The Regenerative, Modular & Developmental Engineering Laboratory (REMODEL), NUI Galway hosted the third annual meeting of the Matrix Biology Ireland (MBI), from the 16th to the 18th of November 2016. The scope of the meeting was to promote and consolidate scientific interest and expertise around extracellular matrix research in all its forms within Ireland, and, to link this with the international scientific community on Matrix Biology. The theme of this year’s meeting was ‘Repairing the matrix – Disease manifestation and therapeutic strategies’.
The meeting was opened by Prof Pól Ó Dochartaigh (Registrar and Deputy President at NUI Galway) and Prof Lokesh Joshi (Vice President for Research at NUI Galway), who welcomed the national and international delegates. Prof Taina Pihlajaniemi (University of Oulu, Finland) delivered the first invited lecture of the meeting; she spoke about using collagens as microenvironmental modulators in healthy and diseased tissues. The first day proceeded to focus on the role of scaffolds in tissue and matrix regeneration with invited speakers included Dr Petra Mela (RWTH Aachen University, Germany), Dr Yves Bayon (Medtronic, France), Prof Mauro Alini (AO Foundation, Switzerland), Prof Frank Barry (NUI Galway, Ireland), Prof Daniel Kelly (Trinity College Dublin, Ireland), Prof Thoma Ritter (NUI Galwya, Ireland), Prof Stavros Taraviras (University of Patras, Greece) and Prof Eleni Papadaki (Univerity of Crete, Greece). The day ended with a welcome wine reception at the Oyster Bar in the Meyrick Hotel.
The second day of the meeting was mostly focussed on orthopaedics and cancer, starting with invited talks from Dr Manuela Gomes (University of Minho, Portugal), Prof Denitsa Docheva (Ludwig-Maximilians University of Munich, Germany) and Prof Tero Jarvinen (University of Tampere, Finland) about tendon tissue engineering and regeneration, which were followed, later in the day, by Dr Jayesh Dudhia (Royal Veterinary College, UK) and Mr Stephen Kearns (NUI Galway, Ireland) who provided a better understanding of the clinical aspect of tendon repair. Prof Martin Stoddart (AO Foundation, Switzerland) and Prof Laoise McNamara (NUI Galway, Ireland) and Prof Caitriona Lally (Trinity Colege Dublin, Ireland) provided insight into the influence of mechanobiology in health and disease. Regarding cancer, invited speakers included Prof William Gallagher (University College Dublin, Ireland), Dr Aoife Lowery (University of Limerick, Ireland) and Prof Caitriona O´Driscoll (University College Cork, Ireland). Prof Alan Boyde (Queen Mary University London, UK) closed the day with a talk about age and decay in the lumbar vertebral body.
The third and final day of the conference covered a wide range of topics (e.g. collagen characterisation, tissue glyco-signature, gene delivery, mechanobiology and numerous pathophysiologies, such as Crohn’s disease, arthritis). Invited talks were delivered from Prof Tara Moore (Ulster University, UK), Prof Fergal O’Brien (Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland, Ireland), Dr Michael Monaghan (Trinity College Dublin, Ireland), Dr Sally Ann Cryan (Royal College of Surgeons Ireland, Ireland), Dr Manus Biggs (NUI Galway, Ireland), Prof Gerry Wilson (University College Dublin, Ireland), Prof Laurence Egan (NUI Galway, Ireland), Dr Mark Watson (Molecular Medicine Ireland, Ireland). The day ended with a closing statement from Prof Fabio Quondamatteo (University of Glasgow, UK), who also introduced the new executive committee that will serve from 2017 to 2019. The student prizes were awarded to: Ms Swarna Raman (NUI Galway, Ireland) for best podium presentation; Ms Laura Gallagher (Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland, Ireland) and Ms Hollie Allison (NUI Galway, Ireland) for joint runner-up best podium presentations; and Ms Zhuning Wu (NUI Galway, Ireland) for best poster presentation.
The MBI 2016 organising committee would like to acknowledge the support of the following sponsors and exhibitors: Biocolor, Santa Cruz Biotechnology, Brennan & Company, Proxy Biomedical and Tendon Therapy Train (Horizon 2020 Project).
REMODEL is also extending their best wishes for success to MBI and the new executive committee.
For further information, please visit the society website (www.mbi.ie) and for membership enquiries please contact the MBI secretary at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Diana Gaspar and Dimitrios Zeugolis (Organiser MB 2016 and President Elect, MBI)
Regenerative, Modular & Developmental Engineering Laboratory (REMODEL)
Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) Centre for Research in Medical Devices (CÚRAM)
National University of Ireland Galway (NUI Galway), Galway, Ireland