Regents Professor awarded Land-Grant Chair in Pediatric Oncology

Bruce Blazar, M.D., recently received the Children’s Cancer Research Fund Land-Grant Chair in Pediatric Oncology. His appointment began on March 18, 2013.

Bruce is a wonderful researcher and scientist who has done very important things for bone marrow transplant. Joseph Neglia, M.D., M.P.H.

This chair was established in 1988 for its inaugural holder, John Kersey, M.D. In this role, Kersey was able to conduct research on bone marrow transplantation and the basic biology of childhood leukemia.

The selection of Blazar as the new chair last winter received great support from Kersey as well as the three medical advisors for the Children’s Cancer Research Fund: Brenda Weigel, M.D., M.Sc., Julie Ross, Ph.D., and John Wagner, M.D.

“Bruce is a wonderful researcher and scientist who has done very important things for bone marrow transplant, children’s cancer and, more broadly, many disorders that may be immune-based,” says Joseph Neglia, M.D., M.P.H., head of the Department of Pediatrics. “He truly embodies the spirit of discovery, service, and clinical skill we really look for in our faculty.”

Blazar is a valued member of the Department of Pediatrics and has been on the faculty since 1985. He is currently the Principal Investigator of the University of Minnesota’s Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA) from the National Institutes of Health and he was recently elected as a member of the Institute of Medicine.

Blazar is known for his work on the role of the immune system in bone marrow transplantation and the immune system in models of disease. His work has led to the therapeutic delivery of regulatory t-cells in patients.

The considerable work of Blazar has been recognized and will be indefinitely supported through conference of this chair. Allocation of these resources will mean he can take his research program in a new direction, fund additional scientists, develop preliminary research for new studies, and continue to contribute greatly to the body of scientific knowledge related to pediatric oncology. It’s an opportunity for Bruce to do more for science at the University of Minnesota.