Jacques Galipeau, MD, has joined Emory University and the Winship Cancer Institute as visiting professor in hematology and medical oncology and visiting professor in Emory’s Department of Pediatrics. Galipeau joins Emory from McGill University in Montreal.
A Georgia Cancer Coalition Distinguished Scholar, Galipeau is a world-renowned expert in cell and gene therapy of cancer and immune ailments and will also serve as co-director of the Emory-Georgia Tech Center for Regenerative Medicine (GTEC). In addition, his goal is to establish a new cell therapy facility that will conduct “first-in-human” clinical studies of innovative new therapies.
“Dr. Galipeau’s work has advanced the field of immune response and opened the door to important research in cell based therapies for cancer, arthritis and lupus,” David Stephens, MD, vice president for research, Emory Woodruff Health Sciences Center, says.
Most recently, Galipeau led a multidisciplinary team of researchers in developing a breakthrough experimental treatment that put multiple sclerosis into remission in mice by suppressing the immune system. The work was published in the September 2009 issue of Nature Medicine.
The treatment, named GIFT15, puts MS into remission by suppressing the immune response. GIFT15 is composed of two proteins, GSM-CSF and interleukin-15, fused together artificially in the lab. Under normal circumstances, the individual proteins act to stimulate the immune system, but in their fused form, the equation reverses itself. In addition, unlike earlier immune-suppressing therapies which rely on chemical pharmaceuticals, this approach is a personalized form of cellular therapy which utilizes the body’s own cells to suppress immunity.
“Dr. Galipeau’s work in enzyme replacement therapy is widely cited and has the potential for great impact in pediatric medicine,” says Barbara Stoll, MD, chair of the Emory University School of Medicine Department of Pediatrics. “Emory and all of Georgia will benefit from Dr. Galipeau’s presence here.”
Galipeau has more than 90 publications in peer-reviewed scientific journals and is a Diplomat of the American Board of Internal Medicine, a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians of Canada, and was a commissioned officer in the Canadian Armed Forces with Honorable Discharge at the rank of Infantry Captain. After earning his medical degree at the University of Montreal, Faculty of Medicine, Galipeau conducted a fellowship in hematology-oncology at Tufts University in Boston and a post doctoral fellowship in gene therapy at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis.
Edmund Waller, MD, PhD, director of Winship’s Bone Marrow and Stem Cell Transplant Center, says, “Dr. Galipeau is a visionary translational scientist. He will bring Emory and Georgia to the next level in immune response cancer research and in the delivery of effective cell therapy for cancer patients as well as other diseases such as multiple sclerosis.”