EMBO Conference: Advances in Stem Cells and Regenerative Medicine

Over 300 stem cell scientists from 55 countries met at the EMBL ATC in Heidelberg for the EMBO Conference: Advances in Stem Cells and Regenerative Medicine in May 2017. This event was co-sponsored by EMBO and three European stem cell consortia; PluriMes, ThymiStem & REVIVE and was organised in collaboration with the EMBL. The Programme Committee consisted of Olivier Pourquie (PluriMes, France), Clare Blackburn (ThymiStem, UK), Shahragim Tajbakhsh (REVIVE, France), Donal O’Carroll (University of Edinburgh, UK), Claus Nerlov (University of Oxford, UK) and Thomas Graf (Center for Genomic Regulation, Spain).

This 3.5 day event included 3 keynote talks, 28 invited talks and 15 short talks. There were also three poster sessions (comprising 152 posters), a speed networking event, three “meet the speakers” lunches, a “meet the journal editor” lunch, a session on public engagement with interactive activities and a session entitled “EMBO Press discussion session: ‘Whereto Science Publishing’”. There was a lot of interactive networking and discussion time which particularly focused on encouraging engagement between young/early career researchers and their more senior peers.

Editors from 7 journals (EMBO Journal, EMBO Molecular Medicine, Nature Communications, Nature, Nature Cell Biology, Development and Cell Stem Cell) took part in the programme. They participated in the “meet the journal editors” lunch, the “whereto science publishing” session, as well as in the poster prize judging.

One of the ultimate goals of stem cell biologists is to learn more about the development, homeostasis and regeneration of organisms, and to apply this knowledge to understand disease progression and eventually contribute to regenerative medicine. The organisers provided a comprehensive and exciting program covering these themes and showcasing new perspectives on stem cells. The talks provided coverage of diverse stem cell systems, with some common principles emerging.

Development commissioned a meeting review written by Christine Scheel and Alecia-Jane Twigger.