For more information

Dept. of Dermatology
Mail Code: L468R
Oregon Health & Science University
3181 SW Sam Jackson Park Rd.
Portland, OR 97239

Office: (503) 418-4273
Fax: (503) 418-4266

info(at)
montagnasymposium.org

Molly Kulesz-Martin, Ph.D.
Symposium Director

David Norris, M.D.
Jackie Bickenbach, Ph.D.
Symposium Directors Emeriti

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Montagna 2015: Foundations for breakthrough treatments for skin health

"Stem Cell-based Therapies and Innovative Reprogramming Technologies"

The 2015 Montagna Symposium on the Biology of Skin focused on Harnessing Stem Cells to Reveal Novel Skin Biology and Disease Treatment, with a first-rate program of intriguing and cutting-edge scientific talks put together by Program Chairs Xiao-Jing Wang (University of Colorado Denver) and Valerie Horsley (Yale University) for the 64th annual Symposium (October 15–19, 2015). The Sunday session entitled "Stem Cell-based Therapies and Innovative Reprogramming Technologies," chaired by John McGrath (King's College London), introduced the urgent need for therapies for patients with an inherited blistering skin disease, recessive dystrophic epidermolysis bullosa (RDEB). His work demonstrated the ability of mesenchymal stromal cells (MSCs) to reduce inflammation in damaged skin and have clinical impact on quality of life. Jakub Tolar (University of Minnesota) reported on clinical trials for patients with RDEB after hematopoietic cell transplantation (HCT) and sketched future studies needed to understand which cells contribute. Markus Frank (Harvard University) elucidated properties of dermal cell populations expressing ATP-binding cassette member B5 (ABCB5) relevant to wound healing. The transformative utility of iPS cells was extended in talks by Angela Christiano (Columbia University), on captivating progress in the development of more authentic human 3D skin equivalents, and Anthony Oro (Stanford University), on therapeutic reprogramming of keratinocyte sheet grafts for treatment of monogenic human diseases. Adjunct to this session, Sancy Leachman (Oregon Health & Science University) announced Mole Mapper, a personal mole tracker app that measures and maps the size of moles reliably for individual use and, through a built-in consent process to share de-identified images and data, for fueling research.