Cancer immunotherapy has recently become a major promising treatment option for patients with malignant diseases. A Translational Cancer Immunotherapy Research Program has been initiated, linking the clinical facilities with the research laboratories. State-of-the-art core facilities such as an Immune Monitoring Platform, a Cellular Therapy Laboratory and a Clinical Cancer Trials Unit have been established to facilitate and monitor novel cancer therapies with a focus on immunotherapies. The immune platform consists of a functional cancer research laboratory featuring molecular biology and tissue culture facilities, including innovative technologies such as a digital cell imaging system, a multi-color cell analyzer with cell sorting capability, a multiplex profiling system, two-photon microscopy and a modular FDA-approved expansion system for T-cell and modified effector cell populations to treat cancer. The research team is conducting basic and translational research projects in collaboration with multiple national and international research institutions. The main focus of the current projects is on cancer immunology, immunotherapy and cancer genomics.
The Hamad Dental Center entered into a research collaboration with the Forsyth Dental Institute from Boston, US, one of the world’s leading dental institutes. The establishment of this research partnership enables Hamad’s dentistry to support Hamad’s academic health vision. Membership of the Forsyth Corporate Partnership Program provides an important element in developing robust clinical, research and educational programs, which will work towards transforming oral health services in Qatar to meet the needs of the local population.
More than 400 researchers and senior leaders from across Hamad attended Annual Research Day 2016 in December. Organized by our Medical Research Center, the theme for this year’s event was ‘Bridging the Gap between Research and Innovation in Patient Care’. Annual Research Day 2016 featured many new awards, recognizing the outstanding contributions of our researchers. The nominations for the prestigious Distinction in Research awards were scientifically and strategically assessed by international reviewers. Applications in other categories were assessed by reviewers in Qatar.
During 2016, Hamad’s Medical Research Center put forward a number of research proposals to the Qatar National Research Fund, the research funding agency for Qatar Foundation. The Qatar National Research Fund aims to foster original, competitively selected research in a wide range of areas including engineering and technology, physical and life sciences, medicine and humanities. In 2016, Hamad’s research investigators received six grant awards through the Qatar National Research Fund, totaling around $3,500,000.