2015

Crystal Mackall MD

Stanford University School of Medicine Professor, Pediatrics and Internal Medicine, Co-Medical Director of the Stanford Laboratory for Cell and Gene Medicine

Research Focus: Immunotherapy

Cancer Type: Osteosarcoma

Award: ACGT/Swim Across America/Wendy Walk Sarcoma Grant

Dr. Crystal Mackall is Professor of Pediatrics and Internal Medicine, Co-Medical Director of the Stanford Laboratory for Cell and Gene Medicine. Dr. Mackall’s research is designed to improve upon earlier clinical studies in osteosarcoma, other sarcomas and neuroblastomas that express the tumor antigen GD2 (a mutant antibody) using engineered CAR T cells. The hypothesis of this proposal is that it will be possible to improve outcomes by (1) increasing the persistence of CAR-T cells and (2) differentiation of suppressor cells. If successful, this proposed trial could significantly improve outcomes for patients with this malignancy. The purpose of the grant is to fund original research that could translate into a clinical trial and possible pharmacological and toxicological studies using gene and immunotherapy.

“I am honored that our work has been awarded the Swim Across America/Wendy Walk* ACGT Investigator’s Award in Clinical Translation of Cell and Gene Therapy for Sarcoma,” said Dr. Mackall. “There has been much recent success in cancer immunotherapy and we are hopeful that this work can bring similar success to sarcoma patients.”

Dr. Mackall holds a BS in Natural Sciences from the University of Akron, Akron, Ohio, and received her MD from Northeastern Ohio University College of Medicine. She completed her residency in internal medicine/pediatrics at Akron General Medical Center/Children’s Hospital of Akron, her fellowship in pediatric hematology/oncology at the Pediatric Oncology Branch, National Cancer Institute in Bethesda, Maryland, and her postdoctoral fellowship in immunology at the National Cancer Institute (NCI). Prior to Dr. Mackall’s appointment at Stanford, she was Head of the Immunology Section and Chief of the Pediatric Oncology Branch at the NCI.

*Swim Across America, Inc. (SAA) is dedicated to raising money and awareness for cancer research, prevention and treatment through swimming-related events. With the help of hundreds of volunteers nationwide and past and current Olympians, Swim Across America is helping find a cure for cancer through athleticism, community outreach and direct service. Swim Across America has partnered with ACGT to fund crucial cancer gene and cell therapy grants since 2006. To learn more visit swimacrossamerica.org/greenwich or follow on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.

*Wendy Walk, which co-funds the ACGT Sarcoma Clinical Translation Grant, was founded in 2010 by Ali, Matt, and Jackie Landes to raise funds and awareness for all sarcomas, rare forms of cancer that caused the death of their mother, Wendy. The organization’s most notable events are walks each spring in several cities. The funds raised through the walks allow the Wendy Walk to continually fulfill its mission to find and develop new innovative treatments for sarcoma and serve as a valuable resource for those impacted by this rare disease. To learn more visit wendywalk.org.

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