We are pleased to launch the Melanoma Nano-Vaccine Campaign, a joint-fundraising initiative by Canadian Friends of Tel Aviv University (CFTAU) and the David Cornfield Melanoma Fund (DCMF) in support of the acceleration of Dr. Satchi-Fainaro’s groundbreaking nano-vaccine research.

Starting now and through the end of February, all funds raised through the Melanoma Nano-Vaccine Campaign will be matched by DCMF*.  

*to a maximum of $25,000

Melanoma Nano-Vaccine Research

Tel Aviv University is at the forefront of important melanoma research. In 2019, Professor Satchi-Fainaro and her team developed a nano-vaccine that successfully prevented and treated melanoma in mice. Published in the prestigious journal Nature Nanotechnology, this research is the first of its kind. Holding immense promise, the nano-vaccine approach could not only revolutionize the prevention and treatment of melanoma, but also serve as a foundation for the development of nano-vaccines for other cancers.


“The war against cancer in general, and melanoma in particular, has advanced over the years through a variety of treatment modalities, such as surgery, chemotherapy, radiation therapy and immunotherapy; but the vaccine approach, which has proven so effective against various viral diseases, has not materialized yet against cancer,” said Satchi-Fainaro.

“In our study, we have shown that it is possible to produce an effective nano-vaccine against melanoma and to sensitize the immune system to immunotherapies.”


Professor Ronit Satchi-Fainaro

Head, Cancer Research and Nanomedicine Laboratory
Head, TAU Kahn 3D Printing Initiative
Hermann and Kurt Lion Chair, Nanosciences and Nanotechnologies
Department of Physiology and Pharmacology, Sackler Faculty of Medicine

Our research opens the door to a completely new approach – the vaccine approach – for effective treatment of melanoma, even in the most advanced stages of the disease.”

Meet professor Satchi-Fainaro – click here…

Prof. Ronit Satchi-Fainaro (Ph.D.) is a Full Professor at Tel Aviv University, where she is head of the Cancer Research & Nanomedicine Laboratory, Head of the TAU Kahn 3D Printing Initiative and holds the Kurt and Herman Lion Chair in Nanosciences and Nanotechnologies.

She served as Chair of the Department of Physiology & Pharmacology at the Sackler Faculty of Medicine (2014-2018), as President of the Israeli Controlled Release Society (CRS) (2010-2015) and Chair of IACUC of Tel Aviv University (2013-2017). She received her B.Pharm. from the Hebrew University in Jerusalem in 1995 and her Ph.D. (Summa Cum Laude) in Polymer Chemistry and Cancer Nanomedicine from the University of London in 1999 with Prof. Ruth Duncan.

She then spent four years as Postdoctoral Research Fellow at Harvard University and Children’s Hospital Boston working with Prof. Judah Folkman on Vascular and Cancer Biology. In 2003, she was appointed Instructor in Surgery at Boston Children’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School. She joined Tel Aviv University in 2006. She serves on the Board of Directors of Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd., Board of Governors of Tel Aviv University, member of the Scientific Advisory Board (SAB) of the Blavatnik Center for Drug Discovery, the Israel Cancer Association, the Hospital Universitari Vall d’Hebron – Institut de Recerca (VHIR, Barcelona, Spain), The Rothschild Fellowships Committee, several VCs (VLX, etc.) and several editorial boards of scientific journals.

Her multidisciplinary research laboratory focuses on basic research elucidating the mechanisms underlying the switch from cancer dormancy leading to the discovery of new molecular targets to interrupt tumor-host interactions. Her approach is followed by the design of highly-selective targeting molecules integrating biology, chemistry, medicine, bioinformatics and nanotechnology to selectively guide drugs into pathological sites.

Throughout, she has maintained an interest in understanding the biological rationale for the design of nanomedicines suitable for transfer into clinical testing. She published more than 110 manuscripts, 12 book chapters, edited 2 books, is named inventor on 55 patents, some of which were licensed to Pharmaceutical and Biotech companies, and has given over 400 lectures worldwide.

Her students are pursuing careers in academia, industry and government. She is currently founding a spin-off company and is actively engaged in translational research with several industry partners and in science outreach.

She was awarded numerous prestigious grants and prizes among them Fulbright, Rothschild, Wingate, Alon, Young Investigator Award of the European Association for Cancer Research, JULUDAN Prize for the Advancement of Technology in Medicine, the 2013 Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Founders Award for the Discovery of new molecular mechanisms and targets that would lead to new therapeutic approaches, the 2019 Youdim Family Prize for Excellence in Cancer Research and the 2019 Humboldt Foundation Bessel Research Prize.

Her scientific achievements were acknowledged numerous times by inclusion in honorary lists by leading magazines (Forbes, Globes’ Woman of the Year 2019, named one of Israel’s Top 40 under 40 by The Marker, Calcalist, etc.). She was elected the 2019 Chair of the Gordon Research Conference (GRC) on Cancer Nanotechnology, was awarded the 2018 Israel Cancer Research Fund (ICRF) Professorship, was selected to represent Israel at the 2016 Biennale in Venice on the Influence of Medicine on Architecture, and was awarded the European Research Council (ERC) Consolidator (2014-2019), Advanced (2019-2024) and Proof of Concept (PoC) (2019-2020) Grants.

The Laboratory

The Satchi-Fainaro Laboratory for Cancer Research and Nanomedicine

Combining multidisciplinary basic, translational and clinical approaches for cancer therapy

In our lab, we invest multidisciplinary efforts to elucidate the basic molecular mechanisms responsible for cancer progression to an aggressive, metastatic, drug-resistant phenotype in order to reveal new “druggable targets” for clinical translation.

To achieve this goal, we exploit a rich platform of cell lines, ex vivo 3D models and in vivo mouse models of cancer as well as fresh and archived tissue specimens obtained from fruitful collaborations with several of TAU’s affiliated hospitals. We use a range of molecular and functional techniques to identify and validate new markers and drivers of cancer progression.

The newly-gained knowledge is harnessed for the design of novel clinically-relevant polymer-based diagnostic and therapeutic tools for cancer. Our vision is that our multidisciplinary approach will revolutionize our perception of tumour progression and consequently the way we diagnose and treat cancer.

The David Cornfield Melanoma Fund (DCMF)

In 2005, David Cornfield, dearly loved by family and friends, died from melanoma at 32 years of age.  In 2007, the David Cornfield Melanoma Fund  (DCMF) was established to save lives from melanoma. 

Recognized as a Canadian leader and a global voice, DCMF takes action on melanoma through awareness, prevention and research

Ontario and Western Canada

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