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Ogawa-Yamanaka Stem Cell Prize

2019 Ogawa-Yamanaka Stem Cell Prize


The Ogawa-Yamanaka Stem Cell Prize recognizes individuals whose original translational research has advanced cellular reprogramming technology for regenerative medicine. The prize was established in 2015 through a generous gift from the late Hiro and Betty Ogawa and is supported by the Gladstone Institutes. It also recognizes the importance of induced pluripotent stem  (iPS) cells, discovered by Gladstone Senior Investigator and Nobel laureate Shinya Yamanaka.

This year, Gladstone formed a partnership with the Cell Press group to support this important prize.

Each year, the awardee is honored during a ceremony hosted by Gladstone Institutes in San Francisco, California. The recipient gives a scientific lecture and is presented with the award, along with an unrestricted prize of $150,000.

2019 Recipient

The 2019 Ogawa-Yamanaka Stem Cell Prize was awarded to Gordon Keller, PhD, Director of the McEwen Stem Cell Institute at the University Health Network in Toronto, Canada

Gordon Keller, 2019 Ogawa-Yamanaka Stem-Cell Prize Winner

A world-renowned stem cell scientist, Keller was selected for his contributions to efficient lineage-specific differentiation of human pluripotent stem cells into a myriad of cell types, enabling disease modeling and regenerative medicine approaches for many human diseases. Read more


Past Recipients

Marius Wernig, MD, PhD
Associate Professor at the Institute for Stem Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine at Stanford University

Wernig was selected for his innovative direct neuronal reprogramming technology and for his contributions to the advancement of therapies for genetic diseases based on iPSCs. His groundbreaking research has advanced the development of disease models for neurological diseases and skin disorders.
Lorenz P. Studer, MD
Director of the Center for Stem Cell Biology and member of the Developmental Biology Program at the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center

A distinguished stem cell biologist, Studer was selected for his transformative contributions to the field of cellular reprogramming and the application of human induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) to human disease. His groundbreaking research has advanced the therapeutic potential of stem cell–based therapies in Parkinson’s disease and other neurological disorders.
Douglas Melton, PhD
Co-director of the Harvard Stem Cell Institute, Xander University Professor at Harvard University, Investigator of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute

Melton was honored for his research that led to a novel way to reprogram human stem cells into insulin-producing beta cells. His work provides the foundation for the ultimate goal of transplanting patient-specific beta cells to treat diabetes.
Masayo Takahashi, MD, PhD
Project Leader, Laboratory for Retinal Regeneration at the RIKEN Centre for Developmental Biology

Takahashi was honored for her trailblazing research that led to the first clinical trial to use induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells in humans. Her work paves the way for using stem cells to treat retinal diseases, including macular degeneration.