2017 Young Scientist Award Winner Maciej Parys

Maciej Parys (at right), recipient of the 2017 ABCD Young Scientist Award flanked by ABCD chair Karin Moestl (centre) and Jean-Christoph Thibault (Boehringer Ingelheim), who presented the award

The 2017 ABCD Young Scientist Award funded by Boehringer Ingelheim Animal Health (formerly known as AMYSA) was presented to Dr Maciej Parys (32), originally from Poland and currently working at the Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies of the University of Edinburgh, UK, for his work on the immunomodulatory properties of feline mesenchymal stem cells (MSC).

The award (1000€) was presented to Maciej Parys by the ABCD at the congress of the International Society of Feline Medicine, held from 28 June to 2 July 2017 in Brighton, UK. The 2016 recipients of the AMYSA award were Vito Colella (University of Bari) and Mirja Nolff (University of Munich).

Maciej Parys: the immunomodulatory properties of feline mesenchymal stem cells (MSC)

“Our studies have shown that feline MSC use a similar set of genes as human cells. This makes inflammatory disorders in cats a reliable model for studying MSC therapy,” Dr Parys explained.

“We have also proven that feline MSC are able to block the proliferation of stimulated peripheral mononuclear blood cells, which further supports their use in the treatment of immune-mediated diseases.”

“Dr Parys’s work may be of importance for a wide field of inflammatory and immune-mediated diseases, and not only in cats, commented Dr Karin Moestl, chair of the European Advisory Board on Cat Diseases (ABCD), adding that this year’s applications were of particularly high quality.

“Dr Parys provided excellent work and this award recognizes a scientist with very promising career, added Dr Jean-Christophe Thibault, Boehringer Ingelheim’s Global Technical Director for Companion Animal vaccines.

ABCD & Boehringer Ingelheim Young Scientist Awards

‘Our company is strongly committed to supporting independent research in the field of feline infectious diseases, and the Young Scientist Award represents a wonderful collaboration between Boehringer Ingelheim and the ABCD, said Dr Jean-Philippe Tronel, director of the global technical services for pet vaccines at Boehringer Ingelheim.

‘We warmly congratulate this year’s winners and encourage everyone to check out the previous winners, most of whom are still very active researchers and contributing to the health of our beloved cats.’

The Young Scientist Award, created in 2008, is presented annually to young scientists in veterinary or biomedical sciences, who have made an original contribution in the field of feline infectious diseases and/or immunology.

The ABCD and Boehringer Ingelheim Young Scientist Award, created in 2008, is funded by Boehringer Ingelheim and is presented to a young scientist in veterinary or biomedical sciences, who has made an original contribution in the field of feline infectious diseases and/or immunology. Applicants should have published their findings in a journal listed in PubMed or Web of Science or have had them accepted by another recognised assessing body.

Candidates should be based in Europe, have completed a veterinary or biomedical curriculum, and be under 35 years of age at the time of application. Applications in the fields of both basic and applied sciences are welcome.

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