Initiatives 2017-06-12T17:19:14+00:00

Jon Pritchard Award

The Jon Pritchard Award, formerly known as the Artemis Fellowship is named in memory of Dr. Pritchard. It is granted annually to one or two young applicants as another means of promoting and expanding the Symposium’s ideals. The Pritchard awardee(s) are selected by a designated committee, following a review of applications.

Fellowship winners are provided a platform to present their work at the Symposium. Funds awarded through this fellowship cover travel costs of airfare, taxi in Greece, lodging and meals during the meeting.

If interested apply here: Jon Pritchard Award

What is the Artemis Association?

The Artemis Association is a charitable organization based in Greece and linked closely to the Nikolas Symposium, supporting families and relatives of patients diagnosed with Histiocytic diseases as well as fostering research on the causes of the disorders. Established in 1994, the Artemis Association is a non-profit and is named after Artemis, an eighteen-month old girl who passed away from multi-system Langerhans Cell Histiocytosis.

The association comprises of doctors, parents, patients, relatives and friends. Its objectives include supporting patients and their families, motivating and funding international research focused on identifying the pathogenesis of the condition and keeping hospitals informed on the latest treatments and developments.

Research Funding

The Nikolas Symposium further supports the examination of Histiocytic disorders by funding research initiatives together with Histio UK and the Artemis Association. As published in Nature magazine, the Nikolas Symposium has made decisive contributions to LCH research on multiple occasions.

In 2005, the Symposium contributed to a £150,000 fund to support a major three year research project at the University of Lausanne, Switzerland, led by Professor Hans Acha-Orbea. The project’s aim was to identify genes that are switched on when normal dendritic cells become tumors.

In 2009, the Nikolas Symposium supported a £220,954 grant to fund a ground-breaking project at the Institute of Child Health at University College London. Using a mouse model the project investigated how to introduce a normal Perforin gene – the gene most commonly affected in inherited HLH – into white blood cells.

Expanding on the success of the methods developed during the project, professors Bobby Gaspar and Adrian Thrasher along with Dr. Marlene Carmo, are now planning to develop this form of gene therapy to restore normal immune function in patients suffering from HLH [Hemophagocytic lymphohistiocytosis]

In 2012 the Nikolas Symposium committed funds to a collaborative project costing over £327,000 at the Center for Molecular and Cellular Biology of Inflammation, Kings College London and at the Institute of Cellular Medicine, Newcastle, led by Prof. Frederic Geissmann and Prof. Matthew Collin. This project will build on the recent important discovery of a genetic mutation in half of LCH samples tested.

This mutation (BRAF V600E), found in several human tumor types, alters the transmission of signals from the cell surface to the nucleus. In their project, Professors Geissmann and Collin are exploring how the mutation affects the behaviour of Langerhans cells and whether it is found in other types in LCH patients.

Career Award

The Nikolas Symposium rewards scientists, researchers and medical practitioners with a lifetime achievement award. The Career Award is given annually during the course of the Symposium.

Some of the former recipients are: Professor Barrett Rollins (2017), Dr. Bob Arceci and Maarten Egeler (2016), Dr. Joh Pritchard (2015), Dr. Hugh Perry (2014), Dr. Abul Abbas (2013), Dr. Ron Jaffe (2012), Dr. Ralph Steinman (2011), Dr. Peter Beverley (2010), Dr. Mark Nesbit (2009), Dr. Blaise Favara (2008) and Dr. Dan D’Angio (2007).

The Nikolas Symposium would like to thank all those who continuously support this quest for a rational cure.