MWRI will host the inaugural summit and award the $1 million Magee Prize in Pittsburgh on Oct. 9-10, 2018.
PITTSBURGH, September 24, 2018 – Magee-Womens Research Institute (MWRI) – the nation’s largest independent research institute devoted exclusively to women’s health – will launch the inaugural Magee-Womens Research Summit on Oct. 9 and award the $1 million Magee Prize, which is funded by the Richard King Mellon Foundation.
From renowned researchers to the Rwandan health minister, the summit will convene leaders in reproductive biology, women’s health, precision medicine, public health and global health advocacy. These international experts, representing countries both in the developed and developing world, will share groundbreaking research in reproductive sciences, early human development and the impact of sex differences on human health and disease. The summit will culminate with expert crowdsourcing ideas on how to move women’s health to the forefront of medical research.
Summit Agenda and Program
Keynotes, spotlight talks, panel discussion and interactive breakout sessions will be organized within three wellness pillars: the origins of wellness and disease, sex differences beyond X and Y, and aging reimagined in the age of precision medicine. More information on the pillars can be found here.
“At MWRI, our vision is 9 to 90 so we are embarking on a robust research strategy toward the influence of the nine months of pregnancy on disease risk over the subsequent 90-plus years,” said Yoel Sadovsky, M.D., MWRI executive director. “We are launching this initiative at the inaugural Magee-Womens Research Summit next month. The nine months of pregnancy represent a key part of the human lifespan that hasn’t been extensively studied, yet research shows that biological, medical, nutritional, environmental and social determinants of health coalesce during this period, programming both mom and baby for a course after birth that shapes life expectancy, wellness and disease risk for a lifetime.”
Panel discussions will address advances in revolutionizing fertility, the influences of the preconception and pregnancy periods on the health and life changes of the next generation, and accelerating medical discoveries to reach patient populations. Three advocacy breakout sessions will include patients’ perspectives on infant and maternal mortality, the opioid epidemic and its impact on mothers and infants, and the critical importance of creating a lasting movement that ushers women’s health to the forefront of international attention.
The $1 million Magee Prize will be awarded Oct. 9 during the summit’s Magee Prize Dinner by breast cancer survivor and former CBS News chief foreign affairs correspondent Lara Logan. The prize will spur the development of breakthrough reproductive sciences and women’s health research from international teams of scientists that may not fit a traditional National Institutes of Health funding model.
“Most medical prizes are awarded after a discovery or achievement has been made,” said Carrie Coghill, MWRI board chair. “The Magee Prize was designed to accelerate discovery – by funding a big idea supported by a global, collaborative research team that will deliver the best possible outcome of a high-risk, high-reward medical innovation. This bold initiative has the potential to change the course of women’s health and, in turn, humankind.”
The summit’s opening keynote will be delivered by one of the world’s foremost biotech pioneers, Leroy Hood, M.D., who is known for building the scientific tools to enable precision medicine advancement. His keynote, “21st Century Medicine: Exploring New Frontiers in Women’s Health,” will focus on proactive approaches to improving wellness for the individual; creating medicine that is predictive, preventive, personalized and participatory; and reversing rising cost trends. Other notable talks include:
- Subra Suresh, president and distinguished professor, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore: Opportunities for Biomedical Research and Healthcare at the Intersections of Engineering, Sciences and Medicine
- Marcia Stefanick, professor of medicine, Stanford University School of Medicine: Why Sex & Gender Matter in the Precision Health of Women
- Ralph Snyderman, James B. Duke Professor of Medicine and chancellor emeritus, Duke University School of Medicine: Personalized Health Care: From Theory to Practice
- Dennis Lo, director of the Li Ka Shing Institute of Health Sciences, Hong Kong: Pushing Forward the Diagnostic Applications and Biological Understanding of Circulating Nucleic Acids
The Magee-Womens Research Summit will also serve as the launchpad for the Magee-Womens STEM Initiative. The goal of the STEM initiative is to engage students to study and help solve health issues affecting women and babies in their communities.