MABB Cellular Therapy Award

This award was established in 2019 to recognized individuals who have made a significant contribution to the field of cellular therapy - a field that encompasses bone marrow transplant, genetic engineering and therapy, immunotherapy and regenerative medicine.

Recipients of the MABB Cellular Therapy Award...

• practice in at least one of the three areas of cellular therapy: Academia, Regulatory (including Quality Operations), or Industry.

• have contributed through long term service to the field of cellular therapy with distinction

• have made significant contributions in the cellular therapy field.

The Massachusetts Association of Blood Banks is pleased to present the 2019 MABB Cellular Therapy Award to Jerome Ritz, M.D.

Dr. Ritz is a Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School, a Distinguished Physician at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute (DFCI), a Senior Physician at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Executive Director of the Connell and O‘Reilly Families Cell Manipulation Core Facility (CMCF) and Pasquarello Tissue Bank at DFCI, and Director of the Harvard Medical School Post-graduate courses. He serves as an ad hoc member for Extramural and Intramural Scientific Review Committees at the National Institutes of Health, is on the Scientific Advisory Board for the National Cancer Center and serves on several external scientific and editorial review boards across the country.

Inasmuch as the MABB Cellular Therapy Award was created to recognize individuals who have made significant contributions to the field which now encompasses bone marrow transplant, genetic engineering and therapy, immunotherapy and regenerative medicine, Dr. Ritz exemplifies the ideal recipient of this award, as he has been a true pioneer in all aspects of this field for over 40 years.

He has blazed paths in hematopoietic stem cell transplantation through intricately describing reconstitution of the immune system in various clinical settings, in treatment of hematologic malignancies by harnessing various immune cell subsets, in both stem cell and even solid organ transplantation by inducing immune tolerance, in pediatric immunodeficiencies by exploiting genetically modified cells, and has supported novel regenerative medicine approaches for conditions spanning from neurologic to endocrine disease.  Between translational immunologic research, ground-breaking novel manufacturing approaches, and facilitation of manufacturing for clinical trials, his contributions span the entire spectrum of the cell therapy field.

Among his greatest attributes are teaching and mentoring others to reach their full potential, which he has done for hundreds of successful clinicians and researchers across the globe. Despite his many demands, his door is always open to staff and researchers for discussing new ideas, assisting with grant applications, and just for being a great sounding board. All who know him deeply appreciate the time and devotion he gives to them and to the field. There isn’t a more deserving candidate to receive our first MABB Cellular Therapy Award than Dr. Jerome Ritz.