Global Experts to Share Knowledge at Tenth Cooley’s Anemia Symposium

March 20, 2015 – Leading thalassemia experts from around the world will converge in Illinois in October to participate in the Tenth Cooley’s Anemia Symposium. Presented by the New York Academy of Sciences (NYAS) and the Cooley’s Anemia Foundation (CAF), this major scientific meeting takes place October 18-22, 2015 in Rosemont, IL.

“I am absolutely delighted about the lineup of speakers for the symposium this October,” Says Ellis Neufeld, MD, PhD, Chair of the Scientific Organizing Committee. “We have experts from around the U.S. and around the world coming to update each other and the Foundation on exciting advances in thalassemia care and treatment. By holding these symposia only once per five or six years, we hope to capture important new developments, and this year’s symposium will be an outstanding example. It’s important to remember that at our 2009 symposium in New York, Exjade was a ‘new’ therapy, and gene therapy was a brand new development. Now in 2015, gene therapy has taken amazing leaps forward, gene editing therapies are on the near horizon, and entirely new forms of therapy like the activin-2 receptor antagonists and hepcidin analogs are moving forward in clinical trials.”

NYAS1“The symposia on which the Cooley’s Anemia Foundation and the New York Academy of Sciences have collaborated are among the most influential events in the history of thalassemia,” says CAF National President Anthony J. Viola. “Each symposium is an enormous undertaking, requiring painstaking work by all those involved, but the effort is well worth it. The opportunity to bring together the finest minds in thalassemia from around the world and to learn from their shared knowledge is rare and precious. We are grateful to Ellis Neufeld, CAF’s Medical Advisory Board Chair, Brooke Grindlinger, NYAS’s Executive Director of Scientific Programs, and Gina Cioffi, CAF’s National Executive Director, along with all the members of the Scientific Organizing Committee, for the incredible work they are putting in to making this the best Cooley’s Anemia Symposium ever.”

Laura Breda, PhD, who is now an Instructor of Pediatrics with Weill Cornell Medical College, attended the Ninth Cooley’s Anemia Symposium in 2009.

“I think that doctors and scientists at every level of experience can benefit from the Cooley’s Anemia Symposia,” relates Dr. Breda. “Even though Cooley’s anemia is considered a rare disease, its pathophysiology has a lot in common with many other conditions malignant and non-malignant. Cooley’s anemia in fact shares with other diseases features that are related to a genetic defect of the beta globin gene (like sickle cell anemia), iron overload (as in hemochromatosis or MDS), extramedullary erythropoiesis (as in polycitemia vera) and osteoporosis (as in the aging population). So though the Symposium focuses on thalassemia, it has implications beyond the disorder itself.

“Those individuals who are in the early stages of their careers can obtain an invaluable overview of the current state of thalassemia by attending. The meeting also enables them to strengthen the networking among young scientists working in this specific field of hematology, as well as in related conditions.”

The 2015 Symposium will bring together basic scientists, clinical investigators, and clinicians, for interactions and education. Areas of focus will include the biology of globin gene regulation and fetal hemoglobin induction; the evolving areas of stem cell transplant, gene therapy strategies, and gene editing; the biology of iron regulation and possible therapeutic interventions in the hepcidin regulatory system; and clinical issues in thalassemia treatment and imaging. Leading investigators, together with physicians involved in thalassemia care from around the world, will be featured speakers. Interactive poster sessions will allow trainees involved in all of these research areas to present their work.

This year’s keynote speakers include Stuart H. Orkin, MD, Boston Children’s Hospital and Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, who will deliver the Science Keynote Address, and Maria Domenica Cappellini, MD, University of Milan, who will deliver the Clinical Keynote Address.

Complete information on the Symposium, including registration, topics and speakers, can be accessed at

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