Clinician-scientist Kipp Weiskopf appointed as a Valhalla Fellow at Whitehead Institute
The prestigious Whitehead Fellows Program enables extraordinarily talented young scientists to launch independent labs right out of graduate school or medical residency. Recognizing the Program’s capacity to give uniquely skilled biomedical investigators a head-start on pursuing their scientific visions, the Valhalla Foundation underwrites two Whitehead Fellowships.
Kipp Weiskopf—who is identifying ways to prompt macrophages to fight cancer—has been named a Valhalla Fellow.
Having earned an MD/PhD from Stanford University School of Medicine, Weiskopf joined the Institute as a Whitehead Fellow in 2019 and also serves as a fellow in medical oncology at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. Anti-cancer therapies based on his research are currently being tested in multiple phase 1 and phase 2 clinical trials. Since the emergence of SARS-Cov2, he has also pursued a parallel initiative: identifying drugs that suppress the hyperactive macrophage activity that occurs in severe COVID-19. Longer term, he sees potential for using macrophage suppressing drugs to treat autoimmune conditions such as hemolytic anemia, rheumatoid arthritis and multiple sclerosis.
“Basic biomedical research enables us to leverage new knowledge in unanticipated—even paradoxical—but beneficial ways,” Weiskopf says. “Scientists like me are lucky to have the support of far-sighted philanthropists who recognize the long-term importance of the fundamental work we do.”
“One of Valhalla’s objectives is to accelerate pioneering work by funding promising early-career biomedical scientists at institutions that can nurture their talents,” explains Valhalla Foundation co-founder Signe Ostby. “The Whitehead Fellows Program is a model for enabling young researchers to become world-class scientific leaders.”
Whitehead Institute director Ruth Lehmann says, “We are grateful for the Foundation’s continuing support for visionary young researchers like Kipp.”
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