#GeneHumdi2024STMS

Do you want to give a boost to your Genome Editing project abroad?
Are you an enthusiastic student/young investigator from an EU member country?
Would you like to embrace an international experience supervised by a top GenEd scientist?


COST Action CA21113, Genome editing for the treatment of human disease: Gene-Humdi, is opening the 2024 call for Short Term Scientific Missions Soon. We provide funding opportunities for short stays in laboratory across EU. This year we also feature support for Inclusiveness Target Countries and or Near Neighbor Countries. You can prepare by learning more about our mission at www.genehumdi.eu or looking for a suitable mentor among our amazing members listed HERE

#GeneHumdi2024Meeting

The biggest Gene Editing for the treatment of Human Disease with be held in Limassol 8-10 April:Conference, WG sessions and Networking opportunities await in Cyprus

THE EXPECTATIONS

Last year the COST Action Meeting had a blast of Kick-off meeting, with close to a hundred assistant from over 20 nationalities. High level scientific, industry and regulatory presentations. Ex cursus, we enjoyed great scientific exchange and collaboration opportunities during the conference and the networking initiatives facilitated by our networking partners. Despite the intense agenda most GeneHumdi members end up thirsty for more.(You can refresh the meeting here abstracts: GeneHumdi2023Meetin Drive link)

We waited almost a year, and finally, the first draft of the most waited European Gene Editing the treatment of Human disease Meeting is here!!
The GeneHumdy Action thanks the extraordinary labour of the restless Cyprus organizing Committee together with our Action Chairs and to allow us to have a peak at the draft, that unfinished as is, it already loops amazingly appealing.

THE AGENDA 2024

The event extends over 3 days: 8, 9 and 10 of APRIL.

On the first day of the meeting, GeneHumdi is hosting a public conference driven by the action mission to reach all society groups and provide young and early career access to our network.

The Opening day features an outstanding Keynote talk to highlight gender roles in science and the educational session with prestigious prestigious speakers of science, healthcare, industry partners and selected abstracts from Inclusiveness Target Countries and Early Career Scientist. It will be followed by a technical session on new developments.

The second day will be a communion to strengthen the different working groups. Having members from each working group present and discuss the challenges and opportunity that the WG members have already identified.

The closing day will be an executive meeting for the rapporteurs and WG Leaders to discuss the state of the action and the task planned. They will set the blueprint for the consecution of the GeneHumdi Action deliverables in 2024.

THE OPENING CONFERENCE

Provisional: slots, order and speaker may differ in the final program
Provisional: slots, order and speaker may differ in the final program
Provisional: slots, order and speaker may differ in the final program

THE WORKING GROUP SESSIONS

Separate Sessions for each WG will be held in which selected active members and Tasl-leaders will present progres, challenges, and opportunities identified during the completion of the planned task. We are getting ready to welcome all GeneHumdi Members that can join our COST Action annual meeting. We are preparing a thrilling 3 day agenda including outstanding conferences of leaders, key partners and active members from all working groups

THE VENUE

The local organizing team leaded by Carsten Lederer, has secured The venue is Pefkos Hotel Limassol in Limassol,Cyprus (https://pefkoshotel.com) . The recently renovated Pefkos City Hotel – opened 7 June 2018. It is the nearest Hotel and within walking distance  10 to 15 minutes) to the Limassol Marina, the famous Medieval Castle area in the Old City and the nightlife at Saripolou Square as well as the main shopping area of Limassol City

Closest international Airports by road:

Paphos International Airport (40 min drive)

Larnaca International Airport (LCA) (49 min drive)

FUNDING OPORTUNITIIES

Our COST Action has grown to over 250 members, which makes impossible to grant sufficient funding for all members. However, WG leaders are entrusted with the task of identifying most active members inside each WG to make sure that they can continue their contribution in the annual meetings.

On Day1, there is a full session devoted to Inclusiveness Target countries and Early Career Scientist (Yes, graduated students and postdocs/industry under training are welcome!!). To fill this session, Abstract submission will be needed together with your application, and “Invited speakers” will be selected according to scientific criteria and GeneHumdi COST Action policies.

APPLICATION

Application for ITC and ECR will open son, please follow the CSOT Action 21113 (GeneHumdi) media and review the email address you provide upon signing up.

Instructions will follow shortly.

PARTNERING OPPORTUNITIES

Given the dimension of the network, and the increasing interest in the meeting we appreciate Silver, Gold and Platinum Partners’ support to help provide networking opportunities to members and non-COST eligible assistants. Platinum partners are invited to introduce themselves during Day 1 Public conference. For more information on how to support the GeneHumdi mission during the meeting contact Carsten Lederer (lederer@cing.ac.cy)

(Local) Media opportunities

This event will bring together science, industry, healthcare, and regulatory key players from all around Europe. If you wish to help covering this influential meeting, or you are a press member interested in interviewing or report the event into your network, of for any other consults please refer to the SCC: javier.molina@genyo.es

See you at Limassol!!

Javier Molina & Carsten Lederer on behalf of the 2nd GeneHumdi Organizing Committee.
Granada, 3 February 2024

Workshop on CRISPR Technologies and iPSC-Based Disease Models

We are thrilled to announce a virtual seminar series dedicated to the innovative domains of CRISPR technologies and iPSC-based disease models. Join us to gain insights from experts in gene editing and iPSC modeling.

Seminar Series Highlights:

– Introduction to CRISPR (CRISPR 101)

– Potential of iPSC-Based Disease Models

– Massively parallel CRISPR/Cas gene perturbation

– CRISPR-Based Gene Modulation Techniques

– Strategies for Efficient Gene Editing Delivery

– Immune Modulation via Gene Editing

📅 Dates: 14th – 24th November

⏰ Time: 10:00 AM – 11:00 AM

🔗 Access Link to the Seminars: (will be announced soon)

Expand Your Network!

Alongside the seminar series, we are also launching virtual forums, envisioned as a platform for enthusiasts, experts, and novices alike. Dive into discussions, share your thoughts, and pose questions. Let’s build a thriving community centered on the transformative potential of gene editing and its clinical applications.

🔗 Join the Forums on Discord: https://discord.gg/w2tBhrqF

Stay tuned for more detailed information. Ensure you’re connected to our Discord server to stay updated.

As a token of appreciation, certificates of attendance will be provided to those who attend the seminar series.

Registration Form: https://forms.office.com/r/7LtcFa6scy

Any question, you can contact directly the organizer 📧alvaro.plaza@cabimer.es

or our Grant Holder Manager 📧mariaj.bazuelo@juntadeandalucia.es

GenEHumdi nurtures Gene Therapy colaborative networks between EU and Morroco.

Moroccan Society of Genomics and Human Genetics (SM2GH) and Spanish Society of Gene and Cell Therapy (SETGyC) Forge Strategic Collaboration

The Moroccan Society of Genomics and Human Genetics (SM2GH) and the Spanish Society of Gene and Cell Therapy (SETGyC) are thrilled to announce a groundbreaking collaborative agreement, signed on Friday, October 20th, 2023, to advance scientific and educational cooperation between the two esteemed organizations.

This historic collaboration aims to foster partnerships between the SM2GH and the SETGyC, focusing on the pivotal domains of human genetics, immunogenetics, genome editing, and the development of gene and cell therapies. At the core of this alliance is a shared commitment to nurturing the growth and development of young researchers, regardless of their Moroccan or Spanish origins.

Key objectives of this collaborative agreement include:

  1. Student and Young Researcher Training: Both societies are dedicated to equipping the next generation of scientists with the knowledge and skills needed in the fields of genome editing, gene therapy, and cell therapy.
  2. Training of Trainers: The collaboration will facilitate the training of trainers in the specialized areas of genome editing and gene and cell therapy, ensuring a sustainable knowledge transfer process.
  3. Joint Educational Initiatives: SM2GH and SETGyC will co-organize a series of courses, workshops, and conferences that cater to the scientific interests of both societies. These events will serve as hubs for knowledge exchange and collaboration, bringing together experts from both Morocco and Spain.

The implementation of this agreement will also be facilitated through the Cost Action CA21113, “Gene Editing for the Treatment of Human Diseases” (GenEHumDi). By leveraging this initiative, Professor Khalid Sadki, the Founder and President of SM2GH, will embark on a Short Term Scientific Mission (STMS) to Donostia, Spain, further strengthening the bonds of cooperation between the two societies. The meeting in Donostia witnessed the historic agreement being co-signed by Professor Ander Izeta, President of SETGyC, and Professor Khalid Sadki, the visionary leader behind SM2GH.

The signing of this collaborative agreement represents a significant milestone in the pursuit of scientific excellence, cross-cultural understanding, and the advancement of human genetics, genome editing, and gene and cell therapy. Both SM2GH and SETGyC are committed to nurturing the talent of young scientists and researchers in Morocco and Spain, ushering in a new era of scientific progress and innovation.

For media inquiries and more information, please contact: the Cost Action CA21113 SCC Coordinator.

About SM2GH

The Moroccan Society of Genomics and Human Genetics (SM2GH) is a leading scientific organization dedicated to advancing research and education in the fields of genomics and human genetics in Morocco. Founded by Professor Khalid Sadki, SM2GH is committed to promoting scientific excellence, fostering collaboration, and facilitating knowledge exchange among professionals and students in Morocco and beyond. More information in its website: https://www.sm2gh.ma/

About SETGyC

The Spanish Society of Gene and Cell Therapy (SETGyC) is a distinguished institution at the forefront of research and development in gene and cell therapies in Spain. Led by President Professor Ander Izeta, SETGyC is focused on driving scientific innovation, fostering educational initiatives, and facilitating partnerships within the field of gene and cell therapy. Find more in : https://www.setgyc.es/

About GenEHumDi

The GENome Editing for the treatment HUMan DIseases (GenEHumdi|COST Action 21113) is an EU funded initiative to fuel promotion of laboratory proven Genome Editing technologies towards clinical implementation. Such therapeutic strategies requires coordination and of basic, applied, industrial, and pharmaceutical scientist in addition to industry and regulatory agencies. This initiative is currently chaired by prof, Karim Benabdel and Alessia Cavazza.

New Open Call for Virtual Mobilities – Apply Now for Your Chance to Secure a Grant!

[Granada, October 2023] – COST Action CA21113 is thrilled to announce a new open call for Virtual Mobility (VM) grants, offering an outstanding opportunity for researchers and innovators to engage in virtual collaborations that can accelerate your career and broaden your network.

5 Grants Available!

We’re allocating a total of 5 Virtual Mobility grants, opening doors for enthusiastic individuals ready to embark on a journey of knowledge exchange, skill enhancement, and networking within the COST Action community.

What is Virtual Mobility (VM)?

Virtual Mobility is a dynamic collaboration in a virtual setting among researchers or innovators within the COST Action network. It allows participants to exchange knowledge, learn new techniques, and contribute to the advancement of European knowledge creation and innovation potential.

Why should you apply for a VM grant?

  • For COST Action: VM grants are a flexible tool to implement virtual activities, achieve MoU objectives, and increase our European impact and reach.
  • For VM Grantees: By participating in VM activities, you’ll develop essential capacities in virtual collaboration and networking within a pan-European framework, enhancing your career and skills.

Opportunities Await

COST Action CA21113 is looking for researchers to undertake the following tasks within the Virtual Mobility program:

  • Virtual Mentoring Scheme: Focus on activities and exchanges that build capacity and new skills, particularly for Young Researchers and Innovators.
  • Harmonization and Standardization: Support the standardization of methods and procedures within our network through coordination and preparation.
  • Research Coordination Activities: Assist in activities that do not require in-person presence, such as computational or modeling tasks and data analysis.

Application Details

To apply for a VM grant, you’ll need to prepare:

  • Title: A concise title for your proposed activity.
  • Start and End Date: Ensure it falls within the active Grant Period.
  • Budget Requested: Specify the budget you require.

Additionally, you must upload:

  • Application Form: Utilize the provided template on e-COST, describing your main objective, work plan, participation strategy, expected outcomes, and how your activity contributes to the Action MoU objectives.
  • Other Required Documents: Any additional documents requested by the Action (e.g., recommendation letters, etc.).

Important Dates

  • Application Deadline: Submit your proposals by 15/10/2023.
  • Reporting and Payment Claim: Submit required reports and documentation via e-COST by 5th November 2023.

Funding Scheme

  • Name: Virtual Mobility Grant
  • Scope: Providing a contribution for the overall effort.
  • Maximum Amount (EUR): Up to EUR 1,500.00 per grant.
  • Decision of the Amount: Decided by the Action MC or Core Group based on evaluator recommendations, reflecting the task’s duration, scope, and complexity.

Don’t miss this incredible opportunity to elevate your research and innovation skills. Contact our Grant Holder Manager, Maria Bazuelo, at 📩 mariaj.bazuelo@juntadeandalucia.es for details and application guidance.

Join us in advancing European leadership in knowledge creation and innovation. Apply for a Virtual Mobility grant today!
READ FULL CALL HERE: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1ok5SU93TN6o1ptKGNV07f-0junKwNDDx/view?usp=sharing

About GenEHumDi, COST Action CA21113

Gene Editing for treatment of Humans diseases ( GenEHumDi) COST Action CA21113 fosters collaboration and innovation among European researchers and innovators. Our Virtual Mobility program empowers individuals with tools to excel in their fields and contribute to the European research community.

GeneHumdi Empowering Education

Aarhus University Summer Course Completes Two Weeks of Intensive CRISPR/Cas9 Teaching

GeneHumdi in collaboration with Aarhus University (AU) is proud to announce the successful conclusion of a magnificent two-week summer course: Genetic Engineering using CRISPR/Cas. This initiative coordinated by Rasmus O. Bak provides a comprehensive program supporting transformative learning experiences for 34 students who hailed from a diverse array of educational backgrounds and where 14 different nations were represented. The course took participants on a deep dive into the world of CRISPR/Cas, equipping them with invaluable insights and skills that will undoubtedly shape their academic and professional journeys.

This summer course has been previously featured in the AU summer agenda, but this is the first time that GeneHumdi has partnered with the prestigious Aarhus University to promote the education of students interested in Medical Genome Editing applications.

Throughout the course, participants were guided through a series of learning objectives designed to foster a robust understanding of the CRISPR/Cas technique and its broad applications. Students delved into the core principles that underpin CRISPR/Cas technology, gaining a solid foundation in its mechanisms and potential, and were offered with a comprehensive overview of CRISPR/Cas technology’s current status and its relevance within the dynamic landscape of biomedical research. Participants gained insights into its potential to revolutionize various fields within healthcare and scientific discovery. Participants were equipped with the ability to critically evaluate and select relevant parameters for gene editing projects. This encompassed the selection of appropriate CRISPR platforms, cell types, delivery methods, and vector design strategies.

This course nurtured their skills to discern and interpret outcomes from diverse assays used to quantify both on- and off-target gene editing. This analytical competency is crucial for ensuring accurate and effective gene editing outcomes. Later, attendants were encouraged to independently conceptualize and execute CRISPR/Cas gene editing projects. This practical experience empowered them to translate theory into real-world applications.

The course pomotes enabling students to navigate and analyze original literature within the CRISPR/Cas field. This skill not only strengthens their understanding but also allows them to formulate pertinent research hypotheses based on current scientific discourse. The participants’ diverse educational backgrounds encompassed fields ranging from Medicine, Molecular Medicine, and Biotechnology, to Nanoscience, Dentistry, Biology, and Bioinformatics. This rich blend of perspectives and expertise enriched the course’s collaborative learning environment.

The GeneHumdi organization joins local organizing extending their sincere gratitude to its dedicated team members – Sofie, Kasper, Sujan, Simon, and Sabina – whose invaluable support greatly enhanced the exercises and group projects. Special recognition is also extended to Emil and Sarah for their engaging lectures that deepened participants’ grasp of the subject matter.

This year AU’s Summer Course was made even more impactful through collaboration with the EU COST network in Genome Editing for the treatment of humans diseases, GeneHumdi | COST action CA21113. This COST Action funded travel scholarships for nine deserving students, exemplifying the commitment to democratizing access to cutting-edge education in Europe.

The involvement of the COST network also facilitated the incorporation of lectures by esteemed international gene editing experts. The AU Summer University extends its sincere appreciation to the following COST members for their contributions to nurturing the next generation of scientific leaders:

The collaboration with the COST network proved instrumental in enhancing the course’s impact, enabling the inclusion of lectures delivered by international gene editing experts, members of GeneHumdi. They brought their knowledge and experience to the AU Summer University’s platform, enriching the learning experience for the participating students, and increasing the multicultural experience. Notable lectures and discussion were held by Yonglun Luo (Alun) from Denmark, Anna Cereseto from Italy, Julian Grünewald from Germany, Ayal Hendel from Israel, Raul Torres, Javier Molina Estévez from Spain, and Karim Benabdellah (the later three from Spain). Their contributions are an embodiment of the commitment to fostering the growth of the next generation of scientific leaders.

This Aarhus University partnership with the COST network underscores it’s dedication to providing a global and collaborative educational experience. By bringing together accomplished professionals and emerging talents, this initiative contributes to the advancement of knowledge and the cultivation of a dynamic scientific community that transcends geographical boundaries.

GeneHumdi is a pioneering European initiative, highlights the commitment to harnessing Genome Editing for Clinical Practice. By uniting professionals from basic science to end-point healthcare, the initiative aims to harmonize introduction and implementation of genome editing practices, helping to better understand their scientific basis, practical application, and raise awareness about their potential to rectify disease-causing genes.

For further information about the Aarhus Summer University and its transformative CRISPR/Cas summer course, please reach out to Rasmus O. Bak. at Aarhus University or Javier Molina at GeneHumdi.

Six Exceptional Young Researchers are Funded In The First 2023 GeneHumdi STSM Call

Genehumdi achieves great success with its first call for short-term scientific missions, engaging young scientist into genome editing projects and boosting collaboration and network expansion in the field of gene editing.

Granada, July 1st, 2023 – GeneHumdi, a pioneering initiative to turn academic gene editing into medical trials, is thrilled to announce the successful launch and resolution of its first Call for Short-Term Scientific Missions (STSM). This remarkable scientific exchange opportunity not only enhances mobility but also expands the network of promising scientists, fostering the development of new collaborations among current and future leaders in the gene editing field.

The recently concluded First Call for STSM witnessed an exceptional response, with numerous outstanding applications received. While only the top six applicants secured funding to travel and exchange knowledge with their host centers, GeneHumdi wishes to acknowledge the commendable quality and scientific rigor exhibited by all the received proposals. In light of this, the Management Committee is actively considering extending the budget to support young scientists and STSMs among action members.

It is with great pleasure that we extend our congratulations to the six awarded trainees, recognizing their significant contributions to the advancement of gene editing research.

  • Marcelina Abal Sanisidro, a PhD candidate at the Health Research Institute of Santiago de Compostela (Spain), presented the project “Editing strategies for β-hemoglobinopathies.” Her remarkable proposal secured her a stay into the Laboratory of Chromatin and Gene Regulation during Development, led by the revered Dr. Annarita Miccio, currently located at the Institute of Genetic Diseases Imagine, INSERM UMR1163 in Paris, France.
  • Paula García Sacristán, a PhD candidate at the NanoChemBio group at Granada (Spain), specializing in nanotechnology delivery strategies for gene editing approaches, will undertake the project “Optimization of non-viral delivery methods: in vitro efficiency determination of gene-editing lipid nanoparticles” at the Department of Biomedicine, Aarhus University in Denmark (Denmark). She will be under the expert guidance of Yonglun Luo, renowned for his expertise in Gene Editing Delivery tools.
  • Iris Ramos Hernández, a PhD candidate from GENyO, Granada (Spain), has been granted the opportunity to travel to the prestigious Manuel A.F.V. Gonçalves laboratory at Leiden University Medical Centre/Department of Cell & Chemical Biology in Leiden (The Netherlands). Her project, “Harnessing CX3CR1 Intron 4 Knock-In: A Novel Endogenous Protective Regulation for Expression Cassette during Stem Stages in HSPCs for Paracrine Ex-Vivo Strategies” aims to characterize optimized advanced genome editing protocols that will revolutionize medicine in the years to come.
  • Prof. Khalid Sadki from the Faculty of Sciences, University Mohammed V (Morocco), will be visiting Dr. Karim Benabdelah‘s Laboratory at Fundación Pública Progreso y Salud in Granada (Spain) to develop his proposal, “Enhancing Immunotherapy and Genetic Technologies in Morocco through International Collaboration and Training.”
  • Rotem Shachal, a senior research assistant at ABC, Sheba (Israel), will fulfill the project “CRISPR Knock-In of TCRs to target resistant pathogens” at Dr. Dimitrios Laurin Wagner‘s laboratory at Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin (Germany).
  • Last but certainly not least, Maria Stampa, a trainee at IQS, Universidad Ramón Llul (Spain), has been selected for her proposal, “Coating of therapeutic adeno-associated viral vectors for effective gene therapy of Duchenne muscular dystrophy.” Under the expert supervision of Alberto Malerba, she will carry out her research at the prestigious Royal Holloway, University of London(United Kingdom).

GeneHumdi is excited to witness the positive impact these exceptional young researchers will have on the field of gene editing and looks forward to fostering further collaboration and innovation through future initiatives.

[July 15th update, There is a second round of STSM and ITC grants available: check this post]

About GeneHumdi COST Action:

The overwhelming interest displayed by numerous action members and the resounding success of the first call have inspired the Management Committee to extend the Action budget. As a result, a second round of applications for short-term missions and financial support of ITC young scientists willing to participate in conferences or meetings representing GeneHumdi’s interests, such as the European Society of Gene and Cell Therapy (ESGCT) annual meeting in Brussels at the end of October, will be offered.

GeneHumdi is a pioneering COST Action that aims to advance the field of gene editing by promoting international collaboration and knowledge exchange. By connecting talented scientists and facilitating scientific mobility, GeneHumdi strives to accelerate breakthroughs and improve gene editing techniques for the benefit of society.

Francisco Javier Molina Estévez

Science Communication Coordinator

GeneHumdi|COST action CA21113

Javier.molina@genyo.es

Second Call for Inclusive Target Countries Conference Grants and Short-Term Scientific Missions

[Granada, July 15th 2023] – The GenE-Humdi action (Genome Editing to Treat Humans Diseases) is announcing its second call for applications for to promote young researchers mobility and participation in European forums. The initiative aims to encourage researchers from EU member countries and near neighbor countries,  with emphasis in Inclusiveness Target Countries, to participate in conferences and short-term scientific visits, promoting collaboration and knowledge exchange.

Inclusive Target Countries Conference Grants:

Funding available for researchers from: Albania, Armenia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, Croatia, Georgia, Greece, Hungary, Lithuania, Latvia, Malta, Moldova, Montenegro, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovenia, Slovakia, Republic of North Macedonia, Republic of Serbia, Turkey and Ukraine.

Check updated listo f countries >here< specific countries to attend conferences aligned with the project’s objectives.

  • Maximum grant amount: €2000.
  • Applications evaluated based on conference relevance and the proposed contribution to project goals.
  • Applicants must be affiliated with institutions in the eligible countries and meet certain criteria.
  • No fixed deadline, but grants awarded on a first-come, first-served basis until funds are depleted.

Short-Term Scientific Missions (STSMs):

Researchers have the opportunity to visit institutions in other countries to strengthen networks and gain new knowledge. STSMs contribute to the project’s scientific objectives and allow researchers to learn new techniques. They are invaluable tool in young researcher development.

  • Maximum grant amount: €4000.
  • Eligible researchers from COST member countries and neighboring regions can apply, with preference given to young researchers.
  • No fixed deadline, but grants awarded on a first-come, first-served basis until funds are depleted.

Interested researchers should review the project’s Memorandum of Understanding  and full call for the available topics. The application process is managed through the e-COST system as in previous Calls.

For more information and to apply, visit the GenE-Humdi official webpage and refer to the Grant Awarding User Guide on the e-COST system or contact ITC Coordinators or Grant Coordinators (GeneHumdi Leadership postition with contact links).

Read the full call here

About GenE-Humdi:

GenE-Humdi is a collaborative project focused on advancing genome editing research to treat human diseases. The project promotes inclusive participation, research training, and international collaboration.

Media Contact:

Francisco Javier Molina Estévez

Science Communication Coordinator

GeneHumdi|COST Action CA21113

Javier.Molina@genyo.es

GeneHumdi reaches Scientist at the Biannual SETGyC Meeting

The Spanish Gene and Cell Therapy Society (SETGyC) is a sound and long running organization comprising dedicated Spanish researchers committed to the research and development of gene transfer and cell modification for clinical purposes. The SETGyC maintains strong connections with industrial and regulatory partners. The society embraces a collaborative spirit that aligns perfectly with the principles of our GeneHumdi initiative. In a heartfelt open letter, the current President of SETGyC, Ander Izeta, emphasizes that “the foundation of cutting-edge medical advancements lies in the utilization of novel therapeutic tools such as gene therapy and genome editing for the treatment of genetic disorders.” Reflecting the shared valued of this institution with our owns.

This year, Pamplona will host over a hundred leading gene therapy scientists, including renowned key speakers. Tony Cathomen , Felipe Prosper, Ignacio Melero, Paula Rio , Juan Bueren and Raúl Torres to name a few of the the forefront of gene therapy and genome editing for therapeutic purposes in Europe that are presenting in this meeting.

To promote the Action’s mission dr. K. Benabdel lah has been awarded a grant by the GeneHumdi Management Committee to facilitate the dissemination and presentation of the Genome Editing for the treatment of Human disease (GeneHumdi | COST action CA21113) during the Bi-annual Meeting of the Spanish Society of Gene and Cell Therapy. This grant aims to support Dr. Benabdel lah in showcasing the remarkable achievements and advancements of the GeneHumdi initiative to all attendees at the conference.

During his speech in the inaugural session, Karim Benabdellah had the opportunity to present the ambitious plan of GeneHumdi. He graciously extended an invitation to early-career professionals and students to join the initiative, recognizing that nurturing relationships and fostering communication and collaboration with specialists from across Europe is a crucial initial step.

Furthermore, reinforcing the presence of GeneHumdi and to reach young scientist at the SETGyC meeting, the GeneHumdi initiative has a dedicated sign-in stand, where our extraordinaire Grand Holder Coordinator, Maria J. Bazuelo, is actively engaging with prospective Action Members. She is sharing our values and her insight into the mission of the initiative and highlighting the remarkable opportunities that come with being part of this transformative action.

First GeneHumdi papers are out!

The first wave of scientific articles produced thanks to interactions within our GeneHumdi network is out

The GeneHumdi Network aims to pave pathways between the key stages for medical development: basic and translational research, development, production, and healthcare providers and regulators to secure that patients really benefit to the use Gene Editing approaches able to change the actual fate of many diseases.

The goal is ambitious and the first step is to nurture relationships to promote communication and unification of criteria among specialist all over Europe. In this regard, the past March the network held a in person meeting in Granada (Spain) to favor interactions between the members. We are please to witness that this interactions are starting to fruit in the form of joint scientific articles.

Cartoon illustrating gene editing techniques commonly used in academic research. In this example, engineered nucleases are employed to make targeted cuts at specific sequences in the chromosomal DNA. These cuts allow researchers or clinicians to introduce desired changes or reverse disease-causing mutations. Image courtesy of K. Benabdellah, adapted “High-Density Lipoprotein in Metabolic Disorders and Beyond: An Exciting NewWorld Full of Challenges and Opportunities

The first article fruit of the GeneHumdi network funded by the COST (European Coordination in Science and Technology) appeared in April, shortly after the first Action Meeting. It as a review “The Black Hole: CAR T Cell Therapy in AML” focused on Chimeric Antigen Receptor T (CAR T) lymphocytes used in innovative therapies.

In the review the authors tackle the fact that researchers have struggled to make progress in adoptive cellular therapies for acute myeloid leukemia (AML) compared to B cell cancers. Trials using chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T cells have shown limited response rates and side effects. New approaches are needed.

Graphical Abstract of the review: “The Black Hole: CAR T Cell Therapy in AML

Authors discuss the challenges of CAR T cells and other therapies in AML. The genetic and molecular diversity in AML makes treatment complex. Single-cell sequencing data provided insights into cellular variations and hierarchies in AML. While promising strategies include advanced CAR T, TCR-T, and CAR NK therapies, personalized microenvironment targeting, and allogeneic approaches, efforts continue to enhance adoptive cellular therapies for AML by understanding its complexities and exploring innovative strategies.

Two GeneHumdi Action members collaborated to write this review: Erden Atilla (GENyO center, Spain) and Karim Benabdel lah (GENyO center, Spain) were opening the door for many more join articles from the network.

In May this year, a second article from signed from members of the GeneHumdi Network was published in Frontiers of Immunology under the title “Failure of ALL recognition by CAR T cells: a review of CD 19- negative relapses after anti-CD 19 CAR-T treatment in B-ALL”.

In this review the authors address the use of CAR-T cell therapy, which has greatly improved the outlook for patients with refractory or relapsed B cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia (B-ALL), a condition with a poor prognosis under conventional treatment. With anti-CD19 CAR-T cell therapy, the chances of event-free survival for these patients have significantly increased to 50-60% at 1.5 years, which is a significant advancement for this severely ill group. While over 70 % patients achieve complete remission (They defeat the blood cancer until the point is not clinically detectable), the main challenge remains the relapse of the disease (the comeback of tiny amounts of cancer cells that survived and escape detection in the first place and reproduce the disease). Both clinical trials and real-world evidence have shown that relapses often occur due to the limited expansion or persistence of CAR-T cells. Surprisingly, even when CAR-T cells are functioning adequately, some tumor cells manage to evade their attack, resulting in a relapse without the CD19 antigen.

The text highlights various mechanisms that contribute to the escape of leukemic cells, including acquired mutations, alternative splicing of the CD19 antigen, loss or masking of the CD19 epitope, leukemia lineage switching, and trogocytosis (this last is when a cell nibbles another cell). In this comprehensive review, authors analyze these mechanisms, examine the incidence of CD19-negative relapse in clinical trials and real-world evidence, and provide an update on the current understanding of the situation.

The review is signed by several GeneHumdi authors in a thrilling collaboration between Clinicians and academic to help promote the actions values: Maria Dolores Carmona(IMIBIC Institute, Spain), Karim Benabdel lah (GENyO center, Spain) and Concha Herrera (Reina Sofía University Hospital, Spain).

Last but not least, the first international publication nurtured from GeneHumdi Network interactions highlight the need to apply Gene Editing for treatment of Humans diseases.

The review “High-Density Lipoprotein in Metabolic Disorders and Beyond: An Exciting NewWorld Full of Challenges and Opportunities” signed by  2 Members of the Action: Karim Benabdellah and Kyriakos E. Kypreos.

In this paper they review te role of  High-density lipoprotein (HDL), a type of fat and protein in the blood that helps remove excess cholesterol. It also plays a role in metabolic disorders like obesity, diabetes, and fatty liver disease. Low levels of HDL and dysfunctional HDL are found in certain cancers. Adjusting HDL levels and improving its function can benefit these conditions. Previous attempts to raise HDL cholesterol (HDL-C) through medications were not successful, and new clinical trials are needed. Gene editing technology may revolutionize treatment by improving dysfunctional HDL.

These articles are proof that Gene Editing for the treatment of humans Editing Network is set in motion and already having an impact promoting bounds among Academic and Clinical peers. We expect more articles to be produce to help unify scatter information regarding the Genome Tools and strategies available to help treat Human disease as the action further promotes dialogue and unification between peers and among the different actors and agencies involved in new medicines discovery, development, authorization and manufacture.

Gene Editing for the treatment of Humans Diseases (GeneHumdi | CA21113) is funded by the EU through Cooperation in Science and Technology (COST)
Granada , 2023

References:

(1) Atilla, E.; Benabdellah, K. The Black Hole: CAR T Cell Therapy in AML. Cancers 2023, 15, 2713. https://doi.org/10.3390/cancers15102713

(2) Zvintzou, Evangelia, Eva Xepapadaki, George Skroubis, Victoria Mparnia, Katerina Giannatou, Karim Benabdellah, and Kyriakos E. Kypreos. 2023. “High-Density Lipoprotein in Metabolic Disorders and Beyond: An Exciting New World Full of Challenges and Opportunities” Pharmaceuticals 16, no. 6: 855. https://doi.org/10.3390/ph16060855

(3) Aparicio-Pérez C, Carmona M, Benabdellah K and Herrera C (2023) Failure of ALL recognition by CAR T cells: a review of CD 19-negative relapses after anti-CD 19 CAR-T treatment in B-ALL. Front. Immunol. 14:1165870. doi: 10.3389/fimmu.2023.1165870

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