Rafael Bejar, MD, PhD

Assistant Professor of Medicine
Division of Hematology and Oncology
UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center
La Jolla, CA

Dr. Rafael Bejar is a physician-scientist at the Moores Cancer Center at UC San Diego in La Jolla, California where his laboratory studies the molecular basis of myelodysplastic syndromes. He obtained his medical and PhD degrees from UC San Diego prior to his medical internship at the University of Chicago. He completed his residency in Internal Medicine at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston where he later served as a Chief Medical Resident. During his fellowship in Hematology and Oncology at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, he worked in laboratory of Dr. Benjamin Ebert on the genetic basis of MDS.

In addition to his research program, Dr. Bejar serves on the molecular prognosis committee of the International Working Group for MDS and is a member of the NCCN clinic guidelines

committee for MDS. At UC San Diego, Dr. Bejar has established an MDS Center of Excellence where he cares for patients, oversees clinical trials, and continues to study the molecular mechanisms that drive the development of MDS.

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John M. Bennett, MD

Professor Emeritus of Medicine
Lab. Medicine and Pathology  Hematology/Oncology
University of Rochester Medical Center
Rochester, NY

Dr. Bennett is Professor Emeritus of Medicine, Pathology and Laboratory Medicine at the University of Rochester Medical Center, in Rochester, New York. He received his undergraduate degree from Harvard University and his medical degree from Boston University. Postgraduate training included an internship at Massachusetts Memorial Hospital, a residency in medicine at Beth Israel Hospital, a fellowship in hematology at Boston City Hospital and Tufts University.

From 1963-1966 he was head of the hematology laboratories at the Beth Israel Hospital in Boston. He served in the USPHS as Head of the diagnostic bone marrow laboratories in the NIH/Clinical Center from 1966-1968.

He was the founder of the French-American- British (FAB) Leukemia Cooperative Group (13 publications). He was the first Clinical Director of the University of Rochester Cancer Center, appointed in 1974; a position he held until 1995. During this period he was the principal investigator of the University of Rochester ECOG membership.

He served as chair of the ASCO Public Relations Committee in the early 1980’s as well as chair of the Education Committee for ASH. He was a founding member of the International Society for Geriatric Oncology.

He is a member of numerous professional societies, including the American Medical Association, American Association for the Advancement of Science, American Association for Cancer Research, American Society for Clinical Oncology, American Society of Hematology and the International Society of Hematology, and was the first chair of The Myelodysplastic Syndromes (MDS) Foundation from 1997-2010. Dr. Bennett has contributed close to 600 publications to the medical literature as well as several books and was Editor-in-Chief of the Leukemia Research Journal from 1993-2013.

His major interests have been in the classification and predictive value of precise description of leukemias.

Rena Buckstein, MD, FRCPC

Head Hematology Site Group
Co-Director of MDS Research Program
Odette Cancer Center
Toronto, ON


  • Graduated Boston University Medical School 1989
  • Rotating Internship Toronto Western Hospital completed 1990
  • Internal Medicine residency University of Toronto:  1991- 1995
  • Hematology residency University of Toronto:  completed 1997
  • Lymphoma/ASCT Fellowship Toronto Sunnybrook Regional Cancer Center (TSRCC):  completed 1999
  • Completed diploma in Clinical Epidemiology University of Toronto 2002

Employment and title:

  • On staff at OCC and Sunnybrook Hospital as hematologist/clinician investigator since 1999
  • Head hematology site group and clinical trials program x 8 years
  • Professor University of Toronto Dept of Medicine
  • Founder and Co-Director of MDS research program

Current Research interests:

  • Clinical trials pertaining to:
    • Novel biologic therapies for hematological malignancies with focus on myelodysplastic syndromes and lymphoma
    • The effects of patient related factors like frailty on quality of life and clinical outcomes in MDS patients independent of disease specific characteristics
    • Cost of care and resource use in MDS.
    • The relationship between clonal hematopoiesis of indeterminate potential (CHIP) and markers of inflammation in aging
    • Optimizing transfusion support of MDS patients.


  • Has received peer reviewed funding from CIHR, CCSRI, U of T, OCRI granting agencies  exceeding 2 million dollars
  • Has chaired national NCIC-CTG clinical trials
  • Principal and local investigator of numerous investigator initiated, cooperative group and pharmaceutically sponsored studies
  • Head of Hematology Clinical trials at the Odette Cancer Center
  • 78 peer reviewed publications (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/?term=buckstein+r)
  • Reviewer for numerous cancer journals
  • Co-founded MDS Research Program at the Odette Cancer Centre
  • Co-director of Canadian national MDS registry

Corey Cutler, MD, MPH, FRCP(C)

Associate Professor of Medicine
Harvard Medical School
Institute Physician
Div. of Hematologic Oncology
Dept of Medical Oncology
Dana-Farber Cancer Institute
Brigham & Women’s Hospital
Medical Director
Stem Cell Transplantation Program
Dana-Farber Cancer Institute
Boston, MA

Corey Cutler, MD, MPH, FRCP(C) is an Associate Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School, and an Institute Physician in the Division of Hematologic Oncology, Department of Medical Oncology at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Boston, MA. He is the Medical Director of the Stem Cell Transplantation Program at Dana-Farber. He is also an Affiliate faculty Member of the Harvard Stem Cell Institute, Cambridge, MA.

Dr. Cutler graduated from McGill University’s Faculty of Medicine, completed a residency in Internal Medicine at the McGill University Health Science Center, and completed fellowship training in hematology, medical oncology, and stem cell transplantation at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. Dr. Cutler earned an MPH degree at the Harvard School of Public Health.

Currently, Dr. Cutler is on the Board of Directors of the American Society of Blood and Marrow Transplantation serving as Treasurer, is the Chair of the CIBMTR Nominating Committee. Dr. Cutler is on the editorial boards for the journals Biology of Blood and Marrow Transplantation, the Journal of Clinical Oncology and the American Journal of Hematology. He has been a contributing author on more than 250 peer-reviewed publications and 25 reviews and book chapters. His research focuses on development of novel methods of acute and chronic graft-vs.-host disease prophylaxis and therapy, umbilical cord blood transplantation, and decision theory in stem cell transplantation.

Mahmoud Elsawy, MD, MSc

Assistant Professor
Division of Hematology
Dalhousie University
Halifax, NS

Dr. Elsawy is an Assistant Professor of Hematology, Dalhousie University, Canada and Affiliate Investigator at Fred Hutch, Seattle. He graduated from Cairo University School of Medicine, Egypt in 2007. He finished his Medicine and Hematology/Oncology training at the National Cancer Institute of Egypt. Following this, he was awarded a scholarship to join Fred Hutch/ University of Washington, Seattle between 2013 and 2016 for a postdoctoral fellowship in Stem cell Transplantation under the mentorship of Dr. Mohamed Sorror. His research focus was around the impact of comorbidities on outcomes of transplant recipients, treatment of AML in the elderly population, and survivorship following BMT. He then joined the Leukemia and Bone Marrow Transplant Program in Vancouver, BC where he completed a clinical fellowship between 2016 and 2018. He joined the BMT Program at Dalhousie University as an Assistant Professor of Hematology and Stem Cell Transplantation in 2018 where he currently focuses on optimization of pre-transplant comorbidities to improve post-transplantation outcomes in the elderly population and on long term follow up and management of chronic graft versus host disease where he established a LTFU clinic for transplant survivors. Additionally, he has special interests in management of myeloid malignancies in older adults and in providing CAR T-cell therapy. Dr. Elsawy is the Lead for establishing a future regional CAR T-cell Therapy Program in Halifax.

Michelle Geddes, MD, FRCPC

Clinical Associate Professor
University of Calgary
Division of Hematology and Hematologic Malignancies
Department of Medicine, Department of Oncology
Calgary, AB

Dr. Geddes is a hematologist and clinical associate professor at the University of Calgary and Tom Baker Cancer Centre in the departments of Medicine and Oncology.  She trained in Internal Medicine at the University of Alberta and in Hematology and Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation at the University of Calgary.  She has an interest in acute leukemias, myelodysplasia, myeloproliferative disorders and aplastic anemia and has a practice in general hematology and hematopoietic cell transplantation.  She is active in clinical trial enrolment and teaching at the medical school and resident level.

Lucy Godley, MD, PhD

Professor of Medicine
Department of Human Genetics
The University of Chicago
Chicago, IL

Dr. Godley developed her deep respect for science through her work in the Marchesi laboratories (Yale), Dr. Don Wiley (Harvard), and Dr. Harold Varmus (University of California, San Francisco and the National Institutes of Health).  She completed her medical training at Northwestern University followed by Internal Medicine/Hematology-Oncology residency/fellowship at The University of Chicago.  After postdoctoral research with Dr. Michelle Le Beau, Dr. Godley joined the faculty at The University of Chicago in 2003.  As a physician-scientist with both research and clinical responsibilities, Dr. Godley seeks to understand disease on a molecular basis and is able to bring that perspective to the care of her patients.  Her laboratory studies the molecular drivers of inherited hematopoietic malignancies and how the distribution of covalently modified cytosines in DNA influences cellular differentiation during hematopoiesis and tumorigenesis. 

Kevin Hay, MD, MSc FRCPC, Clinician Scientist

Terry Fox Laboratory & Leukemia/Bone Marrow Transplant Program of BC
Assistant Professor, Department of Medicine
University of British Columbia
Vancouver, BC

Dr. Kevin Hay is a Clinician Scientist at the Terry Fox Laboratory and Leukemia/Bone Marrow Transplant Program of BC in Vancouver. Dr. Hay received a Master of Science in Immunology at the University of Manitoba (2008), followed by an MD (2011). After completing residency in Internal Medicine (2014) and a clinical fellowship in Haematology (2016) at the University of British Columbia, he was awarded a scholarship through the Clinician Investigator Program of UBC to pursue a postdoctoral fellowship in cellular immunotherapy which he completed at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle Washington under the mentorship of Dr. Cameron Turtle. Dr. Hay’s research focuses on understanding the unique toxicities associated with chimeric antigen receptor T (CAR-T) cells, as well as the development of novel CAR-T cell therapies.

Prof. Dr. Michael Heuser

Clinician-scientist & Attending Physician
Department of Hematology, Hemostasis, Oncology and Stem Cell Transplantation
Hannover Medical School
Hannover, Germany

Prof. Dr Heuser is a Heisenberg chair for hematology and has been awarded an ERC starting grant for personalised nanomedicines for leukemia patients. He works as a clinician-scientist and attending physician in the Department of Hematology, Hemostasis, Oncology and Stem Cell Transplantation at Hannover Medical School, Hannover, Germany. He studied medicine in Berlin and Heidelberg and trained as a postdoctoral fellow at the Terry Fox Laboratory in Vancouver. His research focuses on the pathogenesis of acute myeloid leukemia and myelodysplastic syndromes and he establishes new treatment modalities in patient-derived xenotransplantation models with the aim of clinical translation (small molecules, RNA therapeutics, immune therapies). Dr Heuser has been a clinical investigator in more than 30 clinical trials. He has received several awards like the Artur-Pappenheim Award of the German Society of Hematology and Oncology and the Johann-Georg Zimmermann Research Award.

Aly Karsan, MD, FRCPC

Medical Director, Centre for Clinical Genomics, Michael Smith Genome Sciences Centre, BC Cancer
Professor, Pathology & Laboratory Medicine, University of British Columbia
Vancouver, BC

Aly Karsan is Professor of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, University of British Columbia, and Medical Director of the the Centre of Clinical Genomics at BC Cancer. He received his MD from Queen’s University at Kingston, completed his residency in Hematological Pathology at the University of British Columbia, followed by a research fellowship at the University of Washington in Seattle. His research interests focus on disease progression and resistance in the myeloid malignancies. Research in his lab is supported by grants from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, Canadian Cancer Society Research Institute, Genome Canada, Genome BC and the Terry Fox Research Institute.

Austin G. Kulasekararaj, MD, FRCPC

Consultant Haematologist
King’s College Hospital
Honorary Clinical Lecturer, King’s College London
London, England

Austin Kulasekararaj is a Consultant Haematologist working at King’s College Hospital under the myeloid, allogeneic transplant and bone marrow failure services. He also leads the King’s National PNH service. He did his graduate and post-graduate training in internal medicine in India. He subsequently completed his medical and specialist haematology training at King’s College Hospital, London.

His special interest is bone marrow failure syndromes- aplastic anaemia, PNH and myelodysplastic syndrome. His research interest is in molecular pathogenesis of myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS), especially the role of TP53 and other somatic mutations.

He has contributed to key publications in the field of molecular and immunological aspects of bone marrow failures, especially MDS. He was a Leukaemia and Lymphoma Research foundation (LLR) and British Society of Haematology (BSH) senior clinical research fellow.

Dr. Kulasekararaj is a member of BSH, MDS NCRN working group and EBMT Severe Aplastic Anaemia Working Party (SAAWP).

Wendy Lam, B Sc(Pharm), MD, FRCP(C)

Hematologist / Medical Oncologist
Burnaby Hospital Regional Cancer Centre
Director of BC Community Oncology Trialists
Burnaby, BC

Dr. Wendy Lam is a hematologist and medical oncologist at the Burnaby Hospital Regional Cancer Centre.

She received her B.Sc(Pharmacy) at Dalhousie University and her MD from University of British Columbia. She then completed her Internal Medicine residency at UBC and Hematology fellowship at McMaster University.

She is the Director of the British Columbia Community Oncology Trialists, which is a collaborative group of oncologists and hematologists involved in clinical research.

Her other interests include education of patients through meeting with patient groups. She has also been instrumental in organizing meetings for continued medical education.

Brian Leber, MD, BSc, FRCPC

Professor, Medicine
Hematology and Thromboembolism
McMaster University
Hamilton, ON

Dr. Brian Leber is a clinical hematologist and Professor of Medicine based at McMaster University Medical Centre and the Juravinski Cancer Centre with an interest in the pathophysiology of leukemia/MDS and investigational new drug trials. As an Associate Scientist at the Sunnybrook Research Institute, he collaborates with Dr. David Andrews on studies investigating basic biochemical mechanisms in apoptosis. He is also a member of the Hamilton Regional Laboratory Medicine Program and in that capacity the Director of the Molecular Hematology Laboratory. He graduated from McGill Medical School, did internal medicine at McGill, and Hematology Training at McMaster followed by a research fellowship at the Royal Free Hospital School of Medicine (University of London, UK).

Heather Leitch, MD, PhD, FRCPC

Hematologist, St. Paul’s Hospital
Clinical Professor
University of British Columbia
Vancouver, BC

Dr. Leitch completed a PhD in Microbiology (leukemia stem cell research) and medical school at UBC, where she trained in Internal Medicine.  She completed a Hematology fellowship at McGill University, and course requirements toward a master’s degree in Epidemiology and Biostatistics. She completed post-fellowship training with the Lymphoma Tumour Group at the BC Cancer Agency and currently holds the position of Clinical Professor at UBC.

Dr. Leitch is a member of the Hematology/Oncology group at St. Paul’s Hospital and actively participates in research projects and clinical trials with a focus on hematologic malignancies.  She is currently the Director of the Hematology/Oncology research office at St. Paul’s.

Recent journal reviews, speaking engagements and publications have focused on the treatment of: iron overload in patients with myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS) and other acquired bone marrow failure syndromes; HIV-associated lymphoma; monoclonal B-cell lymphocytosis; and relapsed/refractory myeloma, MDS, and lymphoma.

Alan F. List, MD

President and Chief Executive Officer
Moffitt Cancer Center
Tampa, FL

Dr. Alan List is the President and Chief Executive Officer of Moffitt Cancer Center in Tampa, FL.

Dr. List is internationally recognized for his many contributions in the development of novel, more effective treatment strategies for myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS) and acute myeloid leukemia (AML). His pioneering work led to the development of lenalidomide (Revlimid®) from the laboratory to clinical trials, which went on to receive fast-track designation from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and approval for the treatment of patients with MDS and multiple myeloma. This work transformed the natural history of MDS from a premalignant condition that progressed to malignancy requiring aggressive treatment to a condition managed in the outpatient setting with oral agents.

Harold Olney, MD, FRCP(C)

Assistant Professor of Medicine
Université de Montréal
Chief Department of Hematology-Transfusion Medicine
Centre Hospitalier de l’Université de Montréal
Montréal, QC

A native Montrealer, Dr. Olney pursued undergraduate training in immunology at McGill University prior to completing medical school and hematology training at the same institution. He completed his specialty training in medical oncology at the University of Montreal. A short stay in the Maritimes treating hematology-oncology patients at the Moncton Regional Cancer Center was followed by several years in postgraduate training in cancer cytogenetics, the study of chromosomal changes in disease, at the University of Chicago.

Upon completion of his fellowship in Chicago, Dr. Olney assumed an assistant professorship at the University of Montreal at the Centre Hospitalier de l’Université de Montréal (CHUM) based at the Notre-Dame Hospital site. He is now chief of the department of hematology – transfusion medicine and the scientific director of the cancer cytogenetics laboratory as well as an attending hematologist and oncologist. He is also currently coordinator of the outpatient hematology clinics and the site representative for the adult hematology residency training program and the NCIC hematology group.

Eric Padron, MD

Associate Member
Malignant Hematology
Chemical Biology and Molecular Medicine Program
H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center and Research Institute
Tampa, FL

Eric Padron is an associate member at the H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center. He is a physician scientist whose research focus is on the development of novel therapeutics for myeloid malignancies with a focus on chronic myelomonocytic leukemia. His laboratory has successfully translated several preclinical therapeutic concepts to clinical trial and he has published more than 90 peer reviewed manuscripts in this area.

Dr. Uwe Platzbecker, Prof. med.

Medical Clinic I
Hematology and Cell Therapy
University Hospital Leipzig
Leipzig, Germany

After graduating from medical school in 1996, Prof. Platzbecker first started medical training in heart surgery. Since 1998, he has been working at the Department of Hematology and Oncology at the University Hospital “Carl Gustav Carus” in Dresden, Germany. Between 2001 and 2003 he completed a 2-year postdoctoral fellowship provided by the Humboldt-foundation at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle, USA. From 2012 to 2018 Prof. Platzbecker held a position of Professor of Hematology at the University Hospital “Carl Gustav Carus” in Dresden and was the head of the section of Hematology as well as chair of the medical ethics committee of the TU Dresden. In 2015 he was appointed as Transcampus Professor of Hematology at the Faculty of Life Sciences and medicine at King’s College London.

Since October 2018 Prof. Platzbecker is heading the Hematology program at the University Hospital in Leipzig as Director of the Medical Clinic I, Hematology and Cell Therapy.

Prof. Platzbecker’s clinical expertise lies in hematological malignancies with a focus on MDS and AML. The main scientific interest involves the translational exploration of innovative treatment options for these patients involving the use of allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation. He is a member of the steering committee of the SAL study and German MDS group. In 2012 Prof. Platzbecker has co-founded the European Myelodysplastic Syndromes Cooperative Group (EMSCO).

Dr. David Sanford, MD, FRCPC

Clinical Assistant Professor
Vancouver General Hospital
Vancouver, BC

Dr. David Sanford joined the Leukemia/BMT Program of BC in September 2015.  He previously completed training in Hematology at the University of Western Ontario.  Following this, he undertook a Leukemia Fellowship at MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, Texas.  He has interests in clinical research in acute myeloid leukemia, including the development of novel therapies as well as the role of minimal/measurable residual disease in guiding treatment.

Andre C Schuh, BSc, MD, FRCPC

Associate Professor, University of Toronto
Staff Physician, Princess Margaret Cancer Centre

Bio to be posted shortly

April Shamy, MD, CM, FRCPC

Associate Professor, Department of Medicine, McGill University
Member, Department of Oncology, McGill University
Attending Staff Member, Division of Hematology, Department of Medicine,
Sir Mortimer B. Davis-Jewish General Hospital
Montréal, QC

Attending Staff Member, Division of Hematology,
Department of Medicine, Sir Mortimer B. Davis-Jewish General Hospital
Associate Professor, Department of Medicine, McGill University
Member, Department of Oncology, McGill University

Medical School

McGill University, Montreal, QC

McGill University affiliated hospitals, Montreal, QC
Hammersmith Hospital, London, England


McGill University affiliated hospitals, Montreal, QC
Montreal Red Cross, Montreal, QC
University of Texas, M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX

Clinical Specialties
Haematologic Malignancies

Research Interests
Clinical trials in malignant hematology.

David Steensma, MD, FACP

Associate Professor of Medicine
Harvard Medical School
Institute Physician
Adult Leukemia Program, Div. of Hematological Malignancies, Department of Medical Oncology
Dana-Farber Cancer Institute
Boston, MA

Dr. David Steensma is Institute Physician at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute (DFCI) in the Adult Leukemia Program, Division of Hematological Malignancies, Department of Medical Oncology, and holds the rank of Associate Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School. He directs the Center for Prevention of Progression at DFCI for patients with clonal hematopoiesis and other hematological malignancy precursor conditions, and is the clinical director of the Regenerative Medicine and Stem Cell Biology course at Harvard Medical School.

After undergraduate study in Physics and Astronomy at Calvin College in Michigan, he attended the University of Chicago Pritzker School of Medicine and completed clinical training in internal medicine, hematology and medical oncology at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota. Following post-doctoral work on the molecular genetics of acquired thalassemia in myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS) at the Weatherall Institute of Molecular Medicine of the University of Oxford, England, he joined the hematology consulting staff of Mayo Clinic where he ran a laboratory focused on MDS and served as associate fellowship program director before moving to Boston in 2009.

Dr. Steensma’s clinical and research focus is clonal hematopoiesis and development of novel therapies for myelodysplastic syndromes and marrow failure disorders. He has led a number of multicenter trials and has more than 400 peer-reviewed publications. He has served as a member of the Food and Drug Administration’s Oncology Drug Advisory Committee, section editor for Journal of Clinical Oncology, hematology exam committee for the American Board of Internal Medicine, education program chair for the American Society of Hematology (ASH), and senior editor of the ASH Self Assessment Program (ASH-SAP).

A.A. van de Loosdrecht, MD, PhD

Professor of Hematology
Department of Hematology
Amsterdam UMC
location VU University Medical Center
Cancer Center Amsterdam
Amsterdam, Netherlands

A.A. van de Loosdrecht (born: 09-10-1963) passed Medical School (cum laude) in 1989 at the VU University Medical Center in Amsterdam (VUmc), The Netherlands. After a 4th years scientific laboratory training in cell biology, immunology and hematology he received his PhD graduation (cum laude) in 1993 at the department of Hematology (VUmc) on the thesis; ‘Monocyte mediated cytotoxicity in acute myeloid leukemia; Mechanisms and clinical implications’. In 1995 he graduated in Immunology (Msc). From 1993-1998 he followed clinical training in Internal Medicine followed by a fellowship in hematology (Department of Internal Medicine and Hematology at the Groningen University Medical Center, Groningen, Netherlands). From 2000, he is a staff member, since 2009 an associate professor and since 2012 a full professor of hematology at the department of Hematology, Amsterdam UMC, location VUmc, Amsterdam.
At the VUmc he is program leader of clinical trial WG of Cancer Center Amsterdam. His particular scientific experiences and interests are on translational hematology. He is projectleader/principal investigator of the preclinical and translational immunotherapy programs in myeloid leukemia (AML) and myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS). The major research lines focus on the development of leukemic dendritic cell vaccines for active specific immunization in patients with minimal residual disease (MRD) in AML and MDS. Since 2016 he is coordinator of HORIZON2020, AML-VACCiN program dealing with Dendritic Cell vaccination in AML and PI of the clinical program. He is project leader/principle investigator of clinical (translational) programs dealing with the treatment of low and high risk risk MDS and principle investigator of the first HOVON trial (HOVON89) in lower risk MDS dealing with the role of lenalidomide in non-del(5q) MDS. Regarding MDS, research focuses on the implementation of flow cytometry in the diagnosis, prognostication and monitoring of MDS. As such he is participant of the HORIZON2020 MDS-Right program. He is chair of the working group MDS of the Dutch Society of Cytometry on the implementation of flowcytometry in MDS and initiated a platform within the ELN on the implementation of flowcytometry in MDS in Europe. In addition, he is chair of the Database Sharing Committee of the International Working Group for Prognosis of MDS (IWG-PM) who developed the revised-IPSS for MDS.

Francesca Vinchi, PhD

Head of Iron Research Program
Lindsley F. Kimball Research Institute
New York Blood Center
New York, USA

Dr. Francesca Vinchi received her master degree in Molecular Biotechnology in 2007 at the University of Turin, Italy. She works in the ‘iron field’ since approximately 15 years. She started as an undergraduate student and later on as a PhD student (PhD in Biomedical Science and Human Oncology) in the laboratory of Prof. Emanuela Tolosano at the Molecular Biotechnology Center in Turin, Italy, in 2003. During her PhD, Dr. Vinchi got a broad expertise in the field of heme metabolism and heme-mediated oxidative injury. In 2012 she defended her PhD thesis entitled “Hemopexin and FLVCR1a promote liver heme detoxification and counteract heme-driven oxidative injury”. From 2013 to 2017, Dr. Vinchi performed her postdoctoral studies in the lab of Prof. Martina Muckenthaler, supported by two renown postdoctoral fellowships provided by the Medical Faculty of the University of Heidelberg. Dr. Vinchi’s expertise lies in the field of heme and iron metabolism, with a focus on the mechanisms of heme/iron-driven vascular damage, inflammation and oxidative stress in hemolytic and iron overload diseases.

Dr. Vinchi is currently Assistant Professor and Head of the Iron Research Program at the New York Blood Center, New York. Her line of research is focused on the investigation of the impact of iron overload on vascular function, immune response and disease severity in iron-related (hemochromatosis) and hematologic disorders (sickle cell disease, thalassemia, MDS). Her lab is interested in defining the beneficial and/or detrimental effect of transfusions and iron preparations in anemias. The main scientific interests of the Program are to study the pathophysiological relevance of heme/iron detoxification systems and to explore the therapeutic effect of the administration of heme scavengers, iron chelators and modulators of iron metabolism in conditions of heme/iron overload.

Dr. Vinchi is authored several high impact publications, elucidating the detrimental effect of heme/iron overload and the importance of detoxification systems (Vinchi et al., Am. J. Pathol. 2008; Chiabrando et al., J Clin Invest. 2012; Vinchi et al., Circulation 2013; Vinchi et al., Gastroenterology 2014; Vinchi et al., Blood 2016; Costa da Silva et al. 2017, Ingoglia et al. 2017; P, Petrillo et al. 2018; Tangudu et al 2018).

Dr. Vinchi was awarded the young investigator prize by the International BioIron Society in September 2016 (IBIS Meeting 2016), for her dedication, commitment and contribution to the field area of iron homeostasis as a young researcher. She was also awarded the Young EHA Best Abstract Award at the European Hematology Association meeting 2017, the Early career biologist award at the 6th International ESH Conference on Myelodysplastic Syndromes (2018), several best oral presentations (BioIron 2015, EAS 2016, Heme-oxygenase 2014) and ASH abstract achievement awards. Her expertise in the field of hematology and transfusion is testified by a number of lectures and podium presentations she has been invited in international conferences, including a recent plenary lecture at the Presidential Symposium of the European Hematology Association meeting 2018.

Eunice S. Wang, MD

Chief, Leukemia Service
Professor of Oncology, Department of Medicine
Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Institute
Buffalo, NY

Eunice S. Wang, MD, is Chief of the Leukemia Service and Professor of Oncology in the Department of Medicine at Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center and faculty in the Jacob School of Medicine, University of Buffalo, Buffalo, NY. Dr. Wang earned her medical degree from the Keck (University of Southern California) School of Medicine and completed residency in internal medicine at Yale-New Haven Hospital followed by hematology-oncology fellowship training at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, NY, NY. Dr. Wang maintains an active clinical practice with an active clinical trial portfolio in acute leukemias and myeloid malignancies. She also directs a translational laboratory focused on preclinical studies of novel agents targeting the marrow microenvironment for leukemia therapy. She is the recipient of an NIH Cancer Clinical Investigator Team Leadership Award (CCITLA) and an American Cancer Society Mentored Research Scholar award. Dr. Wang currently serves as Vice-Chair of the the National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) Clinical Practice treatment guidelines panel for Acute Myeloid Leukemia and is also a member of the NCCN Acute Lymphocytic Leukemia panel.

Jean C.Y. Wang, MD, PhD, FRCPC

Clinician Scientist & Staff Hematologist
University Health Network
Affiliate Scientist, Princess Margaret Cancer Centre
Toronto, ON

Jean Wang is a Clinician Scientist and Staff Hematologist at the University Health Network in Toronto, and an Affiliate Scientist at Princess Margaret Cancer Centre. Through the use of xenotransplantation models of AML, Dr. Wang studies the biology of the leukemia stem cells (LSC) that underlie therapy resistance and relapse, and evaluates the efficacy of novel anti-leukemia agents against LSCs, with parallel development of drug response biomarkers for patient stratification in clinical trials. Her group recently developed a robust 17-gene LSC signature (LSC17 score) that is strongly prognostic and predicts therapy response in newly-diagnosed AML patients. The LSC17 score is now available as a clinical assay in the Advanced Molecular Diagnostic Lab at Princess Margaret. This stem cell-based tool will aid in upfront management decisions and enable more rational enrollment of high-risk patients in clinical trials. Another major unmet need in AML is a lack of effective therapies against LSCs. Dr. Wang is currently using stemness-based approaches to understand mechanisms underlying drug resistance and identify new drugs with activity against LSCs.