Swim Across America Tours Cancer Research Lab at Yale

May 23, 2017

Dr. Samuel Katz, Associate Professor at Yale School of Medicine and an ACGT Research Fellow, hosted top Swim Across America fundraisers and ACGT staff on May 22 for a presentation of his research and a tour of his lab. A portion of the Swim Across America grant is funding Dr. Katz’s work using RNA to kill blood cancers.

There has been great progress in harnessing a patient’s own immune cells to attack blood cancers. Most protocols use DNA to alter the cells, but the new proteins might also attack healthy tissue. Dr. Katz’s research instead employs RNA, which directs the cells to attack only the cancer and has the added advantage of minimal side effects. In addition, RNA reprogramming is more transient, meaning that after conclusion of treatment, RNA and derivative proteins return to their normal state, which further minimizes possible side effects. Dr. Katz is working with a mouse model whose immune system has been genetically altered to mirror the human immune system, thereby providing a more accurate picture of how patients will react to these treatments.

Dr. Katz will be a keynote speaker at this year’s Swim Across America event on Saturday, June 24, 2017 at ACGT. The goal of the 2017 Swim is to raise $500,000. There is still time to sign up and support this important fundraiser for ACGT researchers. To register or volunteer, visit www.swimacrossamerica.org/greenwich.