The Kitasato Symposium 2009: New Prospects for Cytokine Inhibition was held in Berlin, Germany from 7 to 9 May 2009. The key aims of this meeting were to bring together a group of front-line researchers and rheumatologists to evaluate the use of cytokine blockade and to examine the role of certain cytokines in the pathogenesis of rheumatoid arthritis and other autoimmune diseases. A keynote lecture delivered by Professor Jean-Michel Dayer provided an up-to-date overview of the interactions occurring between the immune system and acute phase proteins. Other speakers discussed the role of cytokines in rheumatoid arthritis, including their role in joint destruction, as well as their regulatory role upon T cells and B cells. The involvement of cytokines in other autoimmune diseases was also addressed.
The Second Annual Symposium of the Global Cancer Genomics Consortium (GCGC) was held at the Tata Memorial Center in Mumbai, India, from November 19 to 20, 2012. Founded in late 2010, the GCGC aims to provide a platform for highly productive, collaborative efforts on next-generation cancer research through bridging the latest scientific and technology developments with clinical oncology challenges. This year’s presenters brought together highly innovative interdisciplinary views and strategies to meet major challenges in cancer research. The symposium featured 3 major themes: OMICS approaches toward the identification of cancer molecular drivers, single-cell analysis in cancer, and clinical and translational genomics. Each theme was represented in presentations of new findings, with an obvious implication in cross-disciplinary components of OMICs and an overwhelming participation by students. In summary, the GCGC symposium provided a discussion and congregation of the latest advances in basic and translational cancer research and offered the participants with a highly cooperative network environment for future collaboration.
genomics medicine; anticancer target; cancer therapy
Many of the Alzheimer’s disease (AD) clinical trials have made it far enough down the pipeline to allow conclusions about targeting the amyloid-β peptide (Aβ) as a therapeutic approach. Based on these results, it is becoming clear that a multifocal approach to AD treatment is probably necessary. However, critical discussion beyond Aβ is necessary to enable the next wave of AD therapeutic targets. For this reason, the 2010 Keystone Symposium, ‘Alzheimer’s Disease Beyond Aβ’, was organized by JoAnne McLaurin and Tony Wyss-Coray to spark topical discussion and debate. While researchers struggled to get beyond that ever-present pathognomonic feature of AD, new and exciting evidence was presented that raised our awareness of what is around the corner for next-generation AD therapeutics beyond Aβ. This report will describe some of the highlights from Copper Mountain Resort throughout the meeting period of 10–15 January 2010 in Colorado (USA). Despite illuminating scientific presentations and intense discussions, a number of important questions remain concerning the best biomarkers and targets to focus on, and when and how to therapeutically intervene.
This meeting report gives an overview of the keynote lectures and a selection of the student oral and poster presentations at the 6th International Society for Computational Biology Student Council Symposium that was held as a precursor event to the annual international conference on Intelligent Systems for Molecular Biology (ISMB). The symposium was held in Boston, MA, USA on July 9th, 2010.
Two of the best ways to improve the quality of childhood nutrition are (a) more collaboration at the national, State, and local levels and (b) adoption of innovative and multimedia learning methods, according to the leaders of nutrition education. These themes were discussed at the 13th Annual Nutrition Symposium, which was held March 9, 1994, in Washington, DC. In recognition of National Nutrition Month, a collaborative effort of the Public Health Service's Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the meeting was attended by more than 300 public and private sector nutrition educators and public health professionals. Their assignment was to analyze school-based nutrition education programs and the research being conducted on nutrition. Keynote speaker Surgeon General M. Joycelyn Elders, MD, issued the challenge for all Federal and State agencies to work with schools and nutrition education professionals to overcome limited resources and children's current eating habits to improve the nutritional status of children. Responding to that challenge, speakers from the Department of Health and Human Services, the agency sponsoring the meeting, the Department of Agriculture, the Department of Education, as well as from the Congress, business, and public schools addressed several initiatives.
The Second International Lygus Symposium brought together 52 entomologists from six nations and 11 states representing universities, public agencies, and private entities to discuss the latest research on Lygus species and their relatives. Symposium topics included Lygus biology, behavior and ecology, IPM, insecticides and resistance, and biological control. Papers and posters dealt with Lygus as a pest of several crops, including cotton, strawberries, seed alfalfa, canola, dry beans, cucumbers, cereals, peaches, and new crops guayule and lesquerella. Intercrop movement of Lygus2008200820082008 species was another important topic of many presentations. In the capstone session, participants identified needs and priorities for ongoing Lygus research and education (available at http://ag.arizona.edu/apmc/Arid_SWPMC_RAMP.html). The conference was sponsored in part by FMC Corporation, the University of Arizona Arizona Pest Management Center, the University of California Statewide IPM Program, and a grant to Ellsworth et al. (CRIS# 0207436) from the USDA-CSREES, Risk Avoidance and Mitigation Program (RAMP).
The 2010 annual National Toxicology Program (NTP) Satellite Symposium, entitled “Pathology Potpourri,” was held in Chicago, Illinois, in advance of the scientific symposium sponsored jointly by the Society of Toxicologic Pathology (STP) and the International Federation of Societies of Toxicologic Pathologists (IFSTP). The goal of the annual NTP Symposium is to present current diagnostic pathology or nomenclature issues to the toxicologic pathology community. This article presents summaries of the speakers' presentations, including diagnostic or nomenclature issues that were presented, along with select images that were used for voting or discussion. Some topics covered during the symposium included a comparison of rat and mouse hepatocholangiocarcinoma, a comparison of cholangiofibrosis and cholangiocarcinoma in rats, a mixed pancreatic neoplasm with acinar and islet cell components, an unusual preputial gland tumor, renal hyaline glomerulopathy in rats and mice, eosinophilic substance in the nasal septum of mice, INHAND nomenclature for proliferative and nonproliferative lesions of the CNS/PNS, retinal gliosis in a rat, fibroadnexal hamartoma in rats, intramural plaque in a mouse, a treatment-related chloracne-like lesion in mice, and an overview of mouse ovarian tumors.
NTP Satellite Symposium; INHAND nomenclature; hepatocholangiocarcinoma; acinar-islet cell; preputial gland; hyaline glomerulopathy; eosinophilic substance; ependymoma; axonal degeneration; retinal gliosis; fibroadnexal hamartoma; intramural plaque; chloracne; ovary; cholangiocarcinoma
The International Society for Strategic Studies in Radiology (IS3R) brings together thought leaders from academia and industry from around the world to share ideas, points of view and new knowledge. This article summarizes the main concepts presented at the 2007 IS3R symposium, providing a window onto trends shaping the future of radiology. Topics addressed include new opportunities and challenges in the field of interventional radiology; emerging techniques for evaluating and improving quality and safety in radiology; and factors impeding progress in molecular imaging and nanotechnology and possible ways to overcome them. Regulatory hurdles to technical innovation and drug development are also discussed more broadly, along with proposals for addressing regulators’ concerns and streamlining the regulatory process.
Interventional radiology; Molecular imaging; Device approval processes; Drug approval processes; Health-care quality; Radiology; Leadership
Ankyloblepharon-Ectodermal Defects-Cleft Lip/Palate (AEC) Syndrome (Hay-Wells syndrome, MIM #106220) is a rare autosomal dominant ectodermal dysplasia syndrome. It is due to mutations in the p63 gene, known to be a regulatory gene with many downstream gene targets. TP63 is important in the differentiation and proliferation of the epidermis, as well as many other processes including limb and facial development. It is also known that mutations in p63 lead to skin erosions. These erosions, especially on the scalp, are defining features of AEC syndrome and cause significant morbidity and mortality in these patients. It was this fact that led to the 2003 AEC Skin Erosion Workshop. That conference laid the groundwork for the International Research Symposium for AEC Syndrome held at Texas Children's Hospital in 2006. The conference brought together the largest cohort of individuals with AEC syndrome, along with a multitude of physicians and scientists. The overarching goals were to define the clinical and pathologic findings for improved diagnostic criteria, to obtain tissue samples for further study and to define future research directions. The symposium was successful in accomplishing these aims as detailed in this conference report. Following our report, we also present eleven manuscripts within this special section that outline the collective clinical, pathologic and mutational data from eighteen individuals enrolled in the concurrent Baylor College of Medicine IRB-approved protocol: Characterization of AEC syndrome. These collaborative findings will hopefully provide a stepping stone to future translational projects of p63 and p63-related syndromes.
ectodermal dysplasia; congenital ectodermal defect; skin; wound healing; p63; TP63; tumor protein p63; bone morphogenetic protein; BMP; fibroblast growth factor; FGF, ectodysplasin A receptor; EDAR; beta-catenin; NOTCH1; p53 apoptosis effector protein; Perp; activated protein kinase C; RACK1; stratifin; SFN; apobec-1-binding protein-1; ABBP1
This report summarizes highlights of the ‘Philadelphia Chromosome Symposium: Past, Present and Future’, held September 28, 2010, to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the discovery of the Philadelphia chromosome. The symposium sessions included presentations by investigators who made seminal contributions concerning the discovery and molecular characterization of the Ph chromosome and others who developed a highly successful therapy based on the specific molecular alteration observed in chronic myelogenous leukemia. Additional presentations highlighted future opportunities for the design of molecularly targeted therapies for various types of cancer. Also included here are reminiscences connected with the discovery of the Ph chromosome by David Hungerford and Peter Nowell, the discovery that the abnormality arises from a chromosomal translocation, by Janet Rowley, and the cloning of the 9;22 translocation breakpoints by Nora Heisterkamp, John Groffen and colleagues.
BCR; ABL; translocation; imatinib; targeted therapies
There have been publically expressed concerns about the costs and allocation of neonatal and perinatal health care resources in Canada and elsewhere for the past 15 years. This paper reports information from a symposium held during the 1996 Canadian Paediatric Society (CPS) annual meeting sponsored by the CPS Section on Perinatal Medicine. Experts in perinatal epidemiology, health care economics, public policy and finance, and consumer perspectives on the outcomes of neonatal and perinatal intensive care explored the following questions: How should the need for health care resources in the neonatal and perinatal area be objectively determined? When there are competing needs between the maternal-newborn area and other areas, how should these be rationalized? What evidence should be used (or should be available) to support the present use of resources? What evidence should be available (or is needed) to change or introduce new uses of resources? The conclusions indicated that there are no generally accepted methods to determine the allocation of health care resources but that considerations need to include population characteristics, desired outcomes, achievable results, values, ethics, legalities, cost-benefit analyses and political objectives. Information from families and adolescents who required the use of high technology and/or high cost programs will contribute individual, family and societal values that complement cost-efficacy analyses.
Allocation of resources; Health care funding; Neonatal care
Two recent meetings held on the west coast of the USA highlighted current work being done in the field of retrovirology and AIDS. The meetings, "The Twelfth West Coast Retrovirus Meeting" (Palm Springs CA; October 6–8, 2005), and the "Twenty-third Annual Symposium on Nonhuman Primate Models for AIDS" (Portland OR; September 21–24) covered a broad range of topics. The highlights covered here are not meant to be inclusive but reflect presentations of interest in the identification and development of new HIV therapies and the role played by animal models in their development.
Rhabdomyosarcoma (RMS) and Ewing sarcoma (ES) are among the most common pediatric sarcomas (Arndt et al., 2012). Despite sarcomas representing a highly heterogeneous group of tumors, ES and alveolar RMS (ARMS) typically share one common genetic characteristic, namely a specific chromosomal translocation (Helman and Meltzer, 2003; Lessnick and Ladanyi, 2012). These translocations generate fusion proteins, which are composed of two transcription factors (TF). Typically, one TF is a developmentally regulated factor that is essential for proper specification of a given lineage and provides the DNA-binding domain, while the partner TF contributes a transactivation domain that drives aberrant expression of target genes. Based on these common genetic characteristics, the first ESF-EMBO research conference entitled “Molecular Biology and Innovative Therapies in Sarcomas of Childhood and Adolescence” with special focus on RMS and ES was held at the Polonia Castle in Pultusk, Poland. The conference gathered 70 participants from more than 15 countries and several continents representing most research groups that are active in this field.
Rhabdomyosarcoma; Ewing sarcoma; therapeutics; PAX3/FOXO1; EWS/Fli1
Neuroblastoma is a pediatric tumor of infancy derived from precursor cells of the sympathetic nervous system. Clinicians and researchers in developmental biology and genetics recently met to facilitate meaningful crosstalk and to discuss considerable progress made in the clinical treatment and basic biology of neuroblastoma. For instance, discoveries in familial neuroblastoma have identified genetic aberrations in Phox2b and Alk that predispose to neuroblastoma, while advances in epigenetics and MYCN regulation have also offered insight into neuroblastoma pathogenesis and future treatment. Moreover, novel therapeutic avenues are also being explored, including targeted immunotherapies, and innovative radiotherapeutic and chemotherapeutic approaches. This multi-disciplinary meeting was convened to aid the transfer of new biological findings into the clinic and to use clinical advances to inform the basic biological understanding of this devastating disease.
Neuroblastoma; Neuroblastoma biology; Molecular biology of neuroblastoma
About 80% of neoplasias are epithelial in origin and, as such, understanding the molecular mechanisms involved in the development of epithelial tumours is vital to the diagnosis, prognosis and treatment of the vast majority of human cancers. Obviously this is no easy task but, as outlined above, great efforts are being made to identify important molecules involved in the progression of normal epithelial cells to carcinoma. The development of techniques to identify new oncogenes is of particular importance, and hopefully the cDNA expression cloning system of Stuart Aaronson will be a useful tool in this respect. The potential of some of these molecules to be used as therapeutic targets will require the development of suitable screening procedures, such as that being established by Chris Marshall for the ras-Map kinase pathway in yeast. It is encouraging that the immune response to virally (HPV) induced cancer is being carefully elucidated and the prospects of vaccine development for the treatment of cervical cancer coming nearer since this particular form of SCC is a major cancer globally. Finally it was fitting to end the meeting on an optimistic note with John Mendelsohn's EGFR monoclonal antibody therapy entering clinical trials, and hopefully this will prove efficacious in the treatment of human SSC.
Recent studies have elucidated unanticipated connections between the immune and skeletal systems, and this relationship has led to the development of a new field known as osteoimmunology. The goal of research in this field is to: 1) further understand how the bone microenvironment influences immune cell ontogeny and subsequent effector functions, and 2) translate basic science findings in bone biology to clinical applications for autoimmune diseases that target the skeleton such as rheumatoid arthritis. In this review, we will examine the recent findings of the interplay between the immune and skeletal systems. This discussion will focus on the cells and signaling pathways in osteoimmune interactions and how innate and adaptive immune effector cells as well as cytokines and chemokines play a role in the maintenance and dysregulation of skeletal-immune homeostasis. We will also discuss how immunomodulatory biologic drugs, which specifically target these cells and effector molecules, have transformed the treatment of autoimmune mediated inflammatory diseases (IMIDs) and metabolic bone diseases such as osteoporosis.
Osteoimmunology; receptor-activator of nuclear factor kappa B (RANK); RANK-ligand; osteoprotegerin (OPG); arthritis; osteoporosis
Vitamin D is an important regulator of the immune system in general and multiple sclerosis in particular. Experimentally (i), invariant natural killer T (iNKT) cells have been shown to be important suppressors of autoimmune diseases such as experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE; an animal model of multiple sclerosis). Conversely, in experimental allergic asthma iNKT cells are required for disease induction and are therefore pathogenic. The active form of vitamin D (calcitriol) suppresses EAE. The development of EAE symptoms is accelerated in vitamin D deficiency. Interestingly experimental asthma is less severe in vitamin D deficiency although there is no effect of calcitriol on disease severity. The data suggest that an important target of vitamin D in EAE and asthma are the iNKT cells. Vitamin D and/or vitamin D receptor deficiency results in the impaired development of iNKT cells. Vitamin D is critical very early during development of the immune system. Low levels of vitamin D in utero resulted in significantly reduced numbers of iNKT cells that failed to recover when calcitriol was used to supplement neonatal or adult mice. The data suggest that one of the consequences of early vitamin D deficiency is a reduction in the numbers of iNKT cells that develop. The iNKT cells are required for the beneficial effects of calcitriol in EAE. The important role of vitamin D on iNKT cells could impact the development of human immune-mediated diseases including multiple sclerosis and asthma.
Vitamin D; Immune function; Multiple sclerosis; Asthma; NKT cell
IL-17 (also known as IL-17A) is the signature cytokine of the newly-described “Th17” T helper cell population, and has been implicated in the pathogenesis of numerous autoimmune diseases including rheumatoid arthritis. IL-17 is the founding member of a new subclass of cytokines that have highly pro-inflammatory properties. Studies in rodents, mammalian cell culture systems as well as clinical settings support a role for IL-17 in promoting rheumatoid arthritis. The history of the discovery of Th17 cells, the potential mechanisms of action of IL-17 in autoimmunity and perspectives for IL-17-targeted cytokine therapy are discussed.
A consensus meeting on autoimmune pancreatitis (AIP) was held in Seoul on August 31, 2007. Many Korean and Japanese gastroenterologist interested in AIP participated in the joint symposium, and issues related to histology, radiology, clinical manifestation, serology, and diagnostic criteria were discussed. This joint meeting indicated the need for unified diagnostic criterion for AIP in Korea and Japan. Here, we provide a summary of the symposium presentations and discussions.
Autoimmune pancreatitis; Consensus; Korea; Japan
The Worldwide Innovative Networking (WIN) consortium is a global alliance of academic and industrial cancer researchers, clinicians, and cancer advocacy groups set up to promote innovations in personalised cancer therapy and to accelerate the translation of research in this discipline into the oncology clinic. One of its most important initiatives is the WIN symposia, which have been held in Paris each summer since 2009. The fifth WIN symposium, which was held 10–12 July 2013, took as its overall theme ‘Personalised Cancer Therapy: From Innovation to Implementation’.
Over 400 delegates, including a good number of representatives of patient groups as well as leading academic, industrial, and clinical scientists; students; and post-docs attended this symposium. Its scientific programme featured thirty presentations divided into four main plenary sessions, and there was also a wide-ranging poster session that encompassed all the topics covered in the plenaries.
The programme structure followed the path of drug discovery, in that the first session covered assay development for personalised cancer medicine; the second, applications of genomics in oncology; the third, clinical development; and the fourth, the impact of personalised medicine on cancer care.
biomarkers; personalised medicine; targeted therapy; genomics; proteomics
Immediately following the 2010 annual American Society of Hematology (ASH) meeting, the 5th International Post-ASH Symposium on Chronic Myelogenous Leukemia and BCR-ABL1-Negative Myeloproliferative Neoplasms (MPNs) took place on 7–8 December 2010 in Orlando, Florida, USA. During this meeting, the most recent advances in laboratory research and clinical practice, including those that were presented at the 2010 ASH meeting, were discussed among recognized authorities in the field. The current paper summarizes the proceedings of this meeting in BCR-ABL1-negative MPN. We provide a detailed overview of new mutations with putative epigenetic effects (TET oncogene family member 2 (TET2), additional sex comb-like 1 (ASXL1), isocitrate dehydrogenase (IDH) and enhancer of zeste homolog 2 (EZH2)) and an update on treatment with Janus kinase (JAK) inhibitors, pomalidomide, everolimus, interferon-α, midostaurin and cladribine. In addition, the new ‘Dynamic International Prognostic Scoring System (DIPSS)-plus' prognostic model for primary myelofibrosis (PMF) and the clinical relevance of distinguishing essential thrombocythemia from prefibrotic PMF are discussed.
myeloproliferative; myelofibrosis; polycythemia; thrombocythemia; mastocytosis
Disparities in health outcomes occur in systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) especially in economically disadvantaged populations. At the 9th International Congress on SLE, June 24–27, 2010, held in Vancouver, British Columbia, a symposium “Narrowing the Gap in the Treatment and Study of SLE worldwide” was held. Participating physicians from the Caribbean, Central and South America, Asia, Portugal, Africa and impoverished areas of the United States detailed their constraints and desires. These were remarkably consistent. Out of these discussions, a statement on minimum best practice was put forth aimed at the cost-effective management of SLE focusing on the critical factors that make a difference and are feasible even in the most challenging environments. Approaches to designing studies and establishing research and mentoring collaborations was also discussed. The ultimate aim was to provide an avenue for the improvement of care and outcomes for patients with SLE worldwide.
SLE; Best practice; Health disparities; Rheumatology
In September 2010, the first International Scientific Tendinopathy Symposium (ISTS) was held in Umeå, Sweden, to establish a forum for original scientific and clinical insights in this growing field of clinical research and practice. The second ISTS was organised by the same group and held in Vancouver, Canada, in September 2012. This symposium was preceded by a round-table meeting in which the participants engaged in focused discussions, resulting in the following overview of tendinopathy clinical and research issues. This paper is a narrative review and summary developed during and after the second ISTS. The document is designed to highlight some key issues raised at ISTS 2012, and to integrate them into a shared conceptual framework. It should be considered an update and a signposting document rather than a comprehensive review. The document is developed for use by physiotherapists, physicians, athletic trainers, massage therapists and other health professionals as well as team coaches and strength/conditioning managers involved in care of sportspeople or workers with tendinopathy.
Portal hypertension and its complications account for the majority of morbidity and mortality that occurs in patients with cirrhosis. In addition to portal hypertension, a number of other vascular syndromes are also of great importance especially the ischemia-reperfusion (IR) injury. With the identification of major vascular defects that could account for many of the clinical sequelae of these syndromes, the liver vasculature field has now integrated very closely with the broader vascular biology discipline. In that spirit, the Henry and Lillian Stratton Basic Research Single Topic Conference was held on the topic of Vascular Biology and Pathobiology of the Liver. The course took place approximately 10 years after the first AASLD-sponsored conference on this topic that occurred in Reston, Virginia. The conference initiated with an introduction to basic vascular cell signaling and then explored vascular biology specifically as it relates to liver cells. Subsequently, specific disease syndromes were discussed in more detail including portal hypertension and IR injury. Finally, clinical and translational sessions focused on emerging therapies and technologies to treat vascular diseases of the liver.