Remembering Earl Davie, Clive Kearon, and more

Earl Warren Davie, PhD

Remembering Earl Davie, PhD (1927 – 2020)

Biochemist Earl Warren Davie, PhD, died on June 6, 2020, at the age of 92.

Dr. Davie was Professor Emeritus of Biochemistry at the University of Washington (UW). He joined the faculty of UW in 1962 and served as Chair of Biochemistry from 1975 to 1984. The research team he led at UW focused on isolating and expressing genes coding for blood clotting factors. In 1981, he co-founded the biotechnology company Zymogenetics, which was acquired by Bristol-Myers Squibb in 2010.

In 1964, Dr. Davie described the “waterfall cascade” sequence for blood clotting, a model that he published together with hematologist Oscar Ratnoff, MD. This model has been used for a generation to teach students the biochemical events leading to fibrin formation.

In 1993, Dr. Davie was awarded ASH’s prestigious Henry M. Stratton Medal for his outstanding contributions to the field of hematology. He received numerous other honors, such as the Robert P. Grant Medal from the International Society on Thrombosis and Hemostasis in 1989 and the Distinguished Achievement Award from the American Heart Association in 1995. Since 2007, the Centre for Blood Research at the University of British Columbia has held an annual Earl W. Davie Symposium in his honor.

Dr. Davie was passionate about education, establishing multiple scholarship programs, such as the Donald J. Hanahan Scholarship at UW in honor of his former professor and co-researcher.

He is survived by his wife of 68 years, three children, four grandchildren, and one great-
grandchild.

Sources: The Seattle Times, June 14, 2020; The Huddle, June 10, 2020; The Vallee Foundation; University of Washington Department of Biochemistry.


Clive Kearon, MD, PhD

Remembering Clive Kearon, MD, PhD (1957 – 2020)

Thrombosis specialist Clive Kearon, MD, PhD, passed away on June 3, 2020 at the age of 63.

Dr. Kearon spent 35 years at McMaster University in Ontario, Canada, serving as a Professor of Medicine and later as Director of the Clinician Investigator Program. He was also a consultant with the Clinical Thromboembolism Service at Hamilton Health Sciences’ Juravinski Cancer Centre. Dr. Kearon’s work focused on optimizing clinical trials for the diagnosis and treatment of thromboembolic disease.

Born in Ireland, Dr. Kearon immigrated to Canada where he worked as an investigator for the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) and the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada. He received two awards from the CIHR for his mentorship in the design of randomized controlled trials, as well as the 2009 Investigator Recognition Award from the International Society on Thrombosis and Haemostasis.

“Others will speak of his impactful contributions to thrombosis. There were many. I will speak of him as a mentor,” Lori Linkins, MD, Associate Professor of Hematology and Thromboembolism at McMaster, wrote on Twitter. “Whenever I came to him with a question, he would drop what he was doing to answer me. He always made time for me. And over 25 years, he never made me feel stupid for asking.”

Menaka Pai, MD, also an Associate Professor of Hematology and Thromboembolism at McMaster, tweeted, “His kindness, generosity, and true understanding of what’s really important (family, friends, a good laugh, and dancing with wild abandon) will stay forever.”

Source: McMaster University faculty page; The Hamilton Spectator, June 6, 2020.


Andrew Roberts, MBBS, PhD

Andrew Roberts Receives Order of Australia for Outstanding Service to Medical Research

Andrew Roberts, MBBS, PhD, has received the Order of Australia, part of this year’s Queen’s Birthday honors, for his significant service to medical research, hematology, and cancer organizations. Dr. Roberts, who is deputy editor of the Blood journal, was also elected a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Science earlier this year.

Dr. Roberts serves as Laboratory Head and Joint Leader of the Cancer Research and Treatments Theme at the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research at the University of Melbourne. He also works as a clinical hematologist at The Royal Melbourne Hospital and Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre, and as Hematology Lead for Research Education at the Victorian Comprehensive Cancer Centre.

His work focuses on clinical trials of blood cancer therapeutics. He also conducts molecular research on leukemogenesis and lymphomagenesis, BCL2 inhibitors and BH3 mimetics, as well as on targeted-therapy and chemotherapy resistance.

Sources: Australian Academy of Science press release, June 8, 2020; Australian Academy of Health and Science press release, May 25, 2020; Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research staff directory.


Robert Bona, MD

Yale Cancer Center Names Robert Bona Inaugural Director of Benign Hematology

Yale Cancer Center has appoin­ted Robert Bona, MD, Professor of Medicine in Hematology and Director of the Benign Hematology Program at Smilow Cancer Hospital, effective July 1, 2020. He will also serve as Medical Direc­tor of the Hemophilia Treatment Center for the Pediatric Hematology & Oncology Program, and as a professor of medicine.

Dr. Bona has been a part-time member of the hematology department at Yale Cancer Center (YCC) for 3 years, in addition to his role as a founding faculty member at the Frank H. Netter School of Medicine at Quinnipiac University in North Haven, Connecticut. He previously served as the division chief and fellowship program director at the University of Connecticut School of Medicine.

“We look forward to working more closely with Dr. Bona to build a comprehensive program for patients with inherited and acquired blood diseases,” said Charles Fuchs, MD, MPH, director of YCC and Physician-in-Chief at Smilow.

Source: YCC press release, April 27, 2020.