February 5, 2015



Cancer CellsWe so much appreciate your year-end donations, your year-long support, and your continuing commitment to the promise of cell and gene therapies. 2014 was another remarkable year with more positive research results, more clinical trials, new drugs moving towards approvals, two gene therapy treatments earning FDA "breakthrough" status, and at ACGT, the addition of new staff and board members. We look forward to an even better 2015 and, with our two new young investigator grants, which will be announced in March, ACGT will have funded $25 million in groundbreaking research. We cannot do all we do without you. 


Thank you for your dedication to providing both leadership gifts and annual gifts, and welcome to our newest donors. Our champions for December and January are:

Steve Annus
Robert Arnold
Allan Bernard
Januar Bishop
Paul Bourdeau
Jeremy Bradshaw
Hugh & Carmen Bridgford
Jane & Fred Brooks
Brown Law Offices
Christoph Burkart
Jonathan Carlson
Don Cates
Josephine & Robert Chandler
Betty & John Condon
Crane Foundation
Sheila Craig
Linda & Dan Cummings
Martin Dickman
Duff & Phelps
Nancy Duffy
Pamela Duke
Eugene Eanes
Bethea Eichwald
Michael Englander
John Ferguson
Vicki & Bill Fitzgerald
Fran Fogarty
Tara Framer
Kathryn Gabler
Arline & Paul Gardner
Michele D'Angelo Garvey
Jo Ann & Gordon Gaynor
Anne Gilhuly
Barbara Burke Gilliam
Nancy & Robert Gregory
Peter Griffin
Sandra & Ira Harkavy
John & Kelly Hartman Fdn.
Barbara Hayes
Jean Heller
Andreas Henke
Chris Herman
Cheryl Hurwitz
Ann & Charles Johnson
Shirley & Dean Johnson
JP Morgan Chase
Alice Kaplan
Marilyn & Stuart Kaplan
Joanna Karatzas & Philip Enquist
Meghann & John Kelly
Michael Kemp
Randy Kraft
Deborah & Andrew Kramer
Renee & Robert Leopold
Batya & Ezra Levin
Martrevus Lewis
Rachel Lipari
Carolyn & James Lockhart
Richard Malnight
Leslie McDonald
Peggy Ann & Jim Mendler
Juan Meyer
Joyce & Clifford Millian
Denis O'Brien
G. Peter & Patti O'Brien
Larisa Osborne
Diane Ostroski
Ken Parmalee
Staats Pellet
Sharon & Barnet Phillips
Jane & Myron Picoult
Quarles & Brady
Charles Raizen Fdn.
Roy Raizen
Deborah Rivers
Robinson & Cole
Mildred Rosenberg
Evelyn & Rick Ryzerski
S&L Marx Fdn.
Kris Salovaara
Nancy & Stephen Sahlein
Robert Schermer
Dorothy & Brian Schlier
Phyllis & Jay Schondorf
Robert Shasha
Bobeck Shayegani
Elizabeth & David Sherman
Anne & Ronald Simon
Jill & Sanford Sirulnick
Sarah & Bill Smith
Christopher Stavrou
Nancy Stillerman
Winnie & Win Swarr
Eileen & Paul Toretta
Tom Tryforos
Maria & Kevin Tyburski
UMass Medical Center
Jane & Dennis Van de Hey
Karl Von Batsch
Thomas Walmsley
Austin Warrin
Connie & Scott Welsh
Robert & Fran Weisman
Jack & Marylu Williams
John Williams
Pam & Martin Winter
George Yancopoulos
Carol Young
Intrexon Corporation, in partnership with Ziopharm Oncology, committed $100 million in stock to MD Anderson Cancer Center to license an immunotherapy drug based on research by Dr. Laurence Cooper, whose early studies were ACGT-funded. MD Anderson will provide R&D for three years on a drug that harnesses the immune system to combat leukemia and lymphoma. Dr. Cooper, a renowned researcher, and frequent presenter for ACGT on cell and gene therapies, was featured at last year's ACGT symposium in New York with fellow revolutionaries Dr. Carl June, University of Pennsylvania, and Dr. Michel Sadelain, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center who are also breaking new ground in immunotherapies.



Acclaimed scientist Joseph Glorioso III, PhD, professor of genetics and biochemistry at University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, has assumed the Chair of ACGT's Scientific Advisory Council, stepping into the formidable shoes of Founding Chair Dr. Savio L.C. Woo, who retired at year-end from ACGT and from academia. Dr. Glorioso has been a member of the Scientific Advisory Council for ten years and is best known for his work on the use of viruses as vectors for transporting therapeutic genes to destroy cancer. Previously, he was assistant dean for research and graduate studies at the University of Michigan Medical School, as well as the McEllroy Professor in Biochemistry.


"Thanks to Savio Woo, and ACGT funding, so much progress has been made that we are poised to broaden our scientific direction. In addition to supporting discovery, which remains of great importance, we hope to support later-stage research and clinical trials, so that more and more treatments will make their way to accepted practice."

Joseph Glorioso, III, PhD, Chair, ACGT Scientific Advisory Council.




Lieping Chen, MD, PhD, founding member of ACGT's Scientific Advisory Council and the United Technologies Corporation Professor in Cancer Research at Yale University School of Medicine, is advancing new immunotherapy treatments to stimulate the body's natural defenses against disease. Deploying a new generation of agents known as PD-inhibitors, antibodies block the pathway that prevents the immune system from destroying or protecting against cancer. This discipline is crucial to successful immunotherapy and the basis for the drug Keytruda, which received FDA approval last September for use with advanced melanoma, and also Nivolumab, approved last July in Japan, that has successfully treated kidney and lung cancers. Read more about it.   




April 14 - 6:30 PM - Harvard Club, NYC


Please join our scientists and supporters in honoring Dr. Savio L.C. Woo, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, NYC, and Founding Chair of ACGT's Scientific Advisory Council. Invitations will be mailed soon. Contact Joshua Corday for sponsorship opportunities.




Children and grandchildren, nieces and nephews, colleagues and friends of patients and victims are stepping up to support therapies that attack the cancer, not the patient. Launched last fall, #NotImmune is spreading across social media with messages of hope - join the crowd at Twitter #NotImmune or Facebook. 


Help us support breakthrough research that is changing the way cancer

is treated and defeated. Donate in honor or in memory of a loved one,

host an event, tell your friends, and keep posted on progress at www.acgtfoundation.orgon Facebook and Twitter.