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2018 Till & McCulloch Award Winner – Dr. Fabio Rossi

By October 12, 2018October 30th, 2018No Comments

Celebrating Canadian Scientific Excellence

The Till & McCulloch Award
In 2005, the Stem Cell Network inaugurated the Till & McCulloch Award in honour of Canadian scientists James Till and Ernest McCulloch (pictured), whose pioneering work established the field of stem cell research. The Till & McCulloch Award is presented annually to one researcher in Canada in recognition of his or her exceptional contributions to global stem cell research in that year.

Researchers are nominated through a public process, and the Selection Committee chooses the awardee based on what is determined to be the year’s most influential peer-reviewed article by a Canadian stem cell researcher.

The award is presented at the annual Till & McCulloch Meetings and is accompanied by the delivery of the Till & McCulloch Lecture.

2018 Till & McCulloch Award Winner – Dr. Fabio Rossi

Dr. Fabio Rossi has been named winner of the 2018 Till & McCulloch Award for his research identifying a key mechanism driving muscle repair. The annual Award recognizes the most impactful stem cell research paper originating from a Canadian lab in the past year. Dr. Rossi will be presenting the Award lecture at the upcoming Till & McCulloch Meetings, November 12-14 in Ottawa, based on his paper published in Cell Stem Cell entitled, “Inhibition of Methyltransferase Setd7 Allows the In Vitro Expansion of Myogenic Stem Cells with Improved Therapeutic Potential.”

In the paper, Dr. Rossi and his team at the University of British Columbia (UBC) provide the first evidence that a protein known as Setd7 is a critical actor in the pathway that controls the expansion of muscle stem cells. Using a drug to regulate this protein, Dr. Rossi’s team was able to expand the number of muscle stem cells and show they could improve muscle function when implanted into mouse models of muscular dystrophy. The same approach was used to improve the expansion of human muscle stem cells in the lab, opening the way for future therapeutic applications.

“I’m extremely honoured to have been selected for this award and to be included among such a distinguished list of Canadian scientists,” said Dr. Rossi, a professor in the Department of Medical Genetics at UBC. “Drs. Till and McCulloch are role models in stem cell research and I look forward to acknowledging their pioneering work by giving a lecture in their name.”

Past Recipients of the Till & McCulloch Award

Derek van der Kooy, University of Toronto (2005)
John E. Dick, Ontario Institute for Cancer Research (2006)
Connie Eaves, University of British Columbia (2007)
Janet Rossant, SickKids Research Institute (2008)
Guy Sauvageau, University of Montreal (2009)
Timothy Caulfield, University of Alberta (2010)
Aaron Schimmer, University Health Network (2012)
Peter Zandstra, University of Toronto (2013)
Michael Rudnicki, Ottawa Hospital Research Institute (2014)
Timothy Kieffer, University of British Columbia (2015)
Molly Shoichet, University of Toronto (2016)
Harold Atkins, Ottawa Hospital Research Institute (2017)