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3 for 2 Offer SELECTBIO Conferences Flow Cytometry for Studying Exosomes and Extracellular Vesicles - FREE WebinarEmerging Technologies & Paradigms for In Vitro Dx Europe 2024Innovations in Microfluidics & 3D-Printing Europe 2024Flow Chemistry European Summit 2024Extracellular Vesicles (EVs) & Nanoparticles 2024: Diagnostics, Delivery, TherapeuticsePoster Award Prize

Working with Extracellular Vesicles (EVs): Research Methodologies, Biomarker Cargo & Diagnostics Development


Leonora Balaj, Instructor, Mass General Hospital (MGH)/Harvard Medical School

Leonora Balaj is Instructor in Neurosurgery at Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School. She received her B.S. in Biology from the University of Bridgeport in CT and her PhD in Medicine from the VU University Amsterdam, The Netherlands. During her graduate studies she worked in the laboratory of Dr. Breakefield at the Massachusetts General Hospital in the department of Neurology. Her work focuses on the characterization of brain tumor derived vesicles as a tool for cell-cell communication as well as a source for biomarkers.

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Johan Skog, Chief Scientific Officer, Exosome Diagnostics Inc

Dr. Skog currently serves as chief scientific officer of Exosome Diagnostics where he is leading the research and development efforts for biofluid diagnostics using exosomes in diseases such as cancer, metabolic and neurodegenerative diseases. He is the primary inventor of Exosome Diagnostics' core technology and, in particular, blood-based genetic diagnostics of cancer. Dr. Skog made the discovery that tumor-shed exosomes (microvesicles) contain genetic information of the tumor. He showed that these microvesicles serve to deliver messages to other cells inducing changes favorable to the proliferation of cancer cells. He demonstrated that these tumor exosomes are released into the bloodstream and that they can be isolated and studied for genetic mutations (Skog et al. Nature Cell Biology 2008; 10: 1470-1476). Prior to the start of the company Exosome Diagnostics, Dr. Skog was working at Massachusetts General Hospital/Harvard Medical School where he was studying the role of tumor stem cells in gliomas and later tumor derived exosomes, including their content of RNA biomarkers and transposable elements such as endogenous retroviruses. He also showed that gene therapy vectors can be incorporated into microvesicles and be used as a “stealth” vector with changed tropisms (Maguire et al. Molecular Therapy 2012 Feb 7). Dr. Skog received his PhD at the Department of Virology, Umea University, Sweden, working on novel gene therapy vectors for treatment of gliomas.

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