The American Society of Hematology (ASH) will honor Christoph Klein, MD, PhD, of Children’s Hospital, Ludwig-Maximilians University in Munich, Germany, with the 2011 William Dameshek Prize, at the upcoming Annual Meeting in San Diego.
Dr. Klein is being recognized by ASH for his many groundbreaking contributions to hematology, including his landmark discovery of mutations in HAX1 genes in patients with severe congenital neutropenia (Kostmann disease) and his discovery of human P14/ROBLD3 deficiency and G6PC3 deficiency, genetic defects that can cause severe congenital neutropenia.
Dr. Klein is Chair of Pediatrics at the Dr. von Hauner Children’s Hospital at Ludwig-Maximilians University.
Profound Impact on Medicine
“The Society is honored to present this award to Dr. Klein for his pioneering research into the pathophysiology of rare diseases, which has had a direct and profound impact on clinical medicine,” said ASH President J. Evan Sadler, MD, PhD, of the Washington School of Medicine in St. Louis. “His discoveries have advanced our understanding of diseases that, until recently, were not well-understood, providing new hope to patients.”
Dr. Klein and his team’s recent contributions to hematology include his discovery that genetic mutations affecting the interleukin-10 receptor are associated with severe early-onset inflammatory bowel disease, leading him to use a stem cell transplant that successfully put one child’s inflammatory bowel disease into remission. A second recent accomplishment includes Dr. Klein’s application of gene therapy to treat Wiskott-Aldrich Syndrome, which succeeded in correcting symptoms of this rare, inherited disorder in 9 out of 10 children in a clinical trial.
About the Award
The William Dameshek Prize is named after the late William Dameshek, MD, a renowned hematologist, past president of ASH, and first editor of ASH’s journal Blood. It is awarded to an individual who has made a recent outstanding contribution to the field of hematology. The award will be presented to Dr. Klein on Tuesday, December 13, during the 53rd ASH Annual Meeting and Exposition. ■