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Professor Massimo Dominici invited by WHO to join the International Committee for new drugs

Professor Massimo Dominici of the Department of  Medical and Surgical Sciences for Children ad Adults of the University of Modena and Reggio Emilia, Director of the Complex Structure of Oncology of the University Hospital of Modena, has been invited by the World Health Organisation (WHO) to join an international group of experts in charge of the ’"International Pharmacopoeia and Pharmaceutical Preparations". 

This scientific body has been assigned the delicate task of evaluating new drugs and define their names in terms of active ingredients, based on their characteristics. AKA International Nonproprietary Names (INN), the committee is in charge of helping identify pharmaceutical substances or active pharmaceutical ingredients. Each INN is a unique name recognised at global level and publicly owned.

My task, together with other colleagues coming from the regulatory and academic world, - Unimore professor Massimo Dominici explains - will be to evaluate new drugs for cell and genic therapies within the new-born Cell and Gene Therapy Working Group”. 

This need of the WHO arose from a constantly increasing number of pharmaceutical products based on cells that are likely to enter the market in the next years, in particular in the oncology field, where professor Massimo Dominici has gained a  well-deserved national and international popularity. 

A recent and reliable survey (https://www.alliancerm.org/sector-report/2019-annual-report/) shows the existence of over 1,000 products under clinical experimentation, one hundred of them being in an advanced phase (phase 3). This suggests that cell therapies will be used in clinics in the next 5 years.

As of today – professor Dominici points out - there are about fifty products that have been approved for clinical use, about ten of which are based on mesenchymal cells and three on CAR-T lymphocytes, namely cells that have been activated to strongly react against blood cancer such as leukaemia and lymphomas. At the University Hospital of Modena, together with my research team we are carrying out research programmes based on CAR-T and mesenchymal cells to fight solid cancer, and I believe that current activities may have a clinical impact also on us”.


He was born in Lodi in 1972. In 1996, he was awarded the University Degree cum Laude in Medicine and Surgery in Pavia. He completed an Internship at the Institute for Haematology of the University of Wien (Austria). In 2000, he became a specialist in Haematology cum Laude at the University of Ferrara, and also post-doctoral fellow at the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital di Memphis (US). In 2005, he arrived at the University of Modena and Reggio Emilia as university researcher in Medical oncology, becoming head of the Cell Therapy Laboratory. Since June 2020, he has been Full Professor of Oncology and Director of the School of Specialisation in Oncology. He is the founder and scientific head of the biocompatibility laboratory of the Technopole of Mirandola. He is the author of 170 manuscripts, 2 books, 3 chapters of books with over 26,000 quotations. He has been invited to over 170 seminars. He has carried out thirty-nine financed projects and registered 12 patents. He founded the university start-up Rigenerand srl. He is a member of several national and international scientific societies and of boards in Scientific and non-profit Medical Foundations. He was elected first non US president of the International Society for Cell and Gene Therapy - ISCT. He is an editor and reviewer for international magazines for public and private entities for research financing. Together with his research team, he develops cell and genic therapies for cancer.

Categorie: International - english

Articolo pubblicato da: Ufficio Stampa Unimore - ufficiostampa@unimore.it il 04/11/2020