Dr. Harold Atkins 2017 Till & McCulloch award winner

Dr. Harold Atkins will be accepting the prestigious Till & McCulloch award at the annual Till & McCulloch Meetings (TMM) to be held November 6-8 in Mont-Tremblant, Québec. Dr. Atkins will receive the award in recognition for his outstanding scientific contribution and the 2016 research paper titled: Immunoablation and autologous haemopoietic stem-cell transplantation for aggressive multiple sclerosis: a multicentre single-group phase 2 trial.

The Till & McCulloch Award, created in honour of Canadian scientists and stem cell pioneers Drs. James Till and Ernest McCulloch, is presented annually to one researcher in Canada, who has made an exceptional contribution to global stem cell research in that year. The TMM Program Committee selects the awardee based on what is determined to be the year’s most impactful and influential peer-reviewed article by a Canadian stem cell researcher.

Upon receiving the news, Dr. Atkins said, “I am speechless. As a trainee, I was lucky enough to know Dr. McCulloch and learn from him. Dr. McCulloch and Dr. Till are role models that I have tried to emulate.”

The outcome of Drs. Harold Atkins and Mark Freedman’s collaborative research demonstrated that with the use of stem cells and chemotherapy, brain inflammation subsided, giving MS patient’s a lasting recovery. This paper is a gateway for future MS research and holds tremendous promise for treating patients with this disease.

This trial was funded by the MS Society of Canada and its affiliated Multiple Sclerosis Scientific Research Foundation. The research was also supported by The Ottawa Hospital Foundation, The Ottawa Hospital Department of Medicine and Canadian Blood Services. Dr. Atkins is affiliated with the Stem Cell Network, the Ontario Institute for Regenerative Medicine, The Ottawa Hospital, and the University of Ottawa.