Published: 01-06-2015 13:35 | Updated: 01-06-2015 13:38

HERM praised for its first years

It's been 3,5 years since the Center for Hematology and Regenerative Medicine, HERM, was formed and now, on its own initiative, the center has commissioned an external group for evaluation.

- In this short time, most projects that were started since the inauguration of HERM are yet to be published, but we think it's important to get an early temperature measurement on our strategy and to open up to scientific scrutiny and criticism, says Eva Hellström-Lindberg, chair of HERM.

The external group that evaluated HERM consisted of Klas Kärre, Professor of immunology at KI and chairman of the Cancer Society's research committee, David Scadden from the MGH Center for Regenerative Medicine, Boston, USA, Ana Cumano from the Institut Pasteur, Paris, France and Hartmut Döhner from the University of Ulm, Germany. The group went through an extensive written material about HERM and on 21 May, they spent a full day at HERM when they met with the center's management and all group leaders.

- We had two main purposes with the evaluation: to evaluate in particular our three junior group leaders who have a special grant from WIRM (The Wallenberg Institute for Regenerative Medicine) for their first four years with us, and also to make a review of HERM regarding strategies and focus , platforms and recruitment plans, Eva explains.

What was the result of the evaluation?

- It was a very good evaluation with constructive criticism. The external group thought that we have made wise choices to get our research environment together and that we have a good strategy for translational projects. We also received praise for having invested our resources on developing one advanced platform; flow cytometry, and for collaborating with other groups when it comes to other platforms, says Eva adds:

- We also got wise counsel from the group on how we should proceed with HERM, among other things, we need to think through and be clearer in our focus for the future.

What do you think are the main strengths of HERM?

- That we are synergistic in our skills, each group has the potential to interact with each other. And we have a strong presence in the hospital's clinic Hematology Center. It gives us access to a large patient material which is important for translational projects, says Eva Hellström-Lindberg.

About HERM

The Center for Hematology and Regenerative Medicine, HERM, was established during 2011-12. Today HERM has about 100 affiliated reserchers. It is a translational research environment dedicated to hematology, immunology, stem cell biology and regenerative medicine.

Learn more about HERM