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28 Feb 2012 Cancer Research UK Symposium (9th to 10th February 2012) 

Title of Symposium: Interdisciplinary approaches for the study of senescence
UK Scientific Lead: Masashi Narita, MD, PhD, Senior Group Leader, Cancer Research UK, Cambridge Research Institute
Scientific Lead from Japan: Toru Kondo, PhD
Period of Symposium and Location: 9th to 10th February 2012, Cancer Research UK, Cambridge Research Institute (CRUK,CRI)


Invited Speakers:

JSPS Supported from Japan:

Toru Kondo, Ehime University
Keisuke Okita, Kyoto University
Hiroyuki Kugoh, Tottori University
Hiroshi Kimura, Osaka University
Masayuki Miura, University of Tokyo

UK based:

Jesus Gil, MRC Clinical Sciences Centre
Nicol Keith, University of Glasgow
Peter Adams, Beatson Institute for Cancer Research
Gordon Peters, London Research Institute
David Beach – Keynote Speaker, Barts and the London School of Medicine and Dentistry


Report:

The event was divided into two parts, the first day was a one-day symposium and the second day was for individual discussions between the Japanese speakers and local scientists, the latter including group leaders, postdocs, and students at the Cambridge Research Institute (CRI). The second day also included an opportunity for the Japanese speakers to know how the CRUK CRI and our core facilities support for our research are run.

The number of registrants for the symposium was 133, which included not only researchers from Cambridge but also researchers from other areas, such as London, Cardiff, and even Paris. The Symposium was well received by the attendees and the local community and there were active questions and discussions during and after the symposium. The dinner reception at Jesus College hosted by Prof. Sir Bruce Ponder, the director of the CRI, was also successful. While a few invited speakers from the UK had to miss the dinner, we also invited several researchers from the CRI, who expressed their interest in the topic. There were active discussions in a friendly atmosphere, which I believe created additional inspiring moments to attendees at the dinner.

During the second day, there were a number of sessions for discussion between each Japanese invitee and local researchers. The schedule was very tight, but I heard a lot of positive feedback from the UK researchers. Such feedback included an active exchange of ideas and precious resources. I hope this event will contribute to extend our UK-Japan joint research community, and will trigger and facilitate future UK-Japan collaborations. In my own case, I promised that I will visit Prof. Miura at University of Tokyo and Prof. Kugoh at Tottori University when I have the chance next time I am in Japan to discuss our potential collaborations.

In summary, the level of scientific presentations made was superb, and there was an exciting mixture of topic and ideas among the Japanese and UK researchers, which will undoubtedly foster future collaborations among us. – Masashi Narita, Cancer Research UK, Cambridge Research Institute.


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