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NIH Director’s Wednesday Afternoon Lecture Series

Upcoming Lectures

The two faces of the IL-15- Janus Kinase-Stat system: implications for the immunotherapy of autoimmune diseases and cancer

November 29, 2017 - 3:00pm to 4:00pm
Thomas A. Waldmann, M.D., National Cancer Institute

Dr. Walmann will present the annual William Paul lecture. Dr. Waldmann defined the IL-2 receptor alpha and beta subunits using the daclizumab antibody he discovered, an antibody that is approved by the FDA. He co-discovered IL-15 and performed the first in-human clinical trial with this agent in patients with malignancy. Furthermore, Waldmann defined molecular abnormalities of the common gamma cytokine, Jak/Stat signaling pathway in HTLV-1 associated adult T-cell lymphoma and translated this discovery with a trial of a Jak inhibitor in patients with this disorder.

Cellular communication: how cells control who they’re talking to and what they’re saying

December 6, 2017 - 3:00pm to 4:00pm
Michael B. Elowitz, Ph.D., California Institute of Technology

In multicellular organisms, a handful of intercellular communication pathways, such as Notch and BMP, play an outside role in controlling cell fate decisions. While we have much information about the specific molecules and interactions that comprise these pathways, we often understand little about the particular signal processing behaviors each pathway provides. We have been developing a ‘build-to-understand’ approach to this problem, reconstructing or re-wiring these pathways using synthetic biology approaches, and analyzing their dynamic behaviors at the level of individual cells.

Translational fidelity and neurodegeneration

December 13, 2017 - 3:00pm to 4:00pm
Susan L. Ackerman, Ph.D., University of California, San Diego

The goal of the Ackerman laboratory is to define the molecular pathways necessary to maintain homeostasis in both developing and aging mammalian neurons. To do this they utilize forward genetics to identify mutations that are associated with loss of neurons in the aging mouse brain. To further dissect pathways underlying homeostatic disruption and disease, they also use forward genetics to identify genetic variants that enhance or suppress neural phenotypes.

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