HSCI faculty receive international recognition

April 12, 2016

Two HSCI Principal Faculty members, Leonard Zon, MD, and Fernando Camargo, PhD, have received awards for their outstanding contribution to the field of stem cell science from the International Society for Stem Cell Research (ISSCR), a world-renowned international community of more than 4,000 stem cell researchers.

Leonard Zon, an HSCI Executive Committee member and a Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator, pioneered the use of zebrafish to study blood formation, hematopoietic stem cells, and blood cancers. He received the ISSCR’s inaugural Tobias Award Lecture, which recognizes hematology research and direct translational or clinical research related to cell therapy for hematological disorders.  

"Dr. Zon’s research epitomizes the bench-to-bedside impact that we strive for. His research using zebrafish demonstrates the power of model organisms to understand fundamental aspects of hematopoiesis and the ability to translate those discoveries into new therapies,” said ISSCR President, Sean Morrison.

“It is a great honor to be the first recipient of the Tobias Award of the ISSCR. The Tobias family has created a wonderful opportunity for future aspiring researchers in Hematology,” Zon said. “My hope is that studies of stem cells will continue to alleviate the difficult symptoms of blood diseases and cancer.”

Fernando Camargo, who investigates the molecular mechanisms of the Hippo signaling pathway as well as blood stem cells, received the Outstanding Young Investigator Award. The award recognizes exceptional achievements by a stem cell researcher in the early part of his or her independent career.

“Receiving the award means a lot in terms of recognition,” Camargo said. “It is a tremendous honor.”

“Dr. Camargo is an innovative young scientist and we look forward to watching as his research transforms our knowledge of stem cell biology, disease and regeneration and to involving him in ISSCR leadership activities," said ISSCR CEO Nancy Witty.

Zon and Camargo are HSCI Principal Faculty members at Harvard’s Department of Stem Cell and Regenerative Biology and integral members of the Stem Cell Program at Boston Children’s Hospital, of which Zon is the director. They will receive their awards at the ISSCR 2016 Annual Meeting in June.