher. In 1984 he was to succeed Sir Alan as Master of Trinity College Cambridge, a position he held until his 1990 age mandated retirement. Sir Andrew lived out his days in Cambridgeshire and continued teaching at Trinity College until his death.

Associate Professor of Medicine, Medical Oncology, Duke University Medical Center

Dr. Herbert I. Hurwitz, Associate Professor of Medicine, Duke University Medical Center, is an internationally recognized oncologist who is at the forefront of antiangiogenic cancer research. He is the clinical director of the Duke Comprehensive Cancer Center’s Phase I Program, one of only 14 NCI-sponsored Phase I Centers of Excellence. In this role, Dr. Hurwitz oversees numerous Phase I clinical trials of novel anticancer agents, with a particular emphasis on antiangiogenic therapies.

His research also includes identifying biomarkers for the evaluation of novel targeted therapies, mechanisms of tumor angiogenesis and angiogenesis inhibitors, and looking at parallels between wound angiogenesis and tumor angiogenesis. Dr. Hurwitz has a particular interest in gastrointestinal cancer and is co-leader of the Duke Gastrointestinal Oncology Program. As a recognized GI cancer expert, Dr. Hurwitz was the Principal Investigator of the pivotal Phase III trial of the antiangiogenic agent bevacizumab (Avastin), in combination with IFL, for metastatic colorectal cancer (mCRC). This seminal trial, published in the New England Journal of Medicine in June 2004, led to the approval of Avastin for mCRC and validated the antiangiogenic approach for cancer therapy.

Dr. Hurwitz completed his medical training at Thomas Jefferson University, Philadelphia, and began his career with a residency in Internal Medicine at the Michael Reese Hospital, Chicago. In 1992, he became a Fellow in Oncology at the Johns Hopkins Oncology Center, Baltimore, where he also obtained a masters degree in clinical investigation. Dr. Hurwitz has authored numerous papers in prestigious medical and scientific journals and lectures internationally, with a focus on anti-VEGF therapies for colorectal cancer and angiogenesis biomarkers.

Dennis Fowler Hightower is an American businessman and politician who served as United States Deputy Secretary of Commerce from August 11, 2009 to August 27, 2010. Hightower was confirmed by the United States Senate on August 7, 2009 to replace John J. Sullivan, who resigned from this office on January 20, 2009. He announced his resignation July 15, 2010.

He previously held executive positions or served on the board of directors with various companies including The Walt Disney Company and Europe Online Networks S.A. Hightower received an M.B.A. from Harvard Business School and a B.S. and honorary doctorate from Howard University.

Dennis Hightower is also a motivational speaker. His areas of discussion include Leadership, Globalization, Emerging Markets, Strategic Planning, International Management and Global Marketing.

Randall E. Harris, M.D., Ph.D., is Professor in the of Epidemiology, College of Medicine, College of Public Health, and Director, of the Center of Molecular Epidemiology and Environmental Health, The Ohio State University Medical Center, Columbus, Ohio. Dr. Harris received a Ph.D. from North Carolina State University, Raleigh, where he specialized in Genetics and Statistics, followed by a medical degree from University of Nebraska College of Medicine in Omaha.

After completing his medical residency in Clinical Pathology and Clinical Preventive Medicine at Duke University Medical Center, he went on to become the Chief of the Division of Epidemiology for the American Health Foundation in New York City. While at the American Health Foundation Dr. Harris worked closely with Dr. Ernst L. Wynder and initiated early idemiologic studies of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS) in the prevention of breast cancer and other malignancies.

In 1990, Dr. Harris moved to Columbus, Ohio, to Chair the Department of Preventative Medicine at Ohio State, and in 1995, he became the founding Director of the Ohio State University School of Public Health. Dr. Harris is a renowned expert on the role of COX-2 in chronic inflammation and in promoting tumorigenesis and angiogenesis, and has authored numerous papers in peer-reviewed journals and book chapters on the use of NSAIDS and selective COX-2 inhibitors in the chemoprevention of various cancer types.

In 2009 Harris was elected as a Fellow in the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS).

Komel Grover is an accomplished strategic development leader in the biopharmaceutical and biotechnology industries. She has an established record of success in creating strategic value by achieving growth in thought leadership, leveraging medical education, engaging in collaborative research, and maximizing the dissemination of pivotal scientific communications.
With more than 15 years of industry experience, Komel has directed corporate leadership over clinical research, education, finance, strategic planning, and medical affairs in the neurology, cardiology, dermatology, and immunology sectors.

Komel led the Strategic Development Platform for Smith & Nephew’s biological drug portfolio where she provided scientific and strategic leadership in support of the company’s biological assets (the only biological products approved by the FDA in wound care). By implementing a corporate-wide advocacy development strategy to engage the top thought leaders in wound care, Komel was instrumental in adding value to the company.

Komel’s educational background includes medical and cancer biology training at the University of Texas Health Science Center. She has also completed coursework at the Pepperdine University Graduate School of Management and the IECS Robert Schumann School of Business.

After graduating Phi Beta Kappa from the State University of New York at Stony Brook, Dr. Ennis earned his medical degree from the New York College of Osteopathic Medicine. He completed, and is board certified in General Surgery, Vascular Surgery and Family Medicine. He subsequently received an MBA from the Keller Graduate School of management in Chicago.

Dr. Ennis has been practicing wound care for 20 years and is currently Professor of Clinical Surgery, Chief – Section Wound Healing Tissue Repair at the University of Illinois at Chicago. He founded, and is director of the first Wound Healing and Tissue Repair Fellowship in the US also at UIC. Dr. Ennis is immediate past president for the Advancement of Wound Care (AAWC), the nations largest non-profit, multidisciplinary wound care organization.

Dr. Ennis has published over 65 articles, abstracts and book chapters and has lectured through-out the world on wound care and vascular diseases. Current research interests include microcirculation, healing outcomes, health economics, and regenerative tissue mechanisms.

Outside interests include guitar, jazz music, basketball, triathlon racing and reading. Married with 2 children, Dr. Ennis also supports his wife Mary’s activities in organizations dedicated to the treatment and cause of autism.

Assistant Director and Chief of Clinical Resources, Division of Comparative Medicine at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).

Dr. Erdman is a leader in the exploration of one of the newest, uncharted frontiers in science: the human microbiome. Within MIT, Dr. Erdman is head of the Erdman Laboratory, which is an NIH-funded research program focused on the roles of microbes in inflammatory disorders, particularly obesity and cancer. Dr. Erdman’s lab also studies how probiotics can be harnessed to promote better health outcomes.

A frequently invited speaker, Dr. Erdman has presented at numerous scientific conferences about the human microbiome and the essential role it plays in human health.

Dr. Erdman completed a postdoctoral training program in Comparative Medicine at MIT and earned a Master of Public Health degree from the Harvard School of Public Health in 1992. She earned a Doctorate in Veterinary Medicine from the Mississippi State University College of Veterinary Medicine.

Director, Clinical Research Foot Care, Endovascular and Vascular Services Department of Surgery, Boston Medical Center and Boston University School of Medicine

Dr. Vickie Driver is a distinguished expert in the field of Podiatric medicine and surgery, with a special emphasis on limb preservation and wound care. She is both nationally and internationally renowned as a clinician, surgeon, researcher and educator. As a dedicated researcher she has served as an Investigator for over thirty important multi-center randomized clinical trials, as well as developed and supervised multiple research fellowship positions.

She is an expert on the use of multi-modality approaches to wound care, including therapeutic angiogenesis, and is involved in a number of Phase II and Phase III studies of topical angiogenic growth factors and gene therapy. Dr. Driver is credited with the development and directorship of two major multidiscipline limb preservation centers—one for the military in Washington State and one for a major teaching hospital and University in Illinois.

She has authored numerous papers in high-level peer-reviewed journals on the use of therapeutic angiogenesis and other modalities for limb preservation in patients at high risk for amputation. Dr. Driver previously served as Director of Clinical Research at the Center for Lower Extremity Ambulatory Research (CLEAR) at the Dr. William M Scholl College of Podiatric Medicine, Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and Science.

She is now Director of Research for Limb Preservation at Boston University of Medicine and Boston Medical Center. Dr. Driver is board certified in foot and ankle surgery by the American Board of Podiatric Surgery and is a Fellow at the American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons. She serves on multiple national and international government and private committees that focus on preventing limb loss and improving wound healing in high-risk populations. Dr. Driver is an outspoken ambassador and patient advocate for lower extremity limb preservation and amputation prevention in the high-risk diabetic patient.

Chief Medical Informatics Officer, Quality and Safety, Massachusetts General Hospital
Director, Laboratory of Computer Science, Massachusetts General Hospital

Assistant Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School Dr. Henry Chueh is one of the nation’s leading experts on medical informatics and a pioneer in the use of computers and Web-based applications to improve clinical research and patient care. He is the Director of Computer Science at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH), Chief Medical Informatics Officer, Center for Quality and Safety and Chief, Division of Biomedical Informatics, Department of Medicine at MGH, and an Assistant Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School.

Dr. Chueh is the principal investigator on high profile medical informatics projects funded by research grants from the National Institutes of Health/National Library of Medicine (NLM), the National Cancer Institute (NCI), and the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ). Currently, with funding from a NIH National Center for Biomedical Computing ‘roadmap’ grant, Dr. Chueh and colleagues are designing and developing an interoperable software framework to provide clinical investigators with the tools to collect and manage project-related research data.

In another ongoing project, funded by AHRQ, he is developing an innovative system of care delivery (ACCORD—Ambulatory Care Compact to Organize Risk and Decision-making), to allow patients to partner with their physicians to monitor care to improve patient, provider, and quality of care outcomes. In collaboration with the NCI, Dr. Chueh was co-principal investigator on a research project to develop a national virtual repository of pathological specimens, and was contracted by the NIH/NLM to create a self-scaling national networked health system. Dr. Chueh has authored numerous peer-reviewed papers on the use of medical informatics and computer modeling to improve clinical decision-making and patient outcomes.

Specifically, Dr. Chueh and colleagues have authored papers on the use of Web-based tools and informatics to manage diabetic patients, on the development of integrated platforms for clinical trial collaboration and education, and on the development and validation of predictive models to connect patients with primary care physicians. Dr. Chueh received his M.D. from Harvard Medical School and completed his primary care residency at MGH. Dr. Chueh also completed a Boston Medical Informatics Fellowship at MGH in association with the NLM. He has an M.S. from the Harvard-MIT Division of Heath Sciences & Technology, and a BA from Harvard-Radcliffe College.

Doctor of Medicine, Institute of Functional and Clinical Anatomy, University Medical Center, Johannes Gutenberg-University, Mainz, Germany.
Dr. Maximilian Ackermann leads the Angiogenesis and Vascular Imaging Group at the Institute of Functional and Clinical Anatomy, University Medical Center of the Johannes Gutenberg-University Mainz in Germany.

His group is focusing on angiogenesis in tumor growth, inflammation, fibrosis, and wound healing as well as on clinical anatomy.

Dr. Ackermann received his M.D. from the University of Mainz, Germany where he did his post-doctoral work in human anatomy. He also trained at the University of Amsterdam.

In a NIH-project with the Harvard Medical School, he investigates the adaptive processes involved in lung regeneration und fibrosis with a focus on microvascular anatomy and patterns of angiogenesis. He serves as medical and strategy consultant to the international management consultancy Roland Berger Strategy Consultants.

Scott Hamilton is an Olympic gold medalist figure skater and highly-regarded television commentator. He won four consecutive U.S. championships (1981–1984), four consecutive World Championships (1981–1984) and a gold medal in the 1984 Olympics. He has been awarded numerous other skating honors, including being the first solo male figure skater to be awarded the Jacques Favart Award (1988). In 1990 he was inducted into the United States Olympic Hall of Fame. His “signature move” in exhibition routines was a backflip, a feat that few other figure skaters could perform.
Hamilton has been a skating commentator for CBS and NBC television for many years, He was the host of the FOX television program “Skating with Celebrities.” He currently serves on the Board of Directors for Special Olympics International.

Scott participates in a wide variety of charitable events, beginning with his own foundation, the Scott Hamilton C.A.R.E.S. Initiative (Cancer Alliance for Research, Education and Survivorship) at the Cleveland Clinic Taussig Center in Cleveland, Ohio, and Provision Healthcare Foundation in Knoxville, Tennessee. CARES includes offshoots, The Fourth Angel Network and his web site and He is a tireless supporter of Target House at St. Jude Children’s Hospital in Memphis, Tennessee and LiveBeyond and Best Buddies, both of Nashville, Tennessee. He also serves on the Board of Directors for Monroe Carrell’s Vanderbilt Children’s Hospital, Special Olympics International and Provision Healthcare Foundation. When not commentating, speaking or supporting his favorite charities, Scott can be found on the golf course and enjoys spending time with his wife and two sons outside Nashville, Tennessee.

Peter co-founded the group Genesis in 1966 and the band went on to make 7 albums. He left Genesis in 1975 and has since made 11 solo albums. His film soundtrack works include Birdy (1984), The Last Temptation of Christ (1989) and Rabbit Proof Fence (2002).
In 1980 Peter conceived of, and founded WOMAD (World of Music Arts and Dance), which has presented over 150 festivals in over 40 countries.

Peter’s Human Rights works include, the coordination of and participation in the Human Rights Now! Tour, in 1988 with Amnesty International. In 1989 he conceived of, and co-founded, giving cameras and computers to human rights activists. Witness has won many awards and in 2008 launched the Hub, providing a platform for human rights video from all over the world.

In 2000 Peter co-founded and conceived of the with Richard Branson, which Nelson Mandela launched in 2007.

Peter’s business interests have been in the field of music, media and technology. In 1987 he founded the Real World Group of companies. In 1999, he co-founded OD2, which became the leading European platform provider for the distribution of on-line music. In 2005 Peter and others purchased Solid State Logic, the world’s leading manufacturer of mixing consoles for music recording, broadcast and post-production, and in 2011 became majority shareholder. He also co-founded and, and is currently developing several projects, including a visual language for the internet, and the first social network for the dead.

Amongst awards Peter has received, are the Man of Peace Award, presented by the Nobel Peace Laureates, the ‘Chevalier dans l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres’ and also the Quadriga Award. Lifetime achievement awards include BT’s Digital Music Pioneer Award, and he has received Grammy awards for his music and video work.

Cindy Crawford is known to the world as one of the original supermodels who defined that pivotal moment when fashion models became stars in their own right.
Crawford studied chemical engineering as a scholarship student at Northwestern University before her modeling career took her to New York. Since then she has graced over 1,000 magazine covers worldwide, including Vogue, Elle, W, Bazaar, Cosmopolitan and Allure.

Cindy used her fame as a springboard to launch a groundbreaking career that has spanned over three decades and resulted in an exceedingly successful and trusted brand representing beauty, fashion, fitness and home. Beyond her modeling career, she hosted a successful MTV show “House of Style”, starred in and produced best-selling exercise videos, created and developed a successful skincare line called Meaningful Beauty as well as a furniture brand called Cindy Crawford Home which combined have grossed over 3 billion dollars in sales.

Cindy has also utilized her success to help raise money and awareness for issues close to her heart. She’s a passionate supporter of cancer charities, having lost her brother Jeff to leukemia when she was 9 years old. As part of her healing, her mother organized a dance marathon to help raise money for the Leukemia Foundation of America. At a young age, Cindy saw how empowering it was to get involved and give back. This has inspired her devotion to help make the world a better place.

The other charities she supports include the American Family Children’s Hospital, Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, the University of Wisconsin Foundation, and the Little Star Foundation.

Dan Rutz has served on the Board of Directors of the Angiogenesis Foundation since 2002. He is a Risk Communications Specialist and Public Health Analyst for The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Atlanta, Ga., where he is engaged in planning (preparation and response) for public health emergencies, including emerging infectious diseases and bio-terrorism threats. Dan also works on the World Health Organization (WHO) initiative to establish, develop, and test an international standard for outbreak risk communication.

Through the U.S. State Department Dan works with journalists, clinicians, and academics on communicating avian and pandemic influenza preparedness in countries (including Egypt, Chile, Nigeria and Indonesia) affected or threatened by avian influenza or a greater pandemic. He is also engaged in advancing U.S. health security activities with bordering countries (Mexico and Canada) and other U.S. Allies (United Kingdom, Germany, Italy, France, and Japan) under the Security and Prosperity Partnership (SPP) and the Global Health Security Initiative (GHSI).

Through CDC agreements and permanent deployments he is engaged in public health planning in China and other countries. Prior to joining the CDC, Dan served as Managing Editor and on-air Sr. Medical Correspondent for the CNN domestic and international television and radio networks for 18 years.

Quentin Andrews Parker has been a board member of the Angiogenesis Foundation since 1996. Quentin has more than 20 years of work and volunteer experience related to the advancement of higher education, as well as social- and healthcare-related causes. Her expertise includes annual giving and major gifts as well as strategic planning, board development, and volunteer management.
She has worked both on staff and as a consultant with prestigious educational institutions such as Radcliffe College and the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard, as well as with national organizations focused on healthcare, social services, and the arts.

She is a member of the board of Women in Development of Greater Boston, and served on the boards of the Massachusetts Chapter of the NSFRE, now the AFP, and the Hospice at Home/Friends of Hospice until its dissolution in 2003. Quentin graduated from Bryn Mawr College with a degree in English Literature.

Shawna Cornelius Li has been involved with the Angiogenesis Foundation since its inception in 1994, and became a Board member in 1997. As its Executive Director from 1994-1999, Shawna wrote the Foundation’s initial application for– and secured– its federal tax-exempt status, and developed all scientific and communications materials during the Foundation’s start-up phase. She also coordinated the Foundation’s debut at the NATO institute for Advanced Studies Conference on Angiogenesis, held in Europe in June 1995.

Shawna holds the position of Associate Veterinarian at the Norton Animal Hospital, Norton Massachusetts. In collaboration with the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Cleveland Metroparks Zoo, and Tufts University School of Medicine, she has conducted published research into the role of angiogenic cytokines in feline malignancies. Shawna has received a number of honors and awards for her work, including the Academic Excellence Award, Radiology Award in Ultrasound, and Phi Zeta Award from Tufts University School of Veterinary Medicine.

Shawna received her D.V.M. with honors from Tufts University School of Veterinary Medicine, and her A.B. cum laude from Harvard College. She is a Licensed Veterinarian in Massachusetts, a member of the American Veterinary Medical Association, and a member of the American Animal Hospital Association.

Louis Hook has served on the Board of Directors of the Angiogenesis Foundation since 1996. He is currently President of LCH Technology Partners, LLC, which provides IT and technology management consulting services to public, private and non-profit organizations. He has 19 years experience in communications technology and systems management, and had his own firm, Compton.Com.Partners, LLC, which provided communication technology consulting and project management services to public entities.

Until his recent return to private consulting, Louis was Chief Information Officer of Los Angeles World Airports’ (LAWA) Information Technology Division, where he was responsible for overseeing all information, operations, telecommunications and security systems for LAWA. He also previously worked in the public sector for the University of California, Los Angeles for 15 years, most recently as Director of the Communications Technology Services Division, which was comprised of 70,000 customer telecommunications, network connectivity and Internet Service Provider businesses.

Louis was Chief Information Officer and Chief Financial Officer for the UCLA Facilities Management Division. Louis has a B.A. from Occidental College in liberal arts with a concentration in Economics and a M.B.A. from the Harvard Business School.

Gerald Gehr, M.D. has been involved with the Angiogenesis Foundation since 1995, first as a clinical advisor, and then as a Board member since 2002. He is Chief of Hematology Oncology at the Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Manchester, New Hampshire, has full-time clinical appointments at several New Hampshire hospitals, and serves as Medical Director of the Manchester VNA Hospice Program.

Dr. Gehr is Clinical Assistant Professor of Medicine at Dartmouth Medical School, and Assistant Professor of Medicine at the Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Professions. He has held teaching positions at Harvard University, Boston University, and Dartmouth Medical School, and served on the boards of numerous professional organizations. He is former President of the New Hampshire Division of the American Cancer Society and a delegate to the National Board, and is a past chairman and current member of the Veterans Administration National Field Advisory Committee for Oncology and the National Bone Marrow Transplant review board.

Dr. Gehr received his M.D. from Baylor College of Medicine, and completed his internship and residency in Internal Medicine at Boston University Affiliated Hospitals, and Hematology and Oncology Fellowships at Boston City Hospital and Boston University Hospital. He is certified by the American Board of Internal Medicine in Internal Medicine, Hematology and Medical Oncology, and is a member of the American Society of Hematology and American Society of Clinical Oncology and the Massachusetts Medical Society.

The Edge, born David Howell Evans, has served on the Angiogenesis Foundation’s board of directors since 2007. He is a guitarist with the Irish rock band U2, and is commonly described as one of the most influential guitarists of his generation. One of the principle songwriters of U2, The Edge has also written extensively for other projects, including movie scores (Captive, Gangs of New York, Golden Eye), for animated series (the Batman TV series), and for the stage (A Clockwork Orange by the Royal Shakespeare company 1990), and often works in collaboration with U2′s lead singer, Bono.

The Edge has been active in politics and philanthropy since early in his musical career. In 2006, he and other members of U2 received Amnesty International’s Ambassador of Conscience Award in 2005, The Edge co-founded Music Rising, a charity initiative that provides musical instruments for the musicians, schools and churches of the Gulf Coast Region.

Nicole Firestone, M.B.A. has served on the board of directors of the Angiogenesis Foundation since 2002. She was a former partner with Corriente Advisors, LLC, a hedge fund based in Fort Worth, Texas with over $2.3 billion in net assets under management, as well as a former Principal at Goff Moore Strategic Partners, L.P. (GMSP), a company formed in 1998 to serve as a primary investment vehicle for Richard E. Rainwater.

In addition to general investment analysis and fund management, Nicole’s expertise includes significant structuring experience involving the creation and negotiation of both debt and equity investments across a variety of complex capital structures. Prior to joining GMSP, Nicole worked at Goldman, Sachs & Co. in the investment banking division. Nicole holds a B.S. in Business from the University of Southern California, and earned her M.B.A. from the Harvard Business School.

Christopher J. Bonar, V.M.D. has served on the Angiogenesis Foundation’s Board of Directors since its inception in 1994. He is a founding member and current Chairman of the Board. Dr. Bonar is co-founder and President of the Cleveland Aquarium. He holds the position of Adjunct Associate Professor in the Department of Veterinary Preventive Medicine, College of Veterinary Medicine, The Ohio State University, and serves as both Consulting Veterinarian for the Cleveland Botanical Garden and as Consulting Veterinarian and Research Associate for the Cleveland Museum of Natural History.

Since 1994, Chris has been Associate Zoo Veterinarian for the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo. Chris received his A.B. from Harvard College, his V.M.D. from the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine in 1991, and did his post-doctoral internship in Wildlife Medicine at the Wildlife Center of Virginia.

Dr. Vincent W. Li is the Chief Operating Officer and Scientific Director of the Angiogenesis Foundation. He has been involved in the field of angiogenesis since 1998, and has been on the Board since its inception in 1994. Dr. Li conducted his bachelor’s thesis with Harvard Professor Howard Green, a pioneer of epidermal and fibroblast biology, and performed his doctoral dissertation on growth factors and tumor angiogenesis as a Howard Hughes Medical Institute Fellow in the research laboratory of angiogenesis pioneer Dr. Judah Folkman.

He currently serves as Medical Director of the Angiogenesis and Wound Healing Center in the Department of Dermatology at the Brigham & Women’s Hospital, and Harvard Medical School. His honors include the Paul Dudley White Award, the MIT-Japan Science and Technology Prize, First Place Award in the Scientific and Clinical poster competition at the American Academy of Dermatology annual meeting, and the highest recognition (Daland Award) from the New England Cancer Society. Dr. Li received his bachelor’s degree magna cum laude, from Harvard College, his M.D. cum laude from Harvard Medical School and M.I.T.’s Health Sciences & Technology Division, and his M.B.A. from Harvard Business School.

He was also the Fiske Scholar at Cambridge University, England. He completed his clinical training in internal medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital and in dermatology through the Harvard Program. Dr. Li is an active member of the American Academy of Dermatology, American Society for Clinical Oncology, Wound Healing Society, and has a leadership role on the national Wound Healing Cooperative Group (WHCG). He publishes and lectures internationally.

Treatment of infection in burns

Burn injury damages the skin which is the primary barrier to infection. Damaged skin that provides a fertile ground to bacterial growth, together with immunosuppression that accompanies major burns, are the main contributors to wound infection, invasive sepsis and if not managed, death. With the advancement of resuscitation methods in burn patients, deaths due to hypovolemia and hyperosmolar shock are now uncommon. Meanwhile, sepsis is now the commonest cause of death following burn injury and contributes to almost 75–85% of all burn victim deaths.[8,9] Over the last few decades, many advancements have positively impacted on the incidence of burn wound infections and these include, topical and systemic antimicrobial therapies, early burn wound excision and closure and the introduction of infection control measures in modern burn units such as isolation facilities.

Systemic antibiotics

The discovery of penicillin by the Scottish scientist, Sir Alexander Fleming in 1928 was a major breakthrough in the fight against microbial infections but it was not until World War II (WW2) that a way to manufacture the drug in large industrial scale was achieved. Penicillin played a crucial part in the treatment of the burn victims of the Coconut Grove fire in Boston in 1942, as it combated the Staphylococcus bacteria which typically led to toxic shock syndrome and also infected skin grafts. The emergence of methicillin-resistant staphylococcal strains however curbed the effectiveness of natural penicillins as the penicillinase produced by these bacteria hydrolyse the penicillin B-lactam ring and render them ineffective which in turn necessitated the development of penicillinase-resistant penicillins such as methicillin and cloxacillin. Streptococcal organisms are a major bane in the treatment of burn injuries as even the presence of a few B-hemolytic streptococci such as Group A (Streptococcus pyogenes) and Group B (Streptococcus agalactiae) can lead to a wound infection, loss of skin grafts and failure of a primary wound closure. Fortunately, natural penicillins remain effective and are bactericidal to these bacteria. Although staphyloccocal and streptococcal infections remain a major problem in burns, the landscape of microbes in burns continues to evolve with the emergence of antibiotic resistant strains e.g. the vancomycin-resistant enterococci (VRE) and Pseudomonas spp. which is now one of the most repeatedly encountered wound pathogen and a leading cause of noscomial infections in burn patients.

Topical therapies

The aim of topical therapies has changed over the centuries as we understand increasingly more about the pathophysiology of burn wounds. In the early 20 th century, the goal of topical therapies was to prevent the release of ‘toxins’ from the burn wound and to dry out the wound to allow formation of a hard coagulum to minimize fluid loss. A variety of therapies were developed to achieve this such as the tannic acid spray described by Davidson in 1925[10] which was believed to produce a cleaner wound. However its use was stopped when it was found to be a hepatotoxic.[11]

One of the first topical antimicrobial treatments discovered was sodium hypochlorite (NaClO) in the 18 th century by Berthollet. Its use was hampered by irritation it caused,[12] but this was later discovered to be due to its variable quality and the free alkali or chlorine it contained. In 1915, Dr. Henry Dakin successfully developed a method of synthesizing hypochlorite without its irritating contaminants and found initially that a concentration of 0.5% was most effective as an antiseptic solution[13] (revised later to 0.025%[14]). This was further developed and used successfully in the treatment of burn wounds with a protocol of mechanical cleansing, surgical debridement and topical application of hypochlorite solution.

The major milestone in topical burn therapy was the application of solutions of silver compounds or salts, which played an important role in reducing the rate of burn wound sepsis and mortality. Silver sulfadiazine was developed by Charles Fox in the 1960’s[15] and has become the mainstay of topical antimicrobial therapy due to its success in controlling infection and minimal side effect profile. Mafenide acetate (Sulfamylon)[16] briefly was a viable alternative to the use of silver compound solutions in the treatment of infections but due to its carbonic anhydrase inhibitory effects which can lead to systemic acidosis, its use was all but discontinued except in cases of treatment of invasive wound infections. The other common silver-based therapy was silver nitrate, described by Moyer et al. in 1965.[17] Silver based topical treatments were successful in controlling infections especially Pseudomonas aeroginosa infections.

Recent development in dressing technology have seen the use of a variety of interesting materials incorporated into the dressing. There is emerging evidence for the use of dressings and gels[18–21] containing the naturally occurring glycosaminoglycan, chitin, which prevents early extension of burn injury[22], has antimicrobial properties,[23,24] promotes fibroblast proliferation and angiogenesis[25] and may promote burn wounds to heal, effects that are augmented by the incorporation of growth factors into the gel.[26,27] There has also been studies on the use of carbon fibre in dressings which has been shown to increase the absorptive capacity of the dressing, reduce inflammation, reduce bacterial growth and promote healing.[28,29]

Role of non-pharmalogical therapies

Although antibiotic treatment is a major front in the war against infection, non-pharmalogical interventions play equally important roles, such as strict handwashing and hygenic nursing standards and patient isolation. The need for strict burn patient isolation became an important issue after WW2. State of the art burn centres were established in the United States then across the world. The Brooks Army center is an example of facility that was designed with infection control and patient isolation in mind.

Cell types used in skin regeneration

Cells are the main component of the tissue-engineered skin used for burn therapies (Table 1). They include both stem and somatic cells and can be divided into three main groups: autologous, allogeneic, and xenogeneic. One of the main trends in choosing a cell type for patient treatment is the use of autologous cells as they do not cause immune rejection and their tumorigenicity is low due to the absence of epigenetic manipulations. Nowadays, animal cells are not widely used for skin tissue regeneration, only ECM or its components that they synthesize. Plant stem cells, which are commonly applied in cosmetics, can be interesting as they have no use limitations when compared to animal and human cells. Of course, they cannot be used in skin substitute development as a cell component but they can provide bioactive substances, which can improve the wound healing process [40].

Fibroblasts and keratinocytes are common cells used in products for wound and burn healing [41]. Keratinocytes are the major cell component of the epidermis and responsible for its stratified structure and form numerous tight intercellular junctions. Fibroblasts are the main cell type of the dermis and produce ECM components and secrete various growth factors (TGF-β), cytokines (TNF-α), and matrix metalloproteinases, which ensure the ECM formation and keratinocyte proliferation and differentiation [16]. Commercial products such as Epicel, Cryoskin, and BioSeed-S contain keratinocytes Dermagraft, TransCyte and Hyalograft 3D—fibroblasts and Apligraf, Theraskin, and OrCell—a combination. The use of these cells enables the large-scale production of standardized product batches. However, these materials are mostly non-permanent bioactive dressings, which provide cytokines, ECM, and growth factors for the successful skin reparation [41,42,43]. Immune rejection is commonly reported with allogeneic fibroblasts and keratinocytes, [44] but this is mostly shown for allogeneic keratinocytes that can be explained by the difference in HLA expression and cytokine production [45]. Fetal fibroblasts are of particular interest because they can significantly improve skin repair due to the high expansion ability, low immunogenicity, and intense secretion of bioactive substances such as basic fibroblast growth factor, vascular endothelial growth factor, and keratinocyte growth factor. However, ethical issues limit their application [46,47,48,49].

Epidermal stem cells (ESC) are of particular interest for skin tissue regeneration as they have favorable features such as high proliferation rate and easy access and keep their potency and differentiation potential for long periods [65, 82]. They are one of the skin stem cell types, either heterogeneous or autogenous origins (Table 2). ESC are mostly connected to the process of skin regeneration [17]. They are rare, infrequently divide and generate short-lived and rapidly dividing cells, which are involved in the regeneration process [65]. Their main population, responsible for skin repair, is located in the basal layer of the epidermis however, they can also be revealed in the base of sebaceous glands and the bulge region of hair follicles [6, 65, 82]. However, while working with ESC culture, we may face progressive aneuploidy or polyploidy and mutation accumulation after several passages. Moreover, as they can be easily derived from the patient’s skin and transplanted to the same patient, ESC are not restricted by ethical issues. Grafts containing autologous holoclones ESC have proven to be effective in treating vast skin defects: epidermolysis, skin and ocular burns, etc. [83, 84].

Mesenchymal stromal cells (MSC) have similar (not identical) features as ESC and can be derived from various tissues, even the skin as mentioned previously [98]. They have a high differentiation potential and a certain degree of plasticity and may generate cells of mesodermal, ectodermal, and endodermal lineages [99]. Moreover, paracrine, trophic, and immunomodulatory MSC properties enable their clinical use [100, 101]. MSC can migrate to the injured tissues, differentiate, and regulate the tissue regeneration by the production of growth factors, cytokines, and chemokines [102]. Their immunomodulatory activity is based on the release of anti-inflammatory cytokines and the inhibition of proliferation of CD4 + and CD8 + natural killer cells, T cells, and B cells. MSC are considered to be hypoimmunogenic because they do not express class I and II molecules of the major histocompatibility complex (MHC) and co-stimulatory proteins (e.g., CD40, CD80, CD86). Therefore, the transplantation of allogenic MSC has a low risk of the immune rejection [103,104,105]. In burn therapy, adipose-derived stromal cells refined from the stromal vascular fraction are widely applied because of their easy access and isolation procedure and inspiring improvement of the healing processes [106,107,108]. They are showed to preserve their therapeutic effects after freezing that ensures their multiple use [109]. It is worth mentioning that even the freshly isolated stromal vascular fraction is showed to be effective in burn therapy [110], but compared to adipose-derived stromal cells, it can release high concentrations of inflammatory mediators [111]. However, the number of randomized controlled preclinical and clinical trials remains insufficient [106].

Among the MSC derived from other tissues (adipose tissue, umbilical cord, etc.) the MSC derived from bone marrow (BMSC) requires special attention. They also possess plasticity and can differentiate into tissues of mesodermal, ectodermal, and endodermal origin [112, 113]. BMSC are considered to participate in the skin development. It has been reported that bone marrow can generate not only hematopoietic and mesenchymal cells but also fibroblast-like cells that are located in the dermis and actively proliferate in the skin during the regeneration processes [69, 114, 115]. The possible disadvantages of BMSC are that the tumor microenvironment may induce changes in the angiogenesis ability and anti-tumor response. Moreover, they may generate tumor-associated fibroblasts and shift a normal immune cell phenotype to an immunosuppressive and tumor promoting one [116].

However, nowadays, the greatest interest in tissue regeneration belongs to induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSC) using somatic cell reprogramming like a magic wand, we can develop patient-specific cells with a tailored phenotype and apply them in clinics [117]. The most commonly used cells for cell reprogramming are dermal fibroblasts, melanocytes, and keratinocytes since they can be easily accessed and isolated from punch biopsies [118]. Research has shown that both murine and human iPSC can be differentiated into dermal fibroblasts [119], keratinocytes [120], and melanocytes [121], opening a door for iPSC technology into dermatology applications. The interesting fact is that fibroblasts achieved via this technique may show increased properties compared to those of the parental fibroblasts, e.g., the exceeded ECM production [122]. This might be related to the changed epigenetic signature that occurs during iPSC differentiation and is critical for their use in skin tissue regeneration. However, when cells are reprogrammed with tumorigenic c-Myc and this transgene remains in iPSC, the risk of tumor formation increases, because c-Myc might be reactivated [123]. Since modern methods for cell purification cannot ensure the full separation of differentiated cells from iPSC, undifferentiated and partly differentiated cells may be implanted into a patient and increase the possibility of tumor formation [124].

In third-degree burn treatment, hydrogel helps grow new, scar-free skin

Johns Hopkins researchers have developed a jelly-like material and wound treatment method that, in early experiments on skin damaged by severe burns, appeared to regenerate healthy, scar-free tissue.

In the Dec. 12-16 online Early Edition of Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, the researchers reported their promising results from mouse tissue tests. The new treatment has not yet been tested on human patients. But the researchers say the procedure, which promotes the formation of new blood vessels and skin, including hair follicles, could lead to greatly improved healing for injured soldiers, home fire victims and other people with third-degree burns.

Dextran hydrogel for burn wound healing. (A) Surgery procedure: We placed wounds on the posterior-dorsum of each mouse and performed burn wound excisions after 48 h. We covered wounds with either dextran hydrogels or control scaffold, followed by their coverage with dressing. We covered the control wounds only with dressing. (B) Photo image of wound healing within 21 d demonstrate a more complete wound healing in burn wounds treated with dextran hydrogel than in wounds treated with control scaffolds or dressing alone.

The treatment involved a simple wound dressing that included a specially designed hydrogel—a water-based, three-dimensional framework of polymers. This material was developed by researchers at Johns Hopkins’ Whiting School of Engineering, working with clinicians at the Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center Burn Center and the Department of Pathology at the university’s School of Medicine.

Third-degree burns typically destroy the top layers of skin down to the muscle. They require complex medical care and leave behind ugly scarring. But in the journal article, the Johns Hopkins team reported that their hydrogel method yielded better results. “This treatment promoted the development of new blood vessels and the regeneration of complex layers of skin, including hair follicles and the glands that produce skin oil,” said Sharon Gerecht, an assistant professor of chemical and biomolecular engineering who was principal investigator on the study.

n early testing, this hydrogel, developed by Johns Hopkins researchers, helped improve healing in third-degree burns. Photo by Will Kirk/

Gerecht said the hydrogel could form the basis of an inexpensive burn wound treatment that works better than currently available clinical therapies, adding that it would be easy to manufacture on a large scale. Gerecht suggested that because the hydrogel contains no drugs or biological components to make it work, the Food and Drug Administration would most likely classify it as a device. Further animal testing is planned before trials on human patients begin. But Gerecht said, “It could be approved for clinical use after just a few years of testing.”

John Harmon, a professor of surgery at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine and director of surgical research at Bayview, described the mouse study results as “absolutely remarkable. We got complete skin regeneration, which never happens in typical burn wound treatment.”

If the treatment succeeds in human patients, it could address a serious form of injury. Harmon, a coauthor of the PNAS journal article, pointed out that 100,000 third-degree burns are treated in U. S. burn centers like Bayview every year. A burn wound dressing using the new hydrogel could have enormous potential for use in applications beyond common burns, including treatment of diabetic patients with foot ulcers, Harmon said.

Guoming Sun, Gerecht’s Maryland Stem Cell Research Postdoctoral Fellow and lead author on the paper, has been working with these hydrogels for the last three years, developing ways to improve the growth of blood vessels, a process called angiogenesis. “Our goal was to induce the growth of functional new blood vessels within the hydrogel to treat wounds and ischemic disease, which reduces blood flow to organs like the heart,” Sun said. “These tests on burn injuries just proved its potential.”

Gerecht says the hydrogel is constructed in such a way that it allows tissue regeneration and blood vessel formation to occur very quickly. “Inflammatory cells are able to easily penetrate and degrade the hydrogel, enabling blood vessels to fill in and support wound healing and the growth of new tissue,” she said. For burns, the faster this process occurs, Gerecht added, the less there is a chance for scarring.

Originally, her team intended to load the gel with stem cells and infuse it with growth factors to trigger and direct the tissue development. Instead, they tested the gel alone. “We were surprised to see such complete regeneration in the absence of any added biological signals,” Gerecht said.

Sun added, “Complete skin regeneration is desired for various wound injuries. With further fine-tuning of these kinds of biomaterial frameworks, we may restore normal skin structures for other injuries such as skin ulcers.”

Gerecht and Harmon say they don’t fully understand how the hydrogel dressing is working. After it is applied, the tissue progresses through the various stages of wound repair, Gerecht said. After 21 days, the gel has been harmlessly absorbed, and the tissue continues to return to the appearance of normal skin.

The hydrogel is mainly made of water with dissolved dextran—a polysaccharide (sugar molecule chains). “It also could be that the physical structure of the hydrogel guides the repair,” Gerecht said. Harmon speculates that the hydrogel may recruit circulating bone marrow stem cells in the bloodstream. Stem cells are special cells that can grow into practically any sort of tissue if provided with the right chemical cue. “It’s possible the gel is somehow signaling the stem cells to become new skin and blood vessels,” Harmon said.

Neovascularization is a critical determinant of wound-healing outcomes for deep burn injuries. We hypothesize that dextran-based hydrogels can serve as instructive scaffolds to promote neovascularization and skin regeneration in third-degree burn wounds. Dextran hydrogels are soft and pliable, offering opportunities to improve the management of burn wound treatment. We first developed a procedure to treat burn wounds on mice with dextran hydrogels. In this procedure, we followed clinical practice of wound excision to remove full-thickness burned skin, and then covered the wound with the dextran hydrogel and a dressing layer. Our procedure allows the hydrogel to remain intact and securely in place during the entire healing period, thus offering opportunities to simplify the management of burn wound treatment. A 3-week comparative study indicated that dextran hydrogel promoted dermal regeneration with complete skin appendages. The hydrogel scaffold facilitated early inflammatory cell infiltration that led to its rapid degradation, promoting the infiltration of angiogenic cells into the healing wounds. Endothelial cells homed into the hydrogel scaffolds to enable neovascularization by day 7, resulting in an increased blood flow significantly greater than treated and untreated controls. By day 21, burn wounds treated with hydrogel developed a mature epithelial structure with hair follicles and sebaceous glands. After 5 weeks of treatment, the hydrogel scaffolds promoted new hair growth and epidermal morphology and thickness similar to normal mouse skin. Collectively, our evidence shows that customized dextran-based hydrogel alone, with no additional growth factors, cytokines, or cells, promoted remarkable neovascularization and skin regeneration and may lead to novel treatments for dermal wounds.

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Brian Wang is a Futurist Thought Leader and a popular Science blogger with 1 million readers per month. His blog is ranked #1 Science News Blog. It covers many disruptive technology and trends including Space, Robotics, Artificial Intelligence, Medicine, Anti-aging Biotechnology, and Nanotechnology.

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Granulocyte/macrophage colony-stimulating factor treatment of human chronic ulcers promotes angiogenesis associated with de novo vascular endothelial growth factor transcription in the ulcer bed

Background Granulocyte/macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF), a cytokine with pleiotropic functions, has been successfully employed in the treatment of chronic skin ulcers. The biological effects underlying GM-CSF action in impaired wound healing have been only partly clarified.

Objectives To investigate the effects of GM-CSF treatment of chronic venous ulcers on lesion vascularization and on the local synthesis of the angiogenic factors vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and placenta growth factor (PlGF).

Methods Patients with nonhealing venous leg ulcers were treated with intradermal injection of recombinant human GM-CSF, and biopsies were taken at the ulcer margin before and 5 days after administration. Wound vascularization was analysed by immunohistochemistry using antiplatelet endothelial cell adhesion molecule-1/CD31 and anti-α-smooth muscle actin antibodies. VEGF and PlGF transcription was assessed by in situ hybridization. To identify the cell populations transcribing VEGF within the ulcer bed, the VEGF hybridization signal was correlated with the immunostaining for different cell type markers on serial sections. Direct induction of VEGF transcription by GM-CSF was investigated in GM-CSF-treated cultured macrophages and keratinocytes.

Results Blood vessel density was significantly increased in the ulcer bed following GM-CSF treatment. VEGF transcripts were localized in keratinocytes at the ulcer margin both before and after GM-CSF treatment, whereas a VEGF hybridization signal was evident within the ulcer bed only following administration. PlGF mRNA was barely detectable in keratinocytes at the ulcer margin and was not visibly increased after treatment. Unlike VEGF, a specific PlGF hybridization signal could not be detected in cells within the ulcer following GM-CSF administration. Monocytes/macrophages were the main cell population transcribing VEGF after GM-CSF treatment. In vitro analysis demonstrated that VEGF transcription can be directly stimulated by GM-CSF in a differentiated monocytic cell line, but not in keratinocytes.

Conclusions Our data show that increased vascularization is associated with GM-CSF treatment of chronic venous ulcers and indicate that inflammatory cell-derived VEGF may act as an angiogenic mediator of the healing effect of GM-CSF in chronic ulcers.

In third-degree burn treatment, hydrogel helps grow new, scar-free skin

IMAGE: In early testing, this hydrogel, developed by Johns Hopkins researchers, helped improve healing in third-degree burns. view more

Johns Hopkins researchers have developed a jelly-like material and wound treatment method that, in early experiments on skin damaged by severe burns, appeared to regenerate healthy, scar-free tissue.

In the Dec. 12-16 online Early Edition of Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences , the researchers reported their promising results from mouse tissue tests. The new treatment has not yet been tested on human patients. But the researchers say the procedure, which promotes the formation of new blood vessels and skin, including hair follicles, could lead to greatly improved healing for injured soldiers, home fire victims and other people with third-degree burns.

The treatment involved a simple wound dressing that included a specially designed hydrogel -- a water-based, three-dimensional framework of polymers. This material was developed by researchers at Johns Hopkins' Whiting School of Engineering, working with clinicians at the Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center Burn Center and the Department of Pathology at the university's School of Medicine.

Third-degree burns typically destroy the top layers of skin down to the muscle. They require complex medical care and leave behind ugly scarring. But in the journal article, the Johns Hopkins team reported that their hydrogel method yielded better results. "This treatment promoted the development of new blood vessels and the regeneration of complex layers of skin, including hair follicles and the glands that produce skin oil," said Sharon Gerecht, an assistant professor of chemical and biomolecular engineering who was principal investigator on the study.

Gerecht said the hydrogel could form the basis of an inexpensive burn wound treatment that works better than currently available clinical therapies, adding that it would be easy to manufacture on a large scale. Gerecht suggested that because the hydrogel contains no drugs or biological components to make it work, the Food and Drug Administration would most likely to classify it as a device. Further animal testing is planned before trials on human patients begin. But Gerecht said, "It could be approved for clinical use after just a few years of testing."

John Harmon, a professor of surgery at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine and director of surgical research at Bayview, described the mouse study results as "absolutely remarkable. We got complete skin regeneration, which never happens in typical burn wound treatment."

If the treatment succeeds in human patients, it could address a serious form of injury. Harmon, a coauthor of the PNAS journal article, pointed out that 100,000 third-degree burns are treated every year in U. S. burn centers like Bayview's. A burn wound dressing using the new hydrogel could have enormous potential for use in applications beyond common burns, including treatment of diabetic patients with foot ulcers, Harmon said.

Guoming Sun, a Maryland Stem Cell Research Postdoctoral Fellow in Gerecht's lab and lead author on the paper, has been working with these hydrogels for the past three years, developing ways to improve the growth of blood vessels, a process called angiogenesis. "Our goal was to induce the growth of functional new blood vessels within the hydrogel to treat wounds and ischemic disease, which reduces blood flow to organs like the heart," Sun said. "These tests on burn injuries just proved its potential."

Gerecht says the hydrogel is constructed in such a way that it allows tissue regeneration and blood vessel formation to occur very quickly. "Inflammatory cells are able to easily penetrate and degrade the hydrogel, enabling blood vessels to fill in and support wound healing and the growth of new tissue," she said. For burns, the faster this process occurs, Gerecht added, the less there is a chance for scarring.

Originally, her team intended to load the gel with stem cells and infuse it with growth factors to trigger and direct the tissue development. Instead, they tested the gel alone. "We were surprised to see such complete regeneration in the absence of any added biological signals," Gerecht said.

Sun added, "Complete skin regeneration is desired for various wound injuries. With further fine-tuning of these kinds of biomaterial frameworks, we may restore normal skin structures for other injuries such as skin ulcers."

Gerecht and Harmon say they don't fully understand how the hydrogel dressing is working. After it is applied, the tissue progresses through the various stages of wound repair, Gerecht said. After 21 days, the gel has been harmlessly absorbed, and the tissue continues to return to the appearance of normal skin.

The hydrogel is mainly made of water with dissolved dextran, a polysaccharide (sugar molecule chains). "It also could be that the physical structure of the hydrogel guides the repair," Gerecht said. Harmon speculates that the hydrogel may recruit circulating bone marrow stem cells in the bloodstream. Stem cells are special cells that can grow into practically any sort of tissue if provided with the right chemical cue. "It's possible the gel is somehow signaling the stem cells to become new skin and blood vessels," Harmon said.

Additional co-authors of the study included Charles Steenbergen, a professor in the Department of Pathology Karen Fox-Talbot, a senior research specialist from the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine and physician researchers Xianjie Zhang, Raul Sebastian and Maura Reinblatt from the Department of Surgery and Hendrix Burn and Wound Lab. From the Whiting School's Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, other co-authors were doctoral students Yu-I (Tom) Shen and Laura Dickinson, who is a Johns Hopkins Institute for NanoBioTechnology (INBT) National Science Foundation IGERT fellow. Gerecht is an affiliated faculty member of INBT.

The work was funded in part by the Maryland Stem Cell Research Fund Exploratory Grant and Postdoctoral Fellowship and the National Institutes of Health.

The Johns Hopkins Technology Transfer staff has filed a provisional patent application to protect the intellectual property involved in this project.

Digital color images of the researchers and the hydrogel available contact Mary Spiro or Phil Sneiderman.

Related links:
Sharon Gerecht's Lab: http://www. jhu. edu/ chembe/ gerecht/
Johns Hopkins Burn Center: http://www. hopkinsmedicine. org/ burn/
Johns Hopkins Institute for NanoBioTechnology: http://inbt. jhu. edu/

Disclaimer: AAAS and EurekAlert! are not responsible for the accuracy of news releases posted to EurekAlert! by contributing institutions or for the use of any information through the EurekAlert system.

Genetically Engineered Skin to Treat Disease, Promote Scarless Wound Healing, and More

Xiaoyang Wu is using genetically modified skin as an engineering platform to provide a solution for diseases beyond skin disorders.

The largest organ in the human body, skin is a robust system with great potential to support not only basic research, but to serve as a platform for stem cell engineering.

This is the focus of Xiaoyang Wu’s work, which is dedicated to understanding the dynamics, signaling, and clinical applications of skin stem cells. Wu has been working in the field for more than 30 years and is currently an associate professor in the Ben May Department of Cancer Research at the University of Chicago. He also is the founder of two companies, GeCell Therapeutics and Maponos Therapeutics.

With the help of the Polsky for Entrepreneurship and Innovation, Wu has patented an engineering platform for healing and treating skin disease by using genetically modified skin.

Beyond skin disease, however, Wu has developed skin grafts that can deliver specific proteins, detect compounds, and remove harmful toxins from the body, to treat various diseases. This includes rare genetic disorders, hemophilia, obesity, and diabetes.

Among other uses, Wu in 2018 described a novel approach to quell cocaine addiction and protect against overdose. The studies, conducted in mice, involved adding the anti-cocaine gene to the animal’s skin’s cells, which were then grafted back onto the mouse.

According to the researchers, “Cutaneous gene therapy through skin transplants that elicit drug elimination may offer a therapeutic option to address drug abuse.”

Scarless Wound Healing

Combining skin biology with material synthesis, Wu also has filed a patent for a new material that will be able to help skin wounds heal without scarring.

“For severe skin wounds, scarring is the most significant post-treatment issue for the patient,” explained Wu, who is developing a way to eliminate scars by manipulating the pathways of healing. The process is tricky, he said, because these pathways are also important to heal wounds.

“We have to find a better way to control the pathway,” Wu explained, noting that they are working to design a particle that would only block this pathway after a certain time point, because in the early phase of healing, this pathway needs to be unencumbered.

“During the resolution phase in skin wound healing, we need to suppress that signal,” said Wu, “Because too much will promote fibrosis in the dermal tissue leading to scarring.”

Drawn-on-Skin Electronics

In collaboration with other researchers at the University of Houston, Wu also is exploring the use of Drawn-on-Skin (DoS) electronics for sensing and point-of-care treatment. These electronics are created by drawing on human skin with liquid semiconducting inks.

“Human skin offers a wealth of physiological and physical information that can be utilized to monitor, prevent, and treat adverse health conditions. Through directly interfacing electronic devices with the skin, information such as the state of the heart, the condition of muscle, the impedance, and hydration of the skin, can all be extracted,” the researchers explained in a paper published in Nature Communications earlier this year.

For this work, Wu’s lab tested the writable ink on skin grafts grown in his lab where he tested for any adverse reactions. “By providing electrical stimulation we can enhance wound healing,” said Wu, speaking to the use of DoS electronics. The researchers also are exploring other ways of using the ink.

As Wu explained, the goal is to change the skin into a sort of sensing device that could detect abnormal activity, such as those leading up to a heart attack or stroke. Using an engineered skin graft, the writeable ink could be used to translate changes into a signal that is viewable.

“Patients could use a phone or another device to get a warning about something critical ongoing in their body,” Wu said.

Wu is among several University of Chicago researchers showcasing their work at Illinois Ignite 2020. Pre-recorded presentations will be posted on September 24, 2020, and will remain live until October 9, 2020.

>> Register for the virtual event, here.