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Featured in this Issue
2020 ISCT Career Achievement Award
Presented to Dr. Malcolm K. Brenner, MD, PhD, FRCP, FRCPath
ISCT 2020 Paris Virtual
Unexpected Silver Linings (Times Two)
ISCT Leadership Spotlight
A Reflection by Lizette Cabellero
ISCT Member Spotlight
Featuring Don Siegel

Member News
News & Press Releases
ISCT Community Calendar
ISCT Career Center
ISCT Webinars Program
ISCT Volunteer Center
Telegraft Hub
Regular Updates
Cytotherapy® Corner
(May and June Issue hot topics)
ISCT Early Stage Professionals Series
(Mentoring, Quality Assurance, Regulatory Affairs, Networking)
ISCT Lab Practices Committee Snapshot

(Staff Recruitment, Training, Retention, Clean Room Space Utilization, Resource Management)
FACT Report
(Statement on Anti-Racism, New Quality Management Series, COVID-19 Updates)

Global Regulatory Surveillance
Australia and New Zealand Watchdog
®
(Regulation of stem cell treatments, TGA efforts to support COVID-19 responses)
Europe Watchdog®
(Updates from CAT, EDQM, EMA and ICH)
North America Watchdog®
(COVID-19 Updates, FDA Updated Approvals, Guidelines)

From the President's Desk
by Bruce Levine, PhD

New ISCT President Bruce Levine's inaugural column states that inclusive diversity is a core value of the society, and that optimal development of the field and the society lies in our interdependence and the support of our all of our colleagues regardless of race, ethnicity, gender identity, or sexual orientation.
 
From the Editors:
In the Coronavirus World, Science is…
by Joaquim Vives, PhD

In this month’s editorial, Joaquim Vives, Telegraft Contributing Editor, discusses science as the only tool in our hands that can help us to understand the mechanisms of action of SARS-CoV-2 and develop therapies to improve the health of COVID-19 patients, while vaccines are being produced to immunize the world population. 

2020 ISCT Career Achievement Award
Presented to
Dr. Malcolm K. Brenner, MD, PhD, FRCP, FRCPath
Dr. Malcolm K. Brenner received the 2020 ISCT Career Achievement Award for his groundbreaking work in transplantation, gene therapy and T cell therapies, and his mentorship of multiple leaders in the field, and for his continuing contributions to the field of cell and gene therapy
 



 
Dr. Brenner holds his Career Achievement Award
ISCT 2020 Paris Virtual launched to spectacular success, helping to break numerous ISCT records and to push our mission forward despite turbulent times. Though the LIVE program has concluded, all presentations and scientific content are recorded and fully accessible until May 26, 2021!

If you weren't there, don't worry - you didn't miss out.

Registrations are still active and can be accessed by clicking the banner above!


Click below to view a recap of our meeting, including metrics and media highlights. 
 
ISCT 2020 Paris Virtual:
Unexpected Silver Linings (Times Two)
by Michele W. Sugrue, M.S., MT(ASCP)SBB


When ISCT 2020 went virtual, the prospect to attend became an unanticipated opportunity for those unable to travel to Paris. This article recounts highlights of Day 1 LIVE Plenary Sessions and discusses the benefits of yearlong access through the on demand virtual platform.
 

As an international society, ISCT is in a unique position to communicate the response to the COVID19 pandemic by scientific, medical, and commercial professionals in the cell and gene therapy community. The incredible advancements in basic and applied research, clinical treatment, scientific innovation, and biotechnology since our Society’s founding in 1992, gives us hope that the cell and gene therapy community will contribute substantially to the resolution of the present crisis. To help hasten that day, Telegraft will continue to spotlight special features and publications from members, and maintain a point of connection on social media:

Reports from the Front Lines #ISCTTogether is a conduit of information on both social media and our Telegraft site to share experiences from regions of the world facing different stages of the ongoing pandemic. #ISCTTogether is also a means to reach out to colleagues around the world to support them professionally and personally through sharing experiences, stories, reflections, obstacles, solutions, moments of inspiration, and more. We highly encourage your participation and welcome submissions of all forms! Please consider using either platform to share with your colleagues internationally during this unprecedented time. Send your contribution to isct@isctglobal.org or visit the Telegraft Hub.

We will continue these activities in the Telegraft and Reports from the Front Lines #ISCTTogether until such time as we feel they are no longer needed. We hope that is soon.
Click here to access COVID-19 Research Spotlight
ISCT Leadership Spotlight: 
Lizette Caballero, MLS(ASCP)CM (United States)

 
Lizette Caballero recounts how her participation in ISCT and FACT have been key to success in her professional development. She describes the challenges and rewards of her career from an early interest in science inspired by a gift of a toy microscope, to her beginning career in new field of bone marrow transplantation laboratory stem cell processing, to its eventual evolution into the more sophisticated current day field of cellular therapy. 
 

Massimo Dominici, Lizette Caballero & Bruce Levine at ISCT NA 2019 in Madison, WI.

 
Data Audit Initiative from FACT and CIBMTR
by Heather Conway, CQA(ASQ)

FACT has set up a collaboration with CIBMTR (Center for International Blood and Marrow Transplant Research) which resulted in a joint process of data audit that reduces the burden on transplant centers of duplicative audits and inspections while facilitating improvements in data management and quality of data. The collaborative Data Audit Plan, which utilizes a joint FACT-CIBMTR  Data Audit, began in 2017 and incorporates the strengths of both FACT and CIBMTR organizational expertise, while it minimizes duplication, improves data quality, and increases attention and resources to data management through more significant consequences. 
 
Featured Member:
Don Siegel, MD, PhD

 
Our member spotlight in this issue focuses on Don Siegel, a distinguished colleague based at the University of Pennsylvania. Learn about his insights on the connections between transfusion medicine and cell and gene therapy, and draw upon Don's advice to those just starting out in the field!
 
Voices From the Blogosphere and Twitterverse: #ShutDownSTEM and #WhiteCoatsForBlackLives
by Conrad Russell Y. Cruz, MD, PhD


Telegraft Associate Editor C. Russell Y. Cruz summarizes the landscape of social activism in North America over recent weeks, with a focus to dialogue that has brought in Science and Medicine professionals through the #ShutdownSTEM and #WhiteCoatsForBlackLives social media campaigns. Read for an overview of organizational and individual calls to action, and coverage on the topic from press sources.
  
ISCT Lab Practices Committee (LPC) Snapshot:
Maintaining Excellence in a High Volume Academic Cell Therapy Production Facility

by Anne Lamontagne, MS

An overview of techniques used in a high-volume academic cell therapy production facility. Methods include improved training methods, staff retention initiatives, effective space utilization and production schedule refinements that can be adopted by academic cell therapy facilities to optimize staffing, reduce costs and increase efficiencies, thereby increasing production capacity and patient clinical trial enrollment.     
 
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Here Comes TED!

The popularity and promise of regenerative medicine made the field an obvious choice for TED talks. TED conference talks, and its many offspring (TEDx, TEDMed, TED Women, TED Youth, etc.) were developed to highlight current ideas and synergies in Technology, Entertainment, and Design. This mission was later expanded to include science and other cultural issues. Subject matter experts gave polished and slickly produced talks which were advertised as "ideas worth spreading" that were available for free on the internet. The talks were in a standard 18 minute talk format aimed at an audience of either experts in other fields, or the layman. The talks are topical, and often cleverly titled, passionate, and quite entertaining. While the difficulty of reducing complex scientific principles to easily understandable “sound bites” is a challenge, the Telegraft editors believe that we can all benefit from hearing how our colleagues explain our fascinating field to those outside it.

The first of our series was the highly instructive TEDMED talk given by Dr. Carl June on CAR-T therapy development that was published in the
April Telegraft. Dr June is one of the subjects of the Cytotherapy series Talking with Giants which was presented in that issue of Telegraft. In this June issue we will highlight a talk given by Dr. Crystal Ruff on stem cell biology.

If you have given a TED talk on any of its platforms about regenerative medicine or any of the areas of concern of ISCT, or listened or watched one that you think would be of interest to the audience of the Telegraft, please contact the editors. We would like to compile a library for the benefit of ISCT members.



TEDx LondonBusinessSchool with Crystal Ruff
Changing the future with stem cells

In this TEDx talk focused on stem cell biology Dr. Crystal Ruff explains what stem cells are, what they are currently being used for, and the potential they hold for the future, including how stem cells can change the way we treat diseases. 

Click here to view the TEDx LondonBusinessSchool with Crystal Ruff.
Upcoming Webinars
Telegraft Editorial Board

SENIOR EDITOR
Nancy H. Collins, PhD
ASSOCIATE EDITOR
Russell Cruz, MD
JUNIOR ASSOCIATE EDITORS
Satyam Arora, MD
Rounak Dubey, MBBS, MD


CONTRIBUTING EDITORS 
Shyam Bhakta, MD, MBA
Ashley Krull, BSc, PhD
Anne Lamontagne, MSc
Janet Macpherson, PhD 
Lynn O'Donnell, PhD 
Michele Sugrue, MT 
Wouter Van't Hof, PhD
Joaquim Vives, PhD
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