We are pleased to introduce you to the Editor-in-Chief of our new open access publication.
We are thrilled to have Chad A. Cowan, PhD on board as the Editor-in-Chief of StemJournal. The Boston-based researcher and associate professor at Harvard Stem Cell Institute (HSCI) leads the journal’s Editorial Board with a unique position within our StemCellHub community – that is growing as our multi-platform open access forum for stem cell research continues to develop – in that he is additionally the Editor of StemBook.
After graduating from the University of Kansas with BA and BS honors degrees, Chad subsequently received his PhD from the University of Texas Southwestern at Dallas, garnering the Nominata award for most outstanding thesis. Following this period of research, he moved to Boston on a Damon Runyon postdoctoral fellowship with Professor Douglas Melton at Harvard University. In 2006, Chad became assistant professor in the Department of Stem Cell and Regenerative Biology at Harvard University. He was at Harvard when HSCI was launched, and is now the director the HSCI iPS Core Facility.
In his current position, he heads the HSCI Diabetes Program, covering innovative, high-impact research projects that aim to enhance biomedical research. Chad explains his lab’s approach: "Our research is focused on understanding the molecular underpinnings of metabolic diseases such as type 2 diabetes mellitus and coronary artery disease. We seek to convert novel genetic findings into the knowledge needed to develop therapies for patients."
Chad is advancing his research in cell therapy, as outlined in a recent interview: "Since cell therapies first started to emerge, people have believed that they will only ever be available to people in the developed world. I can understand that, because there are these seemingly huge barriers to the democratization of cellular medicines. The main barrier is the way we think of cellular medicine right now… We collect cells from a patient, do something to those cells, and put them back in the same patient. Custom-made therapeutics like that are difficult to scale, or to make in any kind of readily accessible form. Anything so highly customized will necessarily be inaccessible to most people." He continues: "It wasn’t until recently that we began to have sufficient information about the immune system to even imagine how you might utilize that information to overcome the immune barrier to transplantation and create a cell that you could potentially put into all people. That’s been the goal of our research."
Of his new role as Editor-in-Chief of StemJournal, Chad is enthusiastic: "I am confident that StemJournal will attract and publish the latest breaking advances in our field. Importantly, with its broad focus the journal also seeks to provide a forum for studies that use stem cells to develop novel therapies and perhaps even cures for people suffering from devastating diseases.” He comments, “Together with the growing StemCellHub, our vision is to build a community for all stem cell researchers to share ideas and advance the field to developing the cures of tomorrow."