The Fellow Award recognizes current members of the SIVB who have been active members for at least 10 years. A Fellow has made outstanding contributions in their area of specialization or discipline to include research, teaching, and administration in public, government, academic, or private industry activities. The Society for In Vitro Biology honored Barbara B. Doonan, Todd J. Jones, J. Denry Sato, and Guy Smagghe, with the SIVB Fellow Awards. Information on additional award winners will be provided in future issues of the In Vitro Report.


J. Denry Sato, D. Phil

Dr. J. Denry Sato, Brighton, England

Dr. J. Denry Sato, D.Phil was nominated by the Vertebrate and Toxicology Sections and awarded Fellow status to the Society For In Vitro Biology (SIVB) for his pioneering and significant in vitro biology contributions to the development of therapeutic products and stem cell research. Most significantly, in collaboration with Drs. Tomoyuki Kawamoto and Gordon H. Sato (a past President of the TCA), Dr. Sato produced and characterized a neutralizing monoclonal antibody to the human EGF receptor that is an FDA approved therapeutic (cetuximab) for advanced colorectal cancer and head and neck cancer. This pioneering work also led to the development of the first serum-free medium that would support the survival and proliferation of mouse myeloma cell lines and their hybridoma derivates, which were cholesterol auxotrophs owing to a deficiency in activity of the enzyme 3-ketosteriod reductase in cholesterol biosynthesis.

Dr. Sato received his undergraduate degree in biology from the University of Sussex, England and his doctoral degree in genetics from the University of Oxford, England. He was a postdoctoral fellow with Dr. Gordon H Sato, Cancer Center, University of California San Diego and a research fellow in Molecular Genetics with Dr. Keiichi Itakura, Beckman Research Institute, City of Hope, CA. Dr. Sato currently serves as Investigator, Mt Desert Island Biological Laboratory, Salisbury Cove, ME and Adjunct Associate Professor, Department of Biochemistry, Microbiology and Molecular Biology, University of Maine. He has held prestigious positions as Senior Scientist, W. Alton Jones Cell Science Center, Lake Placid, NY and Deputy Director, National Stem Cell Resource, American Type Cell Culture (ATCC), Manassas, VA.

Dr. Sato’s original basic and applied research in the development of serum-free media is highlighted in several issued and pending patents as well as in significant publications. In addition, he has mentored and trained many graduate students, postdoctoral fellows and visiting scientists.

Dr. Sato has been an active SIVB member since 1987 serving on the Program, Nominating and Publications Committees, as well as In Vitro Animal Associate Editor. He is currently Editor-in-Chief, In Vitro Cellular and Developmental Biology. In addition to supporting numerous scientific Congress symposiums, Dr. Sato has been instrumental in maintaining and supporting the SIVB international scientific relations with the European and Japanese Tissue Culture Association. In this capacity, Dr. Denry Sato has demonstrated and is respected by his peers for his scientific and leadership roles in the Society For In Vitro Biology.

It is an honor to have been part of the successful Fellow nomination for Dr. J. Denry Sato. Dr. Sato is a humble and quiet scientist with a sense of humor and a dedicated quest for ethical scientific inquiry. He has merited the Society Fellow designation for his contributions and dedication to in vitro product and therapeutic advances in biotechnology and medicine.

As SIVB Chair of the History Society and Past President (2002-2004), I would be remiss in not mentioning the roles of Drs. Gordon and his son J. Denry Sato in the pioneering of in vitro biology for the advancement of medicine, science and humanity. I was introduced to Gordon Sato in 1986 at the Fourth Decennial Review Cell and Tissue Culture International Conference, Hershey, PA. This conference on the “Molecular Mechanisms in the Regulation of cell Behavior” was hosted by the Tissue Culture Association, now the Society for In Vitro Biology. In addition to Dr. Keith Porter, Dr. Gordon Sato was a Conference keynote speaker where he presented the basis for the Manzanar Project. The concept of Manazar would continue to be his lifetime project to utilize low-tech biotechnology methods as solutions to global poverty, hunger and environmental pollution.

During 1983-1993, Gordon Sato continued to pursue global biotechnology ventures, including the Manzanar Project as Director of the W. Alton Cell Science Center, Inc. Through his efforts, the Center acquired worldwide recognition for contributions in basic in vitro research and biotechnology. The contributions of many Center researchers, to include Dr Denry Sato, served as the development of pivotal cell culture technologies and translational clinical applications in human health and disease. Gordon Sato also served as President (1984-1986) of the Tissue Culture Association and as Editor-in-Chief, In Vitro Cellular and Developmental Biology (1987-1991). In 2002, Dr. Gordon Sato was recognized with the SIVB Lifetime Achievement Award. Although, J. Denry Sato followed the scientific path forged by his father, he has demonstrated and merited his own scientific contributions and recognition as an in vitro biology pioneer.

During my presidency, J. Denry Sato along with Wallace (Wally) L. McKeehan, Editor-in-Chief (1991-2006) In Vitro Developmental and Cellular Biology (IVDCB) and Dr. Tetsuji Okamoto supported me in building strong Society education and publication collaborations with the Japanese Tissue Culture Association. This international scientific relationship, under Dr. Okamoto as President of the Japanese Tissue Culture Association (JTCA), many JTCA colleagues and J. Denry as IVDCB Editor-in-Chief continues today as a viable resource for Society membership, Congress meeting symposia and publications.

In addition to J. Denry Sato receiving SIVB Fellow status, his work has been recognized with numerous other awards to include the SIVB Senior Investigator Award, Institute of General Medical Sciences Research Award and Fellowships from the Japan Society for Promotion of Science. Dr. J. Denry Sato’s scientific contributions to the field of in vitro biology are clearly above the standard mission and scientific focus of the SIVB to foster the exchange of knowledge related to the in vitro cellular components and the development and applications of significance to science and society. It is my pleasure to recognize and highlight Dr. J. Denry Sato’s accomplishment and Fellow Award status.

Dr. Sandra L. Schneider
SIVB Past President (2002-2004) & Chair History Society