Gerald O. Pao, PhD

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Gerald Pao

Stem Cells: From Bench to Bedside
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Time: Friday Afternoon
Purpose: To provide A general overview of current trends in stem cell research and the prospects of clinical application of derived therapies.
Distinguish the types of stem cells in existence and their potential application in clinical practice.   
Review of the main lines of research and the clinical hurdles in their clinical application   
Identify potentially fraudulent stem cell treatments currently offered.


Current Positions:
Research Associate, Salk Institute for Biological Studies
Investigator, California Institute of Regenerative Medicine Back to Conference Faculty List

Dr. Gerald Pao was born in Madrid, Spain to ethnically Chinese and Eurasian parents and was educated in the German educational system until the end of high school. Since the age of 12, he has had a keen interest of molecular biology and it was at this age that he was guided by professor Gines Morata of the molecular biology institute at the autonomous university of Madrid (Universidad Autonoma de Madrid). After the German high school completion exam (Abitur) he moved to California to attend the University of California San Diego where he majored in molecular biology. While an undergraduate he published several papers on the subject of molecular evolution. Subsequently Dr. Pao studied and performed research at the Fred Hutchinson cancer Research Center  and the University of Washington in Seattle before completing his PhD at the Salk Institute in La Jolla, California in the laboratory of Dr Inder Verma. During his PhD he was awarded a fellowship of the Chapman foundation and subsequently he has been a fellow of the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine for three years. During his PhD Dr. Pao worked on the Breast and ovarian cancer gene BRCA1 and has subsequently worked on various areas which include: Neural stem cells in the development of the brain, silencing of retroviruses in embryonic stem cells, development of lent viral and retro-viral vectors for the genetic modification of embryonic stem cells, as well as mechanisms of silencing and hetero-chromatin formation also in embryonic stem cells. In addition he has also won the inaugural Roche 1 Gigabase award, that has allowed him to initiate the investigation of salamander limb regeneration and the formation of regenerative stem cells that allow amphibians to regenerate amputated limbs in collaboration with the laboratory of Dr. Tony Hunter. This work was recently featured in the MIT technology review and in Scientific American magazines. Most recently Dr. Pao has been concentrating his research work on the relationship between gene silencing and the formation of pluripotent stem cells.
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