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ROTRF Recognition Prize - Recipients Announced

The Board of Trustees of the Roche Organ Transplantation Research Foundation (ROTRF) is pleased to announce the recipients of the ROTRF Recognition Prize. The prizes were awarded to investigators whose ROTRF-funded projects had a major impact on the field of transplantation and whose achievements best exemplify the mission of the ROTRF. The award-winning projects spanned a wide range of topics, such as induction of tolerance, the role of regulatory T cells and anti-inflammatory molecules in graft acceptance, the role of innate and adaptive immunity in allograft rejection, immunology of CMV infection and T cell allorecognition.

Over the years, the ROTRF has supported many important and innovative projects in basic science and clinical research applicable to the understanding and care of human organ transplant recipients and related tissue transplants. In 2010, the Trustees invited all ROTRF grant recipients to participate in a survey presenting the results of their ROTRF-funded projects. The Trustees had the difficult task of selecting only a number of projects from the abundance of commendable research programmes, and selected 11 outstanding projects to receive an ROTRF Recognition Prize.

The Trustees were very impressed with the overwhelming amount and quality of data and publications produced by ROTRF grant recipients over the years and were pleased to have been able to fund areas of transplantation that are often not funded and young investigators who would have otherwise faced difficulties to pursue their ideas and establish their research programmes. The Trustees also recognise that there are several promising and important projects currently ongoing, which will likely impact on clinical practice in the years to come.

The recipients of the ROTRF Recognition Prize have been invited to present the results of their ROTRF-funded research at the ROTRF Luncheon Satellite Symposium to be held at the Pennsylvania Convention Center in Philadelphia, USA on Saturday, 30 April, 2011.

Dr David Adams, University of Birmingham, Birmingham, UK
Human Hepatic Dendritic Cells Induce Tolerance via Notch Signalling
Dr Simi Ali, Newcastle University, Newcastle-upon-Tyne, UK
Anti-Rejection Therapy: Modifying Intragraft Immunity by Specific Blockade of Th1 Cell Recruitment
Non-Glycosaminoglycan-Binding Chemokine Receptor Agonists: a Novel Route to Anti-Rejection Therapy?
Dr Anita Chong, The University of Chicago, Chicago, USA
Pathogenesis and Protective Activities of anti-Gal Antibodies
Bacterial Infections and Allograft Tolerance
Bacterial Infections and Transplantation Tolerance
Dr Julie Déchanet-Merville, CNRS, Bordeaux, France
Study of the Role of Gamma-Delta T Lymphocytes in the Immune Response Directed against Human Cytomegalovirus
Dr Leszek Ignatowicz, Medical College of Georgia, Augusta, USA
Visualizing the Role of Individual CD4+ T cell Clones in Response to Allograft
Origin and Dynamic Allocation of Foxp3+ Regulatory T cells upon Graft Rejection or Acceptance
Dr Megan Levings, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada
Manipulating FOXP3 to Induce Transplantation Tolerance in Humans
Dr James McCluskey, The University of Melbourne, Parkville, Australia jointly with Professor Jamie Rossjohn, Monash University, Clayton, Australia
Defining the Molecular Basis of T cell Allorecognition
Understanding the Structural Basis of T cell Allorecognition
Dr Miguel Soares, Instituto Gulbenkian de Ciência, Oeiras, Portugal
Heme Oxygenase-1: an Anti-inflammatory Molecule that Promotes Organ Graft Survival
Dr Peter Terness, University of Heidelberg, Heidelberg, Germany
Prevention of Allograft Rejection by Local Expression of the IDO Gene
Using the Immunosuppressive IDO Gene for Prevention of Allograft Rejection
Dr Joost van Meerwijk, Toulouse University, Toulouse, France
Induction of Allograft Tolerance with Regulatory T cells in Mice Harboring a Humanized Immune System
Dr Barbara Wasowska, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, USA
Activation of Macrophages and Endothelium by Non-complement Fixing Antibodies in Allograft Rejection
Sialylated IgG Antibodies Inhibit Inflammation and Graft Rejection