For the past 20 years, Greater Philadelphia has been home to the Greater Philadelphia Chapter of the Sino-American Pharmaceutical Professionals Association (SAPA). The volunteer-supported professional organization, referred to as SAPA-GP, has filled its leadership team with executives at some of the leading biotech and pharmaceutical companies in our area. With support from more than 4,000 members, SAPA-GP hosts numerous scientific and business programs year-round and offers mentorship and career development opportunities for aspiring students and professionals.

This June, SAPA-GP will host its inaugural @Philly Cell and Gene Therapy Annual Conference, which the organization plans to make an annual event. The debut event, to be held June 17-18 at the Sheraton Valley Forge Hotel in King of Prussia, Pa., was created to raise the visibility of the region’s cell and gene therapy ecosystem and foster collaboration in the industry. It will help researchers and scientists, entrepreneurs, investors, students, and others in the region’s cell and gene therapy sector acquire information, leverage connections, and share resources. This is a concrete step for SAPA-GP to support the Chamber of Commerce for its Greater Philadelphia Cell & Gene Therapy and Connected Health Initiative.

According to the organizers, the conference will feature trailblazing stories and expert-led discussions covering topics from early discovery to the ecosystem that generate a sustainable supply of cell and gene therapy assets and talent. Peter Marks, M.D., Ph.D., the director of the Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research for the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, will be a keynote speaker at the conference. In addition to the @Philly Forum, with topics such as “Cell and Gene Therapy Market Dynamics and the Global Ecosystem,” and “Local Policies and Initiatives to Support Cell and Gene Therapy,” the event will also include an entrepreneurship workshop. 

SAPA-GP leaders shared more insight about the conference and why SAPA-GP is working together with the Chamber to further the region’s Cell & Gene Therapy and Connected Health Initiative.

Haichen Yang, MD, MA, MBA, SAPA-GP President 2022-23, and Vice President of Clinical Research at Amicus Therapeutics

“SAPA-GP’s new @Philly Cell and Gene Therapy Annual Conference will be a major step to advance the Chamber of Commerce for Greater Philadelphia’s Cell & Gene Therapy and Connected Health Initiative. The conference features an exciting @Philly Forum that will highlight Greater Philadelphia’s collective advantages in enhanced support of policy, infrastructure, and investment in areas of cell and gene therapy research and development, manufacturing, and entrepreneurship.”

Jing Yang, Ph.D., former SAPA-GP president (2019-2020) and now SAPA advisory board member, and Chief Scientific Officer at BaseCure Therapeutics

“It took three years to bring the first @Philly Cell and Gene Therapy Annual Conference to fruition. Our leadership team recognized the opportunity to capitalize on SAPA-GP’s strength to increase the visibility of the biotech industries in the Greater Philadelphia region. In preparation for the conference, we hosted a SAPA-GP Liberty Bell Venture Forum at the Redefining Early Stage Investments in Philadelphia Conference, a Venture Café event, and a couple of cell and gene therapy workshops. Most of all, we were excited to call out the world-leading cell and gene therapy innovations in the region and galvanizing innovators and business leaders via a new forum, hence the inception of the @Philly Cell and Gene Therapy Annual Conference.”  

Registration for the two-day conference will open in mid-May. For more information about SAPA-GP, visit