Immune to Cancer: The CRI Blog




Four CRI Scientists Elected to AACR 2024 Class of Fellows 

The American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) has announced its new class of Fellows of the AACR Academy. The AACR Academy’s purpose is to honor scientists whose scientific contributions are responsible for considerable progress in the fight against cancer. CRI is proud to recognize one associate director and three members of our Scientific Advisory Council (SAC) that have been selected as members of this prestigious class for their remarkable efforts and discoveries in cancer immunotherapy research. 

Fred W. Alt, PhD, (Boston Children’s Hospital & Harvard Medical School)  

Dr. Alt is the director of the Program in Cellular and Molecular Medicine at Boston Children’s Hospital, a professor of Genetics at Harvard Medical School, an investigator of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, and a member of CRI’s SAC. The AACR selected Dr. Alt as a fellow for his groundbreaking work regarding how genomic rearrangements occur, specifically regarding cancer development and progression. He is also the namesake of CRI’s Frederick W. Alt Award for New Discoveries in Immunology that is presented annually to a former CRI postdoctoral fellow in recognition of outstanding success in academia or industry for research that has had a major impact in the field of immunology. 

Miriam Merad, MD, PhD (Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai) 

Dr. Merad is the Mount Sinai endowed chair in cancer immunology and the director of the Precision Immunology Institute at Icahn School of Medicine (PrIISM) at Mount Sinai in New York, co-leads the cancer immunology program at The Mount Sinai Tisch Cancer Institute, is the director of the Mount Sinai Human Immune Monitoring Center (HIMC), and is a member of CRI’s SAC. Her research has illuminated the roles of myeloid cells in inflammation and tumorigenesis, forging a path for the development of targeted therapies for myeloid cells in cancer and inflammatory diseases. 

Padmanee Sharma, MD, PhD (The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center) 

Dr. Sharma is a professor in the departments of Genitourinary Medical Oncology and Immunology, scientific director for the immunotherapy platform at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, co-director of Parker Institute for Cancer Immunotherapy at MD Anderson Cancer Center, and a member of CRI’s SAC. The AACR chose Dr. Sharma to join its class of fellows because of her work leading to the development of immune checkpoint therapies and vaccines, and her discoveries of novel alternative checkpoints determining resistance and response to immunotherapy treatment.  

E. John Wherry, PhD (University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine) 

Dr. Wherry is the Barbara and Richard Schiffrin President’s Distinguished Professor, chair of the Department of Systems Pharmacology, Translational Therapeutics in the Perelman School of Medicine, director of the UPenn Institute for Immunology, and a CRI SAC associate director. His heralded research discoveries have established an understanding of the genetic and epigenetic control mechanisms that determine T-cell exhaustion. Additionally, Dr. Wherry identified the molecular mechanisms underlying PDL-1 blockade, which encouraged the development of multiple immunotherapies, including several FDA-approved immune checkpoint inhibitor therapies. 

To read the full list of new fellows, go to: AACR Announces Newly Elected 2024 Class of Fellows of the AACR Academy

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