Updated: Sep 21, 2020
The 2019 Lifetime Achievement Award is presented to Morton J. Cowan, MD.
Dr. Morton J. Cowan is the eleventh recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Pediatric Blood and Marrow Transplant Consortium (PBMTC). Dr. Cowan is being recognized for a career that exemplifies the mission to support research and education to improve the availability, safety and efficacy of hematopoietic cell transplantation and other cellular therapeutics for children and adolescents.
Dr. Cowan is an Emeritus Professor of Pediatrics at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) Benioff Children’s Hospital. He is world renowned for his research in primary immunodeficiency diseases, as well as the use of haploidentical SCT. He has been a pioneer in the field of pediatric BMT, performing the first transplant at UCSF for a child with SCID in 1982 and the first T-cell depleted transplant on the West Coast for a child with Leukemia. He was part of the team which mapped the genetic locus of the gene for Athabascan SCID (SCID-A) and identified the mutation in DCLRE1C responsible causing for SCID-A in Navajo and Apache children. He has had a long-standing dedication to the Navajo and Apache community, organizing annual clinics in Tuba City. In 2018, he performed the world’s first gene-corrected transplant for SCID-A. The capstone of his career has been working with DAIT-NIAID to organize the Primary Immune Deficiency Treatment Consortium, of which he was the Principal Investigator for its first decade. The PIDTC has published seminal retrospective and prospective data on key immune deficiencies undergoing BMT and is now running multi-center prospective trials.