By Don C. Reed

Thursday, March 7 • 6:30 pm – 7:45 pm

Grand Ballroom, Hyatt Regency San Francisco
5 Embarcadero Center, San Francisco, California, USA 94111

Folks, this is something wonderful—and it’s free! Normally, admission to a gathering of these top scientists might cost a thousand bucks or up, especially in an intimate setting where you can meet them one on one—but on March 7th, you are invited as California’s guest.

It will be short, just an hour and a half, but intense, not to be missed. There are three parts to it:

First, twenty minutes to check out the latest research on “people-talk” posters in the back of the room. Normally, scientific posters describing medical breakthroughs are very tough reading, but these will be aimed at people like you and me– the general public.

Four outstanding scientists/doctors/advocates will speak for eight minutes each. They are:

Patient Advocacy
Francisco Prieto, President of the Sacramento-Sierra chapter of the American Diabetes Association

“All of us – scientists, doctors, advocates – don’t just work in some abstract environment. We try to gain knowledge, not just for its own sake, or because we’re curious creatures (though we are), but because we can use that knowledge to improve our lives and prevent suffering…we should all be advocates.”

Eugene P. Brandon, Ph.D., Director, Strategic Relations and Project Management, ViaCyte

“ViaCyte is harnessing the versatility of stem cells to develop an entirely new therapy for insulin-dependent diabetes. The planned product is a credit card-sized medical device, worn under the skin, which contains cells designed to restore the normal blood glucose regulation that patients have lost. If the product works in humans as it does in mice, it may alleviate not only the short term requirements for frequent blood glucose monitoring and insulin rejections, but also the more dire and costly long term aspects of diabetes such as blindness and amputations.”
Spinal Cord Injury
Mark H. Tuszynski, M.D., Ph.D., Professor of Neuroscience, U.C. San Diego

“We have found that neural stem cells have an astonishing ability to send new connections (“axons”) into the injured spinal cord. This represents a new and exciting target for potential therapy of SCI. It is a very different approach when compared to previous efforts to use stem cells to treat SCI.”

Nancy E. Lane, M.D., Professor of Medicine and Rheumatology, U.C. Davis

“To fight osteoporosis, we are bringing the patient’s own stem cells to the surface of the bone to grow new bone.”

After their brief remarks, twenty of America’s best researchers (see below) will be available to you for personal questions. They will not lecture, but walk around the room, meeting you.

Each scientist will have a badge on with the name of the disease—ALZHEIMER’S, for example—and all you have to is walk up, say hello and ask your question.

Here are their names—champions all:


Jeanne Loring, Scripps Institute, Multiple Sclerosis

Claude Bernard, Monash University, Multiple Sclerosis

Heather Schultheiz, Scripps Institute, Cancer and Stem Cells

Ileana Slavin, Scripps Institute, Parkinson’s Disease

Karen Aboody, City of Hope, Brain Cancer

John Zaia, City of Hope, HIV/AIDS

Geoff Symonds, Calimmune, HIV/AIDS

Eugene Brandon, Viacyte, Diabetes

Allan Robins, Viacyte, Diabetes

Dhruv Sareen, Cedars Sinai, Spinal Muscular Atrophy

Dennis Cleg, UC Santa Barbara, Blindness

Roxanne Croze, UC Santa Barbara, Blindness

Joseph Gold, Stanford, Heart Disease

Catriona Jamieson, UC San Diego, Leukemia

Fay Jiang, UC San Diego, Leukemia

Henry Klassen, UC Irvine, Blindness

Jing Yang, UC Irvine, Blindness

Jan Nolta, UC Davis, Huntington’s Disease

Heart Disease (not scheduled yet)

Alzheimer’s (not scheduled yet)

Don Gibbons, CIRM

Kevin McCormack, CIRM

Geoff Lomax, CIRM

Amy Adams, CIRM

Jonathan Thomas, CIRM

Maria Bonneville, CIRM

If you follow stem cell research, you will recognize many of these names. These are the best.

And you have a chance to meet them in person, and ask how stem cells may help defeat diseases you care about the most—because someone you love is affected.

Below is your official invitation from the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine: PLEASE RSVP—it’s easy!

(And for more information, contact Don Gibbons, whose information is below.)


Don C. Reed

Please share the invitation below with family and friends and ask them to register online if they want to attend this opportunity to hear about progress in stem cell research.

We hope you will be our guests at:

Teaming up for cures: Progress and promise in stem cell research

Thursday March 7 • 6:30 pm – 7:45 pm

Grand Ballroom
Hyatt Regency San Francisco
5 Embarcadero Center
San Francisco, California, USA 94111

FREE event. Light snacks will be provided and a cash bar will be available.

Come learn how your state stem cell agency is fueling the development of new therapies for debilitating diseases and conditions like blindness, heart disease, diabetes, cancer and neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease.

California’s stem cell agency, the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM), is hosting an interactive presentation to update you on the latest in stem cell research and to give you a chance to ask scientists about progress in a disease that matters to you.

There will be brief presentations on the power of patient advocacy, and on the progress being made using stem cells to treat diabetes, osteoporosis and spinal cord injury. In addition, before and after these presentations, you can view lay-level posters about progress in several other diseases and chat one-on-one with researchers. The disease they are researching will be boldly identified on their nametags and they will be prepared to take your questions.

The state stem cell agency supports teams of researchers working toward therapies in 40 different diseases. This event will highlight a few of those teams developing stem cell therapies.

***!!! —We request that people planning to attend, RSVP at this web site:



For more information, including Press Opportunities, contact:

Don L. Gibbons

Senior Science and Education Communication Officer

California Institute for Regenerative Medicine

“California’s Stem Cell Agency”

210 King Street

San Francisco, CA94107





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