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Biozentrum Lectures 2016

"Explorations of Cell Stress & Cell Death Mechanisms" from laboratory to clinic

John C. Reed, Global Head of Pharma Research & Early Development, Roche
February 11, 2016, Time: 11:00, Hörsaal 1, Pharmazentrum, Klingelbergstrasse 50-70, Basel

Defects in the regulation of apoptosis (programmed cell death) make important contributions to the pathogenesis and progression of many diseases where inappropriate cell accumulation or cell depletion occurs. In the case of cancer, roadblocks to apoptosis are recognized as one of the hallmarks of malignancy, providing neoplastic cells with a selective survival advantage and permitting a variety of aberrant cell behaviors that typify the transformed phenotype. Defects in the normal mechanisms of programmed cell death also figure prominently in cancer resistance to chemotherapy, radiotherapy, and immunotherapy.

John Reed will describe his laboratory’s work on discovering and delineating fundamental mechanisms of apoptosis control and will illustrate how knowledge of the molecular and biochemical events regulating cell death can provide strategies for novel therapeutics. Particular focus will be given to mechanisms that dysregulate cell death control in cancer, the role of Bcl-2 family proteins, and highlights from his journey that resulted in apoptosis-based drug candidates and therapeutics for cancer and other diseases. John Reed will also review some of Roche’s drug candidates currently in clinical development that target components of cell death pathways.

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Dr. John Reed is global head of the Roche Group’s Pharmaceutical Research & Early Development unit. He directs activities from discovery of a promising target through to Phase 2 proof of concept clinical trials for all Roche’s therapeutic areas of focus. Prior to joining Roche in 2013, he served as CEO of one of the largest non-profit biomedical research institutes in the United States, the Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute in La Jolla, California. John Reed, who holds a MD/PhD, has been one of the most cited researchers in the world on cell death, apoptosis, and in cancer biology. He also served on various advisory boards for biopharmaceutical and biotechnology companies as well as public and private non-profit biomedical research organizations. John Reed is an Adjunct Professor at ETH Zurich and a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.