• Hokkaido University, Japan
  • Title:Prostaglandins in Teleost Ovulation: A Review of the Roles with a view to Comparison with Prostaglandins in Mammalian Ovulation
  • Time :

Ovulation, which is induced by the ovulatory luteinizing hormone (LH) surge in vertebrates, is a dynamic process that results in a discharge of one or more fertilizable oocytes from the ovarian follicle into the ovarian cavity or into the abdominal cavity. Follicle rupture is a core event of the ovulatory process and has been the subject of intensive investigation. Prostaglandins are well known to be central regulators of vertebrate ovulation. Studies addressing the role of prostaglandins in mammalian ovulation have established that they are involved in the processes of oocyte maturation and cumulus oocyte complex expansion. In contrast, despite the first indication of the role of prostaglandins in teleost ovulation appearing 40 years ago, the mechanistic background of their role has long been unknown. However, studies conducted on the teleost medaka over the past decade have provided valuable information. Emerging evidence indicates a critical role of prostaglandin E2 and its receptor subtype Ptger4b in the process of follicle rupture. In addition, our studies have revealed that activation of the melatonin/melatonin receptor system in the ovulating follicle is required for the prostaglandin E2-mediated follicle rupture process. In this talk, we summarize studies addressing the role of prostaglandins in teleost ovulation and describe recent advances. To help understand differences from and similarities to ovulation in mammalian species, the findings on the roles of prostaglandins in mammalian ovulation are discussed in parallel.
*Takayuki Takahashi, Ph.D., Emeritus Professor of Hokkaido University, Japan
1979 Ph.D. in Zoology (Hokkaido University)
1980-1986 Research Associate, Protein Studies Lab at Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, USA
1987-1993 Assistant Professor, Faculty of Science, University of Tokyo, Japan
1993-2016 Professor, Faculty of Science, Hokkaido University, Japan
2016-2019 Research Professor, Hokkaido University, Japan
Research interests
My research activities are in the field of reproductive biology of vertebrates including fish. In particular, my laboratory has been closely associated with ovulation studies using a teleost medaka by cellular and molecular biological approaches. Our final goal is to get insights into the evolutional aspect of ovulation in the animal kingdom.
We were the first to report that, using the teleost medaka, (i) MMPs and plasminogen activator/plasmin are involved in follicle rupture during ovulation (PNAS, 2005; Biol. Reprod., 2012, 2015). In addition, our studies showed that (ii) many ovulation-related-genes are induced by the surge of LH at ovulation (PLoS ONE, 2013; Biol. Reprod., 2014; MCE, 2017), (iii) activation of the prostaglandin E2 and the receptor system is required for follicle rupture (MCE, 2011, 2012, 2017; Biol. Reprod., 2016), and (iv) follicle rupture during ovulation is the process which proceeds under precise endocrine control (MCE, 2017; Reproduction, 2019; cells, 2019).
In 2010, Prize from the Zoological Society of Japan
“Discovery of ovulatory proteases and elucidation of follicle rupture mechanism in teleost medaka”

  • SERVIER Research Institute, France
  • Title:GTP-CH Pathway Involvement in Age-Induced Microvascular Dysfunction
  • Time :

Little is known about the mechanisms of aging on vascular beds and its relationship with GTP-CH pathway. Age is the ubiquitous risk factor for human diseases, but no preclinical studies explored its interplay with GTP-CH deficiency.
The vascular blood vessel plays a critical role in tissue function by providing nutrients and removing metabolic products, the knowledge of the mechanisms involved in their loss of function is important. We have studied the impact of the alteration of GTP-CH activity on vasoreactivity from conduit and small arteries along the vascular tree as seen during aging. The mutant hyperphenylalaninemic mouse (hph-1) model reported to be deficient in GTP cyclohydrolase I, a rate limiting enzyme in tetrahydrobiopterin (BH4) biosynthesis was used. BH4 is a key regulator of vascular homeostasis by regulating the nitric oxide synthase 3 (NOS3) activity. In GTP-CH deficient mice, the aortic BH4 levels were decreased, by −77% in 12 week-aged mice (young) and by −83% in 35–45 week-middle-aged mice (middle-aged). In young hph-1, the mesenteric artery ability to respond to flow was slightly reduced by 9%. Aging induced huge modification in many vascular functions. In middle-aged hph-1, we observed a decrease in flow-mediated vasodilation of mesenteric artery (−31%), in coronary hyperemia response measured in isolated heart following transient ischemia (−27%) and in cutaneous microcirculation dilation in response to acetylcholine assessed in vivo by laser-doppler technic (−69%). In parallel, the endothelium-dependent relaxation in response to acetylcholine in conduit blood vessel, measured on isolated aorta rings, was unchanged in hph-1 mice whatever the age.
Our findings showed that the microcirculation reactivity was altered by GTP-CH deficiency in the three vascular beds explored: mesenteric, coronary and cutaneous without modification of conduit blood vessel function. The microcirculation dysfunction is observed with aging and amplified by the deficiency of GTP-CH pathway.
Dr Marie-Pierre Bourguignon has worked in the pharmaceutical industry for 30 years, since obtaining her PhD in biology from the pharmacological department of Creteil Medicine Faculty. She has worked at the Servier Research Institute in the cardiovascular field as a researcher, a project leader, and has led a team of biochemists and cellular biologists for many years. Currently she is working as scientific support for the pharmacological in vitro department. Her main research interests are the pathways involved in aging and cardiovascular pathologies, and the identification of disease or target biomarkers.
She has supervised many students, including several post doctorates, and presented her research work (around 50) at congresses and as scientific publications.

  • Buckingham Browne & Nichols School, USA
  • Title:The Application of DNA Nucleotide Footprint Plotter and Peptide Visualizer to Coronavirus
  • Time :

Direct visualization of the key features of coronavirus genomes and peptides can lead to a better understanding of this virus as well as to distinguish the mutant strains. The current study developed Java tools DNA nucleotide footprint plotter and peptide visualizer. DNA nucleotide footprint plotter makes it possible for straightforward visualization of the characteristics of viral genomes and recombination. Peptide visualizer is sensitive to changes in protein sequences and functions. The tools provide novel insights for biological studies that can contribute to breakthroughs in coronavirus diagnosis, treatment, and prevention.
I am a junior in Buckingham Browne & Nichols school in Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA. I took biology and AP JAVA. The outbreak of coronavirus made me realize the importance to write tools to explore the genome and peptide characteristics of this virus. So I developed “DNA nucleotide footprint plotter” and “Peptide Visualizer”. The tools can directly display the key features of viral genomes and peptides and make intuitive visualization of different types of virus genomes and proteins.
In my leisure time, I spend a lot of time playing and writing video games, playing violin, participating robotics club and leading a rocketry club. I also enjoy crewing and scrolling on Charles river in Boston.

  • University of Tartu, Estonia
  • Title:open-source solutions for whole slide imaging: an overview and possible application.
  • Time :

Digital pathology is rapidly evolving, transforming qualitative paradigms to quantitative ones, increasing histological examination objectivity. With a compound annual growth rate of the market over 10%, scanning devices with a higher slide capacity, speed and resolution become available. Not of less importance is software, varying from free basic viewers ending with advanced machine learning algorithms promising (semi) automatic diagnosis. To a significant extent, the advantages of computer-assisted image analysis may first be experienced via open-source solutions. The session provides an overview of existing free WSI-oriented solutions and examples of possible applications in teaching, scientific research, and pathologists’ daily practice.

Pathologist, the founder of Estonian Digital Pathology Association. Co-developer of the first digital-pathology department in Estonia. Co-author of digital pathology solutions for medical and medical technician students in Estonia.

  • Jagiellonian University ,Poland
  • Title:Silencing of RIPK4 Inhibits NF-κB Activation and IL-8 Expression in TNF-α Stimulated Melanoma Cells
  • Time :

Metastatic melanoma is an aggressive skin cancer that is notoriously resistant to current cancer therapies. Studies focused on the reciprocal interactions of melanoma and immune cells demonstrated that microenvironment-derived tumour necrosis factor (TNF-α) might induce dedifferentiation of the melanoma cells. Interleukin-8 (IL-8), a chemoattractant cytokine that has been demonstrated to positively influence tumour growth through autocrine and paracrine signalling is constitutively expressed in melanoma, however, it has remained not fully understand what factors elicit its upregulation since its expression can be regulated through a variety of mechanisms.
RIPK4 (Receptor-Interacting Protein Kinase 4) is a 91.6 kDa serine-threonine kinase belonging to the RIP family responsible for keratinocytes differentiation and stimulation of proinflammatory cytokine syntheses, such as CCL5, CXCL11 and IL8. RIPK4 is also involved in the regulation of the main signalling pathways in the cell, such as Wnt, NF-κB and acts as a “linker” between the PKC and NF-κB pathways. Constitutive activation of NF-κB pathway leads to the deregulation of gene transcription including IL-8 and plays a key role in the regulation of invasive properties and treatment resistance of melanoma.
Our studies show that RIPK4 level is manifold higher in melanoma cells than in normal melanocytes. Using interference siRNA technique we diminished the level of RIPK4 in melanoma cells and found that silencing of RIPK4 decrease activation of p65 and p-IKKα/β. Thus, we studied if IL-8 expression upon stimulation with TNF-α differs between melanoma cells with diminished level of RIPK4 expression and negative control (non-specific siRNA) by qRT-PCR and ELISA. We identified that IL-8 regulation by TNF-α in melanoma cell was mediated through RIPK4 and NF-κB activation.
The study was supported by the National Science Centre Grant number 2018/31/N/NZ3/02625 and 2018/31/B/N25/01423

I’m a PhD student in the Department of Biophysics. In my research I study signalling pathways in melanoma cells, focusing on the role of RIPK4 kinase in the regulation of melanoma cell invasiveness. I’m principal investigator in project “Engagement of RIPK4 in RAF1/MEK/ERK pathway in melanoma cells” funding by National Science Centre. Moreover recently I finished my project “Involvement of RIPK4 kinase in PKC/NFκB pathway in melanoma progression”, Grant was funded by KNOW 2018/2019 to Faculty of Biochemistry, Biophysics, and Biotechnology of Jagiellonian University.
My publication:
Skalniak L, Smejda M, Cierniak A, Adamczyk A, Konieczny P, Madej E, Wolnicka-Głubisz
A. p38 but not p53 is responsible for UVA-induced MCPIP1 expression. Mech Ageing Dev. Volume 172, June 2018, Pages 96-106
1)XLV Winter School of the Faculty of Biochemistry, Biophysics and Biotechnology of the Jagiellonian University in Cracow, Zakopane, Poland, February 2018; The involvement of RIPK4 in the regulation of melanoma cell invasiveness (poster presentation)
2)IV Nationwide Biomedical Symposium Esculap, Lublin, Poland, December 2017; The receptor – interacting protein (RIP) kinase family as a new target in anticancer therapies (oral presentation)
3)17th Congress of the European Society for Photobiology, Pisa, Italy, September 2017; The role of p38/p53 in UVAinduced oxidative stress and MCPIP1 increase (author of the poster)
4)XLIV Winter School of the Faculty of Biochemistry, Biophysics and Biotechnology of the Jagiellonian University in Cracow, Zakopane, Poland, February 2017; The role of p53 in UVA- induced oxidative stress and MCPIP1 increase (poster presentation)

  • Instituto de Cardiologa Calle, Colombia
  • Title:Type 2 Myocardial Infarction in a Patient with Acute Abdomen Due to an Incarcerated Amyand’s Hernia
  • Time :

Background: Type 2 myocardial infarction (MIT2) is characterized by higher mortality rates compared to conventional type 1 infarction according to the European Society of Cardiology (ESC) in 2018. The purpose of this case is to identify appropriate therapeutic measures. A case of an Amyand’s Hernia that produced an MIT2 is described in this work.
Case Report: A 77-year-old male was admitted to our emergency department for acute abdominal pain in the right lower quadrant associated with the presence of an ipsilateral inguinal hernia with signs of peritoneal irritation, while complaining of chest pain. A positive troponin indicated the presence of myocardial infarction. A laparotomy was performed with the finding of an incarcerated right inguinoscrotal hernia that contained the gangrenous and perforated cecal appendix (Amyand hernia type 3). The treatment consisted of surgical correction of the hernia, an appendectomy, antibiotics and support in the intensive care unit with a positive outcome. The diagnosis of Amyand hernia type 3 was established intraoperatively, and by imaging, confirming the presence of an MIT2 according to the criteria of the fourth definition of ECS infarction.
Conclusion: In the surgical environment it is strange to find patients who present with acute abdominal pain and a myocardial infarction at the same time. It is necessary for the consultant to recognize these two entities to make a correct diagnosis and provide timely treatment to reduce any possibility of patient mortality
I am Silvia Barbosa, physician at the Fundacion Cardioinfaltil in Bogota Colombia, I am part of the research group of general surgery and emergency with the aim of improving and promoting the scientific development of my country and society. We are a leading hospital in Latin America and it is through science that we can get more answers every day by sharing knowledge.
My interest is to share the complexity of the human being, how two or more

  • Lomonosov Moscow State University , Russia
  • Title:Antipodal Cells of the Embryo Sac of Wheat as a Unique Object to Study Plant Polytene Chromosomes
  • Time :

Polytene chromosomes are interphase chromosomes consist of homologous chromatids, which are amplified through consecutive cycles of endoreduplication and conjugate together. Polytene chromosomes are formed in the nuclei of cells that require intense synthesis of substances in highly specialized tissues.
Antipodal cells of embryo sac of wheat is an example of plant cells with polytene chromosomes. Antipodal complex is located in the ovule between the nucellus and endosperm. Antipodal cells form a complex consisting of three cell layers – basal, which contacts with the conductive tissues, middle and apical, which contacts with the endosperm. After double fertilization antipodal cells produce substances necessary for the emerging endosperm coenocyte. Antipodal cells belong to the tissues that perform trophic and barrier functions between the maternal organism and the tissues formed after fertilization. So they play key role in development of endosperm and moreover are crucial for formation of endosperm in cultivated cereals, which are food for all the humanity.
The aim of our work was to study the morphology of the nuclei and giant polytene chromosomes of antipodal cells. The work was performed on total specimens of embryo sacs isolated from fixed wheat ovules. We used methods of light microscopy and transmission electron microscopy.
We measured DNA content in the nuclei of the antipodal cells and found that nuclear DNA content varies in the cells of the complex. The basal layer cells contain less DNA than apical layer cells. During the differentiation DNA content of nuclei increases.
Structure of antipodal polytene chromosome differ from structure of animal polytene chromosomes. Animal polytene chromosomes have disks and interdisks as a result of conjugation of chromatids along the entire length of the polytene chromosome. In regions of polytene chromosomes with the intensive synthesis of RNA, decondensation of chromatin occurs and puffs are formed. On the contrary antipodal cells are characterized by giant chromosomes in the form of bundles of threads and conjugation is found only in centromere regions. At the initial stages of the differentiation nuclei of antipodals have approximately the same size and nonsegregated polytene chromosomes. Then the nuclei of middle and apical layer cells increase in size, they have isolated individual chromosomes.
To conclude, the antipodal cells of the embryo sac in cereals are a unique object for solving the fundamental problems of cell biology and a convenient model for studying the structure of the nuclei and the stages of reforming polytene chromosomes during ontogenesis.

Tatiana Doronina is a 2nd year PhD student in Lomonosov Moscow State University, Biology Faculty in Russia at the Department of Cell Biology and Histology. The field of interest is plant cell biology, polytene chromosomes and programmed cell death.
• Doronina, T. V., Chaban, I. A., & Lazareva, E. M. 2019) Structural and Functional Features of the Wheat Embryo Sac’s Antipodal Cells during Differentiation. Russian Journal of Developmental Biology, 50(4), 194-208.
• Doronina, T. V., Chaban, I. A., & Lazareva, E. M. 2019. Structural reorganization of nuclei of wheat antipodal cells during programmed cell death. Biopolymers & Cell, 35(3), 206.

  • Alexandria University, Egypt
  • Title:The Impacts of Seasonal Variation on the Immune Status of Nile Tilapia Larvae and their Response to Different Immunostimulants Feed Additives
  • Time :

Few data are available on the thermal tolerance of Nile tilapia fish larvae in relation to their immune status and survival. The aims of this work were to evaluate the immune status of one day old Nile tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus) larval stage collected at the beginning (March), middle (August) and at the end (October) of hatching season through morphometric assessment of the larvae parameters including yolk sac diameter, body length and width as well as the expression of some immune-related genes (rag, sacs and tlr), inflammatory (il1b and il8) and stress related genes (hsp27, hsp70). Also, to compare the effect of three different immunostimulants (β-glucan, Vitamin C, and methionine /lysine amino acids mix) on the expression of the studied genes at two variant temperatures (23±1°C and 30±1°C) in experimental study for 21 days. The immune status of Nile tilapia is affected by thermal fluctuation throughout the hatching season reflected by altered yolk sac size, length, and expression of the immune and stress related genes of the larvae, the best performances was observed at the beginning of the hatching season (March). High temperature (30 oC) suppress immune and stress responses throughout downregulation of all the genes under study, mask any effects for the immunostimulants, increased mortality in fish larvae suggesting narrow thermal tolerance range for the larvae compared with the adult fish.
We recommend the use of amino acid mix as immunostimulant for Nile tilapia larvae, it reduce the mortality percentage and improve cellular response. Also the use of β- glucan should be prohibited during this developmental stage of larvae, it induced the highest mortality percentage.

I Abeer F. El-Nahas is a professor of Genetics and Genetic Engineering at the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Alexandria University, Egypt science 2012. I completed my practical work of Ph.D. at Hokkaido University, Japan. My research interests lie in the area of Cytogenetics, Molecular Genetics, Gene manipulation, Gene expression, Genetic Toxicology and immunogenetics. I am the Editor in Chief of Alexandria Journal of Veterinary Medicine and serving as editorial board members and reviewers of many well reputed journals.
Thirty three research students altogether awarded Master and Ph. D degrees under her direct supervision and he has over 30 publications in international peer-reviewed journals with citation over 300 times and her publication H-index is 11.
Abeer F. El-Nahas is the co-author of numerous articles published in prestigious journals, including: Fish & Shellfish Immunology, Environmental Science and Pollution Research, Gene, Basic and Clinical Pharmacology and Toxicology, Pharmaceutical Biology, Ecotoxicology and Environmental Safety, Oxidative Medicine and Cellular Longevity, and others

  • Volgograd Research Anti-plague , Russia
  • Title:Modification of the Francis Medium for the Conversion of Histoplasma Capsulatum to the Yeast-Like Growth Phase
  • Time :

Histoplasmosis is a dangerous deep systemic mycosis that occurs in people even with preserved immune status, which can occur as respiratory distress syndrome, tuberculosis and other deseases. The importance of verification of diagnosis is associated with the vital necessity of prescribing etiotropic antimycotic therapy for patients. The causative agent of histoplasmosis is the fungus Histoplasma capsulatum which exists in two phases – the mycelial (in the external environment) and the tissue (in the macroorganism). Proof of micromycete dimorphism is the basis for laboratory diagnostics of histoplasmosis, however, there is a problem of conversion of the pathogen into the tissue (yeast) phase on nutrient media in vitro.  The Francis medium is most known for this purpose, but in our studies FT-agar, intended for the cultivation of a special whimsicality to growth conditions tularemia microbe, enriched with fermented and defibrinated blood, D-glucose, sulfur-containing amino acids and vitamins complex proved to be  significantly more effective.  The number of colony-forming units on the FT-based Frensis medium compared with Francis medium or  FT-agar  without the appropriate additives in all the observations was significantly higher (p<0,01-0,001). The results obtained allow us to recommend this environment for practical use. These studies are confirmed by a Patent (RU 2 704 278 C1).

Dr. Novitskaya I. V. has graduated from Volgograd State Medical University, Russia. For a long time, she has been working at the Volgograd research anti-plague Institute as the head of the Department and an associate Professor of the Faculty of molecular biology and genetics of the  medical University. Her research interests include Mycology, cell biology, biotechnology, diagnostics of dangerous and opportunistic infections. She is the author of more than 100 scientific papers, including Patents and Author’s certificates.


  • Dept RDDM , France
  • Title:Redox Properties of Mono- and Tri-Cyclic Cyanoenones Correlated with their Efficacy as Inducers of a Cytoprotective Phase 2 Enzyme and as Protectors against Inflammation: Potency Ranking
  • Time :

Induction of the Phase 2 enzymes is a major strategy in the chemoprotection against cancer. Inducers belong to nine different chemical classes. In this contribution we found that a measure of the tendency of thirty plant phenylpropenoids and synthetic analogues to release electrons correlates linearly with their potency in inducing the activity of NAD(P)H:quinone reductase (NQO1), a prototypic Phase 2 cancer protective enzyme.  The tendency to release electrons was determined by the energy of the highest occupied molecular orbital (EHOMO), calculated by simple quantum mechanical methods. The correlations observed establish a clear conclusion: the smaller the absolute Energy of the Highest Occupied Molecular Orbital (EHOMO) of an agent, the greater its inducer potency, (i.e., the lower its oxidation potential, the stronger its electron donor property and the greater its inducer potency). The finding of this redox ranking of the inducers demonstrates that it is possible to predictively control the genetic expression of an enzymatic defense against cancer by xenobiotics via one physical parameter, their EHOMO.

  • Colombiana de Trasplantes ,Colombia
  • Title:Hand-Assisted Laparoscopic Nephrectomy: Evaluation of the Learning Curve
  • Time :

Background. Hand-assisted laparoscopic donor nephrectomy (HALDN) has rapidly become the best alternative to open nephrectomy for living kidney donation. As more centers continue to adopt the laparoscopic technique, the safety of the initial transplants must be ensured while ascending the learning curve (LC). This study looks to determine the safety of HALDN and to describe the results of the LC in our center.
Methods. We conducted a retrospective review of 500 HALDNs performed in our center from July 2003 to July 2017. We analyzed demographic and perioperative characteristics and complications during the first postoperative month. We divided HALDNs into 2 groups: before and after completing the LC (50 nephrectomies). For each group, we assessed operating room time, estimated blood loss, length of stay, and complication and conversion rates.
Results. A total of 500 HALDNs were performed in the study period. Of those, 454 were analyzed in the 2 groups. The median operating room time was 2 hours, length of stay was 2 days, and blood loss was 50 cc. The overall rate of complication was 6.8%. There were significant differences between the 2 groups in operating time, blood loss, and length of stay (P < .05). No differences were found in terms of complication (P 1⁄4 .42) and con- version (P 1⁄4 .28) rates.
Conclusion. There was a significant decrease in operating time, blood loss, and length of stay in patients who underwent laparoscopic donor nephrectomy by an experienced lapa- roscopist. However, no differences were found in complication and conversion rates, which suggests that improvement in surgical training can be accomplished without altering the donor safety.

  • USA
  • Title:Analysis of Glycosylation in Monoclonal Antibodies
  • Time :

Monoclonal antibodies (MAbs) are rapidly growing class of therapeutic molecules in biopharmaceuticals. More than 80 therapeutic antibodies have been approved by the FDA in the last 30 years for different indications ranging from oncology to autoimmune diseases to respiratory diseases and the number is increasing year by year. Most of the current therapeutic antibodies are immunoglobulin G (IgG) with glycosylation constituting around 3% of the total mass of the molecule. Understanding the impact of glycosylation and close monitoring is critical for monoclonal antibodies and fusion proteins development as therapeutic molecule. Different forms of glycan including sialic acid (NANA/NGNA), galactose, mannose and fucose influence safety, efficacy and pharmacodynamics/pharmacokinetic property (PD/PK) of the therapeutic monoclonal antibodies and fusion proteins. This presentation will highlight the influence of different glycan variants on the drug’s behaviour in the body and draw attention to commonly employed analytical techniques to analyse therapeutic molecules and determine and quantify glycan composition, structure and glycosylation site in them.

Dr Harleen Kaur has been in the pharmaceutical industry for almost 8 years and most recently led the analytics and drug product tech transfer projects for two biologics products while working at AstraZeneca, USA. Prior to this, she worked in R&D division of Fujitsu Asia Pte Ltd in Singapore where she worked on aptamer development and played an integral role in identifying and purifying aptamers against different protein targets in collaboration with National University of Singapore, Agency of Science Technology and Research Singapore, and Japanese diagnostic enterprise Sysmex. In her current role, Dr Kaur is leading a team of analytical scientists at Aurobindo Biologics and her responsibilities include the method development, method qualification and method transfer for different biosimilar products. Dr Kaur completed her PhD in chemical and biomolecular engineering department at National University of Singapore.



  • Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine,USA
  • Title:Use of Contact Lenses to Optimize Optical Coherence Tomography Scans of the Optic Nerve in Open Angle Glaucoma Suspects or Patients with Open Angle Glaucoma with High Myopia
  • Time :

Patients with myopia are at increased risk for the development of glaucoma. The inability to correct for axial length on spectral domain OCT (SD-OCT) imaging translates into a lower signal strength and scan reliability in patients with high myopia. We evaluated the effectiveness of a contact lens to increase the signal strength, assess optic nerve dimensions and nerve fiber layer thickness using SD-OCT in patients with glaucoma or who are glaucoma suspects with high axial myopia.
Methods- A single-center, prospective, interventional study of patients with axial lengths over 25.5 mm with a diagnosis of glaucoma or glaucoma suspect. The optic nerve cube 200 x 200 scan using the Cirrus SD-OCT 400 was taken first without and then repeated after the placement of the contact lens. The primary outcome measure was the change in the average nerve fiber layer thickness before and after use of the contact lens. Secondary outcome measures included the change in cup volume, disc area, and rim area.
Results- Twelve patients were recruited (20 eyes) and the average axial length was 27.06 mm and the average signal strength interval increased by 1.73 (p= 0.001). With the use of a contact lens, the average nerve fiber layer thickness was significantly thicker. None of the changes in the secondary outcome measures were significant: rim area, cup volume, or disc area. Conclusions- Based on our data, the use of a contact lens statistically improved the signal strength and average nerve fiber layer thickness of the SD-OCT scan. The ability to accurately capture the perimeter of the optic disc can be limited in the setting of peripapillary atrophy, which was present in all but two subjects. Future studies with a larger number of subjects and a wider range of axial myopia to discern if contact lens correction has a greater effect on the highest axial lengths are needed.

Meghan K. Berkenstock: Dr. Berkenstock has become an emerging leader in the field of ocular immunology. As an Assistant Professor of Ophthalmology at the Wilmer Eye Institute of the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, her research focuses on quality improvement and identifying and treating ocular side effects of oncologic immunotherapy medications.

  • Immune-Oncological Center Cologne,Germany
  • Title:Cancer Vaccines Modified by Virus Infection: Concept, Mechanism of Function and Clinical Results
  • Time :

Biological therapies such as immunotherapy and oncolytic virotherapy are physiological and well tolerated by cancer patients. The combination of cancer vaccines with oncolytic viruses is a powerful concept. Two types of autologous cancer vaccines will be described which are modified by infection with the avian Newcastle disease virus. They instruct the immune system about relevant cancer targets (tumor antigens, TAs) and contain signals for innate immunity activation. Viral molecular patterns such as S’-PPP RNA and hemagglutininneuraminidase (HN) protein initiate early inflammatory defense reactions which contribute to activation of antigen-presenting cells (APCs) and to costimulation of T cells. The concommitant stimulation of TA-specific CD4+ and CD8+ T cells occurs in T-APC clusters. These generate cancer-reactive cytotoxic T lymphocytes (CTLs) and T cell mediated long-term immunological memory. Results from pre-clinical and clinical studies will be presented.

Volker Schirrmacher is Scientific Director of Tumorimmunology at aAZK, Cologne, Germany. He finished his studies of biochemistry with a PhD in immunology. After 5 years post-doc time in Stockholm, Sweden and London, UK, he became Full Professor and Head of Division of Cellular lmmunology at the German Cancer Research Center, Heidelberg, Germany. This position was hold for 32 years until official retirement in 2008. His scientific oevre covers more than 400 peer-reviewed publications and several books. He was awarded the Aronson Price, the Meyenburg Price and the German Cancer Award.