Girgis Obaid and Srivallessha Mallidi Received 2019 Early Investigator Awards at the 17th World Congress of the International Photodynamic Association

Vancouver, British Columbia, CANADA

Boston, USA, July 11, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) --

At the 17th International Photodynamic Association World Congress in Boston, Massachusetts, Dr. Girgis Obaid and Dr. Srivalleesha Mallidi were recognized with the 2019 Early Investigator Awards.

The IPA Early Investigator Award recognizes young researchers and leaders who are up-and-coming ambassadors of photodynamics with fewer than 10 years into their photodynamic therapy (PDT) careers. Recipients demonstrate a commitment and passion for high quality research, creativity, resourcefulness, and integrity, and who in the pursuit of learning, are advancing and promoting PDT and serving the PDT community.

Dr. Girgis Obaid is a chemist with doctoral training in biofunctionalized gold nanoparticles for targeted PDT.  He currently researches under Professor Tayyaba Hasan at the Wellman Center for Photomedicine, Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School. Since joining the Wellman Center, he has focused on developing complex, clinically relevant nanoplatforms for molecular targeted PDT-based combination regimens. Dr. Obaid has also implemented intelligent design and development framework for patient-tailoring of targeted nanomedicines for the treatment of head and neck cancer. His research offers strongly influential insights and solutions into the field of molecular targeted nanomedicines for PDT-based combination therapies. Dr. Obaid makes significant contributions to the PDT community, through his volunteer efforts involving chairing post-doc subcommittees, regular contributions to international PDT-related conferences, mentoring junior researchers and serving as a reviewer for multiple journals.

Dr. Srivalleesha Mallidi, an electronics engineer by training, is an independent academic researcher and Assistant Professor, Department of Biomedical Engineering, Tufts University. Her work focuses primarily on the clinical translation of photoacoustic image-guided PDT. She has made numerous contributions, merging interdisciplinary fields such as nanoengineering and biomedical imaging technology, and has published 24 peer-reviewed publications (16 as first author) and 4 book chapters as first author. Dr. Mallidi has won several poster presentations at national and international conferences. Dr. Mallidi is a significant contributor to the PDT community. She serves as a reviewer for many journals in biomedical optics and PDT and frequently volunteers her time, as session chair, at a number of PDT conferences, including the IPA World Congress Poster Session Organizing Committee. She currently serves on the Program Committee for the IEEE Photonics Symposium and SPIE Photonics West PDT Conference.

IPA World Congress

The Boston World Congress was the 17th conference held by the International Photodynamic Association, marking 34 years of this global meeting. The IPA World Congresses, held every two years, are the leading PDT meetings bringing together members of the global photodynamic community to advance scientific and clinical research relating to photodiagnosis and photodynamic therapies. The Boston World Congress was led by Congress Chair and IPA President Dr. Tayyaba Hasan, Professor of Dermatology at the Wellman Center for Photomedicine, Harvard Medical School (HMS) and a Professor of Health Sciences and Technology (Harvard-MIT) and had record attendance with representatives from 33 countries.  The 2021 IPA World Congress will be hosted in Moscow, Russia and the 2023 IPA World Congress will be held in Shanghai, China.

About Photodynamic Therapy

Photodynamic Therapy (PDT) is a combination therapy involving light activated photosensitizers to diagnose and treat various types and stages of cancers and pre-cancers, macular degeneration and multidrug-resistant infections involving bacteria, viruses and fungi. First developed in the 1980s, PDT has demonstrated superior patient outcomes with considerable cost savings. Over the past 30 years, millions of patients globally have been successfully treated with PDT.

About the International Photodynamic Association

The International Photodynamic Association (IPA) was founded in 1986 to support and endorse the scientific advancement and clinical development of photodynamic therapy and photodiagnosis. With members and associates from over 30 countries, the IPA represents a truly global community consisting of prominent international scientists, clinicians and translational researchers, healthcare professionals and students across academic, hospital, government and private sector organizations. The IPA promotes the study of diagnosis and treatment using light-activated photosensitizers and disseminates scientific information to its members, the research community, and to the community at large. The IPA organizes a biennial World Congress around the world, providing members and non-members a unique opportunity to share and learn more about global developments relating specifically to photodynamic therapy and photodiagnosis. 

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Dr. Srivalleesha Mallidi (center-left) and Dr. Girgis Obaid (center-right) receiving 2019 Early Investigator Awards from IPA President, Dr. Luis Arnaut (left) and IPA Past-President, Dr. Tayyaba Hassan (right).

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