James J. Yoo, MD, PhD

Professor of Wake Forest Institute for Regenerative Medicine, USA

Presentation title: Addressing Translational Gaps for Enhanced Delivery of Clinical Products

Date: September 17, 2023 | 8:30am-9:30am

Dr. Yoo is Professor and Associate Director of the Wake Forest Institute for Regenerative Medicine (WFIRM), with a cross-appointment to the Departments of Urology, Physiology and Pharmacology, and the Virginia Tech-Wake Forest School of Biomedical Engineering and Sciences. Dr. Yoo’s research efforts have been directed toward the clinical translation of tissue engineering technologies and cell-based therapies. Dr. Yoo’s background in cell biology and medicine has facilitated the transfer of several cell-based technologies from the bench-top to the bedside. A few notable examples of successful clinical translation include the bladder, urethra, vagina, and muscle cell therapy for incontinence. Dr. Yoo has been a lead scientist in the bioprinting program at WFIRM and was instrumental in developing skin bioprinting and integrated tissue and organ printing (ITOP) systems for preclinical and clinical applications.  

Volker Gerdts, DVM, PhD

Director and CEO of the Vaccine and Infectious Disease Organization (VIDO), Canada

Presentation title: Advances in Vaccine Development for a Rapid Response to Future Pandemics

Date: September 18, 2023 | 8:30am-9:30am

Dr. Volker Gerdts is the Director and CEO of the Vaccine and Infectious Disease Organization (VIDO), the Canada’s centre for pandemic research and also the world leader in infectious disease research and vaccine development for humans and animals. Dr. Gerdts research interests are in the area of neonatal vaccines for both humans and animals, mucosal immunology, and vaccine delivery and formulation.  Current research projects are focused on vaccine development for Porcine Reproductive and Respiratory Syndrome Virus, adjuvants, porcine immunology and the use of pigs as model for humans, immune modulation and regulation of mucosal immune responses.

Molly S Shoichet, PhD, FRSC, FCAE, FCAHS

Professor of University of Toronto, Canada

Presentation title: Designer Hydrogels for Drug Screening & Discovery

Date: September 19, 2023 | 8:30am-9:30am

Dr. Molly Shoichet is an expert in the study of polymers for drug delivery and tissue regeneration. She is the Michael E Charles Professor in Chemical Engineering, at the University of Toronto, Canada, where she held the Tier 1 Canada Research Chair in Tissue Engineering (2001-2020). She is the Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada (FRSC), the Canadian Academy of Engineering (FCAE), and the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences (FCAHS).  Dr. Molly Shoichet aims to advance the basic science and enabling technologies of tissue engineering and drug delivery. She is a world leader in the areas of polymer synthesis, biomaterials design and drug delivery in the nervous system (brain, spinal cord, retina) and 3D hydrogel culture systems to model cancer. Her research program is unique in its breadth, focusing on strategies to promote tissue repair after traumatic spinal cord injury, stroke and blindness and enhance both tumour targeting through innovative strategies and drug screening via 3D cell culture with new hydrogel design strategies. The impact of her brain research was recognized with the prestigious Margolese Brain Disorders Prize in 2020.