UW Medicine genetics researcher Dr. Mary-Claire King is among the four 2021 Canada Gairdner International Award laureates announced today, April 7. The award, presented by the Gairdner Foundation in Toronto, honors renowned scientists who have made seminal discoveries that are among the world’s most significant contributions to biomedical science. “During these challenging times,” the Gairdner Foundation said, “we believe it is…
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Multivalent display of receptor-engaging antibodies or ligands can enhance their activity. Instead of achieving multivalency by attachment to preexisting scaffolds, here we unite form and function by the computational design of nanocages in which one structural component is an antibody or Fc-ligand fusion and the second is a designed antibody-binding homo-oligomer that drives nanocage assembly. Structures of eight nanocages determined…
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BBI ‘Catalytic Collaboration Grant’: Bringing Precision Medicine to Pancreatic Cancer A collaboration between Drs. Christopher Kemp (Fred Hutch) and Sita Kugel (Fred Hutch) “Given the lack of major improvements in the clinical outcome of pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma over the past five decades, innovative approaches are clearly called for to discover and develop novel therapeutic targets.” Dr. Christopher Kemp, professor in the Human Biology…
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The idea of massively expanding the budget and mission of the National Science Foundation (NSF) to help the United States out-innovate China is gaining political momentum in Washington, D.C. In Congress, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D–NY) is preparing to introduce a revised version of bipartisan legislation that would create a technology directorate at NSF and boost its funding by…
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The full assembly of human chromosome 8 is reported this week in Nature.  While on the outside this chromosome looks typical, being neither short nor long or distinctive, its DNA content and arrangement are of interest in primate and human evolution, in several immune and developmental disorders, and in chromosome sequencing structure and function generally. This linear assembly is a first…
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Sound Pharmaceuticals Inc. (SPI) is pleased to announce a Cooperative Grant award from the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences (NCATS) at the NIH for $3.1M to support the testing of SPI-1005 in two Phase 2 clinical trials for the treatment of patients with COVID-19. SPI-1005 is an oral capsule containing ebselen, a small molecule with novel anti-inflammatory properties being developed for several…
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Purpose: Basal-like breast cancer (BLBC) is an aggressive molecular subtype of breast cancer that lacks targeted therapies and clinically useful tests to risk-stratify patients. We hypothesized that a transcriptome-based phenotypic characterization of BLBC tumors and their microenvironments may overcome this challenge. Experimental Design: We conducted a retrospective correlative genomic sequencing study using a matched-pairs design with validation in five independent…
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BBI Faculty Conversations: Dr. Tina Lockwood

Today’s installment is with BBI member Tina Lockwood, Associate Professor in the Department of Laboratory Medicine and Director of the Genetics and Solid Tumor Diagnostics Laboratory at the University of Washington. BBI: How has your work and career been guided and impacted by precision medicine? Dr. Lockwood: I’m fortunate to interact with several different areas of precision medicine. As an academic medical center…
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Seattle-based biotech company Impel NeuroPharma is set to go public. The company, which develops drugs for central nervous system disorders such as migraines and Parkinson’s, submitted paperwork on Friday for a $75 million IPO. Founded in 2008, Impel is a late-stage pre-revenue pharma company known for its Precision Olfactory Delivery (POD) platform, which sends drugs into the nasal cavity with the goal of penetrating…
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Umoja Biopharma, a biotechnology company pioneering an integrated, in vivo immunotherapy platform, today announced the appointment of Nushmia Khokhar, M.D., as Chief Medical Officer. “We are excited to welcome Dr. Khokhar to the Umoja team. Nushmia is an accomplished oncologist who has spent a significant portion of her career overseeing the transition of novel cancer therapeutics from discovery to clinical…
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