Featured speakers

Meet some of our speakers here and learn more about their presentations at the 23rd Congress of EHA.
More information to follow on a weekly basis.

Dr Frank Morschhauser

Friday, June 15 - Presidential Symposium
Relevance: Phase III efficacy and safety study of lenalidomide plus RITUXIMAB (R2) versus RITUXIMAB plus chemotherapy, followed by RITUXIMAB, in previously untreated follicular lymphoma

On behalf of all my co-investigators, I’m pleased to present the initial efficacy and safety results from RELEVANCE, the first randomized, international phase III study comparing the chemotherapy-free combination immunotherapy lenalidomide + rituximab (R2) versus rituximab + chemotherapy (R-chemo), both followed by rituximab maintenance, in previously untreated follicular lymphoma patients in need of systemic therapy. These results represent a notable landmark for first-line treatment in follicular lymphoma.

Dr Christian Pecquet

Friday, June 15 - Presidential Symposium
MPN CALR mutants promote Cell-surface localization of TpoR which is obligatory for oncogenesis: Novel therapeutic avenues and rescue of congenital thrombocytopenia TpoR mutants

This work reveals the transformational effects of mutations in the Endoplasmic Reticulum-resident chaperone calreticulin which lead to constitutive activation of oncogenic signal transmitted through the thrombopoietin receptor in myeloproliferative neoplasms (MPNs). In addition to this rogue cytokine activity,  mutations of calreticulin found in MPNs show rogue chaperone activity capable of restoring function and cell surface localization for a crippled Tpo receptor mutant which is known to be blocked inside the cell and to be associated with congenital amegakaryocytic thrombocytopenia. Several lines of evidence will be presented that support cell surface signaling by TpoR-mutant CALR complexes.

Dr Sergey Sulima

Friday, June 15 - Presidential Symposium
Ribosomal lesions promote oncogenic mutagenesis

The recent discovery of somatic ribosomal mutations in hematologic malignancies gave rise to an important and rapidly growing field of study. We will be sharing exciting novel insights into the oncogenic mechanisms of such ribosomal mutations.

Dr Francesca Vinchi

Friday, June 15 - Presidential Symposium
Chronic red blood cell transfusions impair the innate immune response to infectious cues by shaping macrophages towards an anti-inflammatory functional phenotype

Heme and iron show a prominent role regarding their diverse effects on inflammation and the innate immune system. During my talk I will show that different heme and iron sources differentially affect the functional response and phenotypic nature of macrophages under steady-state and inflammatory conditions. I will highlight the relevance of our findings for individuals with iron overload, including patients with sickle cell disease and myelodysplastic syndromes to chronically transfused and iv iron-treated patients, and outline therapeutic options to modulate this process.

Dr Valentin Goede

Friday, June 15 - Presidential Symposium
Comorbidities: Final survival analysis of the Cll11 study

On behalf of CLL11 researchers, I will present the final survival analysis of the CLL11 study - a large randomized trial performed in patients with previous untreated CLL and comorbidities. Presented data robustly confirm previously observed benefits from using obinutuzumab (formerly GA101) instead of rituximab during chemotherapy of such patients, and for the first time demonstrate overall survival advantage by one particular CD20 antibody over another.

Dr Stefano Rivella

Sunday, June 17 - Plenary session II
Treating Thalassemia: Thinking “out of the box”

The presentation will focus on some of the discoveries that led to the present interpretation about the relationship about erythropoiesis and iron metabolism and how this is propelling drug discoveries in the field of anemia. It will also discuss unpublished data about potential novel mechanisms and treatments for beta-thalassemia.

Dr Gert Ossenkoppele

Saturday, June 16 - EHA-KSH Joint Symposium
AML

Visit my talk:
"Exciting new developments in the treatment of unfit patients with AML will be discussed".
"New hope for unfit AML patients".

Dr JH Lee

Saturday, June 16 - EHA-KSH Joint Symposium
AML

Optimal selection of chemotherapy regimens for induction treatment in acute myeloid leukemia will be discussed by Professor JH Lee.

Dr Hans-Reimer Rodewald

Friday, June 15 - EHA-JSH Joint Symposium
Hematopoiesis

“The Rodewald laboratory has developed new, non-invasive genetic fate mapping and barcoding experiments to unravel fundamental properties of the hematopoietic system, including output quantification from HSC in vivo (Busch et al. Nature 2015), identification of the yolk sac progenitors giving rise to tissue-resident macrophages (Gomez Perdiguero, Klapproth et al. Nature 2015), and determination of developmental fates realized by hematopoietic stem cells in vivo (Pei, Feyerabend et al. Nature 2017). The laboratory has discovered a key role for cell competition as a tumor suppressor mechanism preventing T cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia in the thymus (Martins et al. Nature 2014).“

Dr Koji Eto

Friday, June 15 - EHA-JSH Joint Symposium
Hematopoiesis

Professor Koji Eto will discuss on "revealing how a previously unknown physical stimulation regulates platelet shedding from human iPS cell-derived megakaryocytes, leading to the successful generation of over 100B (10e11) platelets ex vivo.''

Dr Tsvee Lapidot

Sunday, June 17 - Plenary Session 2
Healthy and malignant hematopoiesis in the bone marrow: Active cells in a dynamic environment

In this talk metabolic regulation of normal and leukemic stem cells in the bone marrow will be discussed.
In particular the roles of reactive oxygen species (ROS) and nitric oxide (NO) and their mode of action will be revealed.

Dr Charles Swanton

Saturday, June 16: EHA-ASH Joint Symposium
Cellular immunotherapy

Cancer genetic heterogeneity fuels natural selection and adaptation of tumours in the face of tumour microenvironmental change and cancer therapies. This talk will consider how tumours adapt under selection pressures and how the immune system constrains tumour growth. Novel therapeutic approaches targeting cancer evolution and leveraging the immune microenvironment will be discussed.

Dr Giampaolo Merlini

Sunday, June 17: Plenary Session 2
Amyloidosis: The rapidly changing face of diagnosis and therapy in AL amyloidosis

Formidable advances have been made during the last decade in deciphering the molecular mechanisms underlying AL amyloidosis and in the management of this complex and dreadful disease.
The combination of biomarkers and imaging united with increased awareness led to earlier diagnosis with a positive impact on patients’ outcome. Novel drugs are enriching the therapeutic landscape and immunotherapies aimed at accelerating the reabsorption of amyloid deposits are under development. The future lies in risk-adapted combination of anti-clone therapy and anti-amyloid treatments, holding promise of further improving the outlook in this now treatable disease.

Dr Markus Müschen

Saturday, June 16: Plenary Session 1
Autoimmunity checkpoints as therapeutic targets in B-cell malignancies

Unlike other types of cancer, B-cell malignancies are susceptible to negative selection and cell death induced by hyperactive signaling from an autoreactive B-cell receptor. While targeted therapy of cancer typically focuses on agents to suppress activity of oncogenes, Markus Müschen and colleagues introduce a new concept of targeted hyperactivation with the goal to trigger autoimmunity checkpoints and cell death in B-cell tumors.