Today is my first day at RSRT, and to say that I am excited would be an understatement. I have been following the Rett field for over a decade and to now have the opportunity to dedicate myself completely to this effort is something I’m really looking forward to.
With all of the recent advances in science, there are new opportunities to better understand neurodevelopment disorders such as Rett Syndrome. The emergence of powerful new technologies has provided remarkable tools that make it possible for scientists to define how mutations in MECP2 affect brain development and function. Simultaneous technological advances in chemical sciences, gene therapy and gene editing are leading to therapeutic strategies that, for the first time, have the potential to correct the root cause of Rett Syndrome.
These breakthrough advances are certainly reason for optimism and hope. However, there is much work yet to be done to successfully fill the gap between basic science and development of therapeutics. It is exactly this gap in therapeutic development where I have the deepest expertise and greatest ability to contribute. In my experience, future progress will demand close collaborations that integrate numerous disciplines. Under Monica’s leadership, RSRT has pioneered these team efforts, fostering and supporting vibrant communities of dedicated scientists, clinicians and families in collaborations to fill knowledge gaps and break down barriers. My first priority will be to build upon these strong collaborations while leveraging my knowledge, expertise and network to maximize researchers' access to cutting edge technologies. I also intend to work with the RSRT community to implement additional creative experimental approaches, novel technologies and new ways of conducting scientific explorations, both in basic science as well as clinical research.
I am honored to join the RSRT team and look forward to the opportunity to build upon the strong foundation already established. It’s thanks to all of you—families, donors, and Rett organizations in this country and around the world—that we are poised to take the research to the next stage. Working together I’m confident that we can fill knowledge gaps and accelerate the translation of scientific discoveries to improve the lives of your loved ones. I look forward to interacting with many of you in the weeks and months to come. In the meantime, if you’d like to reach me my email is firstname.lastname@example.org.