Jamie Shuda Wins 2020 Bruce Alberts Award for Excellence in Science Education

Dr. Jamie Shuda and collaborator Dr. Steven Farber (Carnegie Institution of Washington) have received the 2020 Bruce Alberts Award for Excellence in Science Education from the American Society for Cell Biology (ASCB). The pair was recognized for their partnership in creating Project BioEYES.

The Bruce Alberts Award recognizes innovative and sustained contributions to science education. It prioritizes efforts with a national impact.

Jamie and Steven began working together on Project BioEYES in 2002, launching their program to serve Philadelphia students. Since then, this innovative outreach initiative has reached more than 100,000 students in Baltimore, South Bend, Indiana, and other cities across the country and abroad. In addition to operating BioEYES, Jamie and Steven continue to evaluate its impact on learners. The pair has published several studies focusing on program design and outcomes to aid the larger science education community.

Aside from her collaboration with Steven, Jamie oversees the IRM’s entire portfolio of STEM outreach programs. These programs reach hundreds of children in Philadelphia each year and draw on the combined talents of Penn students, staff, and researchers.

Congratulations to Jamie & Steven!

 

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The 2020 IRM ISSCR Viewer Guide

Take an IRM-guided tour of this week’s meeting with our ISSCR viewer guide.

For the first time ever, the International Society for Stem Cell Research (ISSCR) Annual Meeting will be held virtually, from June 23 to June 27. This year, physical movement and jet lag won’t limit your ability to catch talks and meet new people. However, with so much great stuff happening over the next few days, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed.

Let us help you with that. Below is an “ISSCR viewer guide” featuring talks and posters from University of Pennsylvania and Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) researchers.

PRO TIP: While this guide sorts everything by day and time (Eastern Daylight Time for Philly folks), registered attendees can view all of this content for 30 days. But you’ll want to watch these awesome scientists live, preferably with a half-eaten pastry and to-go cup of coffee to simulate the full scientific conference experience.

Did we miss something? Email yaroshc@pennmedicine.upenn.edu.

Talks

Wednesday, June 24

Focus Session: COREdinates Group: Tools for Basic and Applied Stem Cell Technology

Moderated by CHOP’s Deborah French, this session is focused on “best practices” in reprogramming, gene editing, disease modeling, and biobanking. CHOP’s Hyun Hyung (Claire) An will be presenting at 2:15 PM on Using Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells to Improve Transfusion Therapy in Patients with Sickle Cell Disease.

Thursday, June 25

Thursday gets into the heart (and nerve, kidney, etc.) of the schedule with several thematic concurrent sessions. Skip around to catch these presentations:

Concurrent – Cellular Identity: Cardiac and Muscle

Hao Wu– Decoding Human Cardiac Maturation and Aging with Single-Cell Multi-omics Sequencing (11:35 – 11:43 AM)

Concurrent – Clinical Applications: Early Development and Pluripotency — Interspecies chimeras for stem cell research

Qi Qiu- Massively Parallel, Time-Resolved Single-Cell RNA Sequencing with SCNT-SEQ (11:45 – 11:53 AM)

Concurrent – Modeling Development and Disease: Organoids of Endoderm and Kidney

Paul Gadue– A Patient iPSC Line Reveals the Penetrance of Pancreatic Agenesis Caused by GATA6 Mutations is Modified by a Non-Coding SNP (12:05 – 12:13 PM)

Plenary III: Embryogenesis and Development

Along with other field leaders exploring the developmental principles fundamental to all parts of stem cell biology, hear from IRM Director Ken Zaret at 4:25 PM. His talk is titled, “Prospects for Changing Cell Fate at Will.”

Friday, June 26

Concurrent–“Tissue Stem Cells and Regeneration: Neural”

Make sure to tune in for Pantelis Rompolas’ eye-opening talk on “Tissue Wide Coordination of Corneal Homeostasis Revealed at the Single Stem Cell Level by 2-Photon Live Imaging.” (12:05 – 12:13 PM)

Posters

Poster sessions at this year’s ISSCR are built around the same broad themes as the concurrent sessions.  Stop by for the live chats to ask questions and otherwise interact with this talented bunch.

Session I: Thursday, 25 June: 2:00 PM – 4:00 PM EDT

CI319 – PERTURBATION PANEL PROFILING IDENTIFIES TRANSCRIPTION FACTORS THAT ENHANCE DIRECTED CHANGES OF CELL IDENTITY (Ian Mellis)

CI321 – LINEAGE ANALYSIS OF CELLULAR STATES PREDICTING REPROGRAMMING INTO HUMAN INDUCED PLURIPOTENT STEM CELLS (Naveen Jain)

CA265 – REVEALING THE ‘PRIMED’ CELLULAR STATES UNDERLYING VARIABILITY IN FATES FOLLOWING DIRECTED DIFFERENTIATION (Connie Jiang)

THREE researchers from the Raj lab at Penn will be presenting research into cell identity. Make sure to visit them all to learn about how to search for transcription factors underlying cell type, analyze rare cell states, and find populations of cells primed for different fates.

Session II: Thursday, 25 June: 10:00 PM – 12:00 AM EDT

CA196 – COMPARISON OF MITOCHONDRIAL FUNCTION IN EXCITATORY NEURONS FROM SUBJECTS WITH THE 22Q11.2 DELETION SYNDROME WITH AND WITHOUT SCHIZOPHRENIA (Jianping Li)

CI105 – CELL-TYPE-SPECIFIC TRANSCRIPTOME AND CHROMATIN ACCESSIBILITY DYNAMICS IN A MODEL OF HUMAN HEART DEVELOPMENT AND MATURATION (Peng Hu)

Finish the night with some cell-type specific science that will touch both your head and your heart.

Session IV: Friday, 26 June: 2:00 PM – 4:00 PM EDT

MDD147 – INVESTIGATING THE ROLE OF TBX2 AND TBX3 IN HUMAN ENDODERM DEVELOPMENT USING HUMAN PLURIPOTENT STEM CELLS (Matthew George)

MDD184 – HIPSC-DERIVED METABOLIC CELL TYPES REVEAL INDIVIDUAL-SPECIFIC GLUCOCORTICOID DRUG RESPONSE (Wenxiang Hu)

Come by the second Friday poster session for presentations featuring models of development that take advantage of hiPSCs.

Session VI: Saturday, 27 June: 12:00 – 2:00 PM EDT

MDD256 – NEUROINFLAMMATION AND INTEGRATED STRESS RESPONSE SIGNALING PERSIST IN A HUMAN IPSC TRI-CULTURE MODEL OF HIV INFECTION DESPITE ANTIRETROVIRAL TREATMENT (Eugene Mironets)

Finally, end your poster hopping with a stop by this exploration of an all human tri-culture that recapitulates key features of HIV infection in the central nervous system.

Catch up on our virtual sessions

For now, we still need to keep apart. But that doesn’t mean that we can’t learn and think together.

Over the past few months, the IRM has been hosting virtual sessions for researchers and students of all ages. Because everyone is on different schedules, we have recorded when possible for future viewing.

Below are some links to our Spring 2020 library of recordings. Thank you to all of the presenters and partners who made these possible. Please contact yaroshc@pennmedicine.upenn.edu if you have any questions or ideas for future events. Hope to see you all soon!

Socially Distanced Seminars (SDS)

Want to learn about new techniques or pick up some skills to help your research? Check out our SDS recordings and explore live microscopy techniques with our own Nico Plachta or get an introduction to Adobe Illustrator for scientists with Lexi Voss from the Penn Biomedical Library.

IRM@Home

Do you want to learn about STEM careers and biomedical research? Do you, your family, or your class have questions about what it takes to pursue research in college and beyond? IRM@Home is for you! Scroll through our video archive and hear about cutting edge science and science career paths from actual scientists and educators.

On May 27, 2020 we lost stem cell pioneer John Gearhart to cancer. John will be remembered for his historic contributions & record of advoacy.

Remembering John Gearhart-June 17

On May 27, our colleague and former IRM Director John Gearhart passed away following a long battle with gastric cancer. John was an extremely talented and adventurous scientist, a relentless defender of embryonic stem cell research for the public, and a trusted mentor to the IRM community.

John is best known for leading the research team that first identified and isolated human pluripotent stem cells from primordial germ cells during his time as a Professor at Johns Hopkins. These studies—together with James Thomson’s contemporaneous derivation of pluripotent stem cells from human blastocysts— revolutionized and literally defined what our field could do. Soon after, he became Director of the recently formed IRM, succeeding our co-founders Jon Epstein and Ralph Brinster. I was fortunate to serve as co-Director with John for 5 years and got to know him well.

John’s remarkable scientific achievements were only the beginning of his support for our field. He personally made more than 160 trips to Washington, D.C. to advocate for stem cell research funding. I recall his stories of Congressmen railing against him in public and then approaching him in the hallway afterwards, asking if stem cells could help them or someone in their family. John also never shied away from opportunities to share the importance of stem cell research in the popular press. Though these activities were occasionally risky—John received death threats and needed police protection in the early days of this work—he persevered due to his unwavering confidence in the potential of stem cells.

With one eye always on the future, John strongly promoted efforts to expand the reach of stem cells and regenerative medicine. He was instrumental in founding the International Society for Stem Cell Research (ISSCR), which now serves many thousands of stem cell scientists from around the world. John also ensured that outreach was a core part of the IRM’s mission and championed initiatives to share our science with the public.

We will all miss John Gearhart dearly. The IRM will host a virtual memorial for him on June 17; call information is below.

Ken Zaret

Director, Institute for Regenerative Medicine

 

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