NOX Family NADPH Oxidases Gordon Research Seminar (GRS): Biological Roles of NADPH Oxidases: Insights into Fundamental Mechanisms and Therapeutic Potential

NOX Family NADPH Oxidases Gordon Research Seminar (GRS): Biological Roles of NADPH Oxidases: Insights into Fundamental Mechanisms and Therapeutic Potential

Dates and site: Les Diablerets, Switzerland, May 26th-27th 2018

Chairs: David E. Heppner (Harvard Medical School, Postdoctoral Research Associate, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Boston, USA) and Aikaterini Anagnostopoulou (University of Glasgow, Research Associate, BHF Cardiovascular Research Center, Glasgow, Scotland, UK)

Cardiovascular disorders including hypertension, cardiac myopathies and others are fundamentally associated with Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS) and the key enzymes producing ROS are NADPH Oxidases (NOX).  Even though, NOX-induced ROS/oxidative stress signalling has been linked to cell migration, cell proliferation/apoptosis, actin cytoskeleton assembly/disassembly, vascular contraction, vascular remodelling, fibrosis and inflammation, how NOXs in smooth muscle cells (VSMCs) and endothelial cells (ECs) regulate these cell functions is not clear. It is uncertain what the function of ROS  is in specific compartmentalization of vascular cells including cell membrane, caveolae, endoplasmic reticulum, mitochondria and nucleus. What is happening at the forefront of basic and translational NOX research and NOX drug discovery efforts is presented and debated by young investigator researchers every two years at the NOX Family NADPH Oxidases Gordon Research Seminar (GRS).

The NADPH Oxidases Gordon Research Seminar is a highly, successful and unique forum for young researchers including graduate students, post-docs, and other scientists with comparable levels of experience and education to present and exchange new data and cutting edge ideas.  This is a great opportunity for young researchers to build informal networks with their peers that may lead to a lifetime of collaboration and scientific achievement in the NOX field.  The NOX GRS which is held in conjunction with the NOX Gordon Research Conference attracts researchers working in the NOX field and feature state-of-the-art oral and poster presentations comprising the latest unpublished work from various research labs who are working in the NOX/Redox signalling.

The NOX Family NADPH Oxidases GRS 2018: Biological roles of NADPH Oxidases: Insights into Fundamental Mechanisms and Therapeutic Potential was a two-day seminar (Saturday and Sunday) which was held on May 26th-27th 2018 at Les Diablerets, Switzerland.  The NOX GRS seminar consisted of three sessions of Oral presentations and two poster sessions.  19 people attended the meeting where 13 young investigators presented their work in either the oral (10 talks) and/or poster sessions (13 poster).  The attendees came from Brazil, USA and Europe (France, Italy, Netherlands, Slovakia, Spain, Switzerland and UK).

The Oral presentation program consisted of three sessions: Session I: Structure and Regulation of NADPH Oxidase Enzymes; Session II: Biological Roles of NADPH Oxidases and Redox Signalling: From the Single Cell to the Complex Organism and Session III: NADPH Oxidases in Health and Disease.  Each presentation consisted of 15-20 mins followed by 5 mins of discussion.  The two poster sessions were one and a half hours. During the oral and poster sessions, there were ample opportunities for discussions and interactions between the young investigators and the invited senior scientists. The oral/poster sessions consisted of multidisciplinary aspects in the study of NOX enzymes from perspectives of molecular-level structure and function to relevance in health and disease including cardiovascular, cancer, pulmonary, and inflammatory diseases.

The GRS also featured a one hour mentorship/career panel of four invited speakers who are experts in the NOX/DUOX field or related research themes.  The four speakers who were part of the Mentorship panel were Ulla Knaus, Conway Institute, University College Dublin, Ireland; Albert van der Vliet, University of Vermont, USA; Patrick Pagano, University of Pittsburgh, USA and Nancy Hynes, Friedrich Miescher Institute for Biomedical Research, Switzerland.  The mentorship panel consisted of questions/discussions in career development and personal experiences on career trajectories from a graduate student to a successful scientist.  GRS participants were able to interact with the mentors during the GRS and the “NOX Family NADPH Oxidases” GRC meeting which was held in Les Diablerets on May 27th until June 1st 2018 right after the GRS.

Based on GRS meeting evaluations filled in by the GRS participants, the meeting was successful in terms of NOX science and scientific and social interactions.  Based on the evaluations, the young investigators found the program and oral/poster presentations interesting and insightful and they liked the diversity of different topics in the NADPH oxidases field.  It gave them a great opportunity to interact with other participants and senior scientists to talk about their research projects and technical issues.  Furthermore, the young investigators found the career panel valuable and enlightening.

The GRS chairs are very grateful to the British Society of Cardiovascular Research (BSCR) for the generous contribution of £150 as a poster prize for a young investigator. Marta Ceccon (Scuola Universitaria Superiore, University of Padia, Italy, PhD student) was awarded the BSCR poster prize for her poster entitled “Biochemical and structural characterization of Nox5.” The BSCR contribution was acknowledged during the GRS meeting and it will be included in the GRC President’s annual report.

   Mrs. Mart Ceccon