“From Genomes to Functions” is the theme of the 2005 International Congress, scheduled to open on Thursday, March 31, 2005, for a five-and-a-half-day run at the San Diego Convention Center in San Diego, CA. This Congress is the first to be held in the United States since 1968 and only the third ever to be held in the United States. The 2005 Congress is also the first Congress of the International Union of Physiological Sciences (IUPS) ever to be held in conjunction with another meeting—in this case, Experimental Biology 2005. The previous IUPS Congress—held in Christchurch, New Zealand in 2001—drew about 2,500 registrants, who presented 1,100 abstracts. For the 2005 meeting, we expect that about 6,000 will register as physiologists; they will present nearly 3,000 abstracts. The total registration for EB2005 will probably be around 12,500, because EB2005 is a meeting of seven FASEB Societies. Besides the IUPS, San Diego will be hosting:
The American Association of Anatomists,
The American Association of Immunologists,
The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology,
The American Society for Investigative Pathology,
The American Society for Nutritional Sciences, and
The American Society for Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics.
Thus the 2005 Congress will not only provide the usual quadrennial venue for physiologists to meet physiologists from around the globe, it will also provide an opportunity for physiologists to interact with biomedical scientists from a variety of other disciplines.
Although the IUPS Congress will take place in conjunction with EB2005, the Congress will have its own identity. One important distinction is that the 2005 Congress, with its March 31 opening, will begin a day and a half before the main EB meeting. Another is that the 2005 Congress will close a full day before the rest of the EB meeting. Finally, the IUPS will meet at the southern end of the portion of the Convention Center used for the EB2005. This arrangement will give the physiologists some sense of individuality while at the same time allowing them to feel part of a very large gathering of biomedical scientists.
The opening ceremony of the 2005 Congress will take place at the Convention Center on Thursday evening, March 31. Following the formal welcoming addresses, Peter Agre will deliver the Wallace O. Fenn Lecture. Afterward is the first of three major social events associated with the 2005 Congress: a dinner reception on the Convention Center Terrace, overlooking San Diego Harbor, to the sounds of live American jazz.
The main scientific program will begin on the morning of Friday, April 1. A defining feature of the 2005 Congress is a series of 14 tracks. Each will take the participants on a journey in one physiological subdiscipline in a series of lectures, symposia, and featured topics (one or two 30-minute lectures followed by platform presentations chosen from among the submitted abstracts). These journeys will include talks or entire sessions devoted to examining the subject from several vantage points, including the proteins underlying the physiology, the genetics and genomics, translational research, and an integrative look at the whole organ, the whole animal, or even the whole ecosystem.
The Congress’s second major social event will take place on Friday evening. Dubbed the IUPS Beach Party, it will be a casual barbeque designed around Southern Californian beach music.
The closing ceremonies for the 2005 Congress take place at Copley Symphony Hall. After a dinner reception, the American delegation will transfer the IUPS flag to the Japanese delegation, who will host the 2009 Congress in Kyoto. The social highlight of the evening will be the world premier of Body Notes, composed by American Physiological Society member Hector Rasgado-Flores and performed by the San Diego Chamber Orchestra under the baton of Maestro Nuvi Mehta. The orchestra will also play works of American composers Samuel Barber and Aaron Copeland.
The 2005 Congress has several links to this journal. The Editor-in-Chief of the journal is also the chair of the US Scientific Programming Committee and the International Scientific Programming Committee, which are jointly responsible for the scientific content of the meeting. Several authors of reviews published in the previous three issues of Physiology will be speaking in San Diego: Denis Noble and Gregg Semenza from the August 2004 issue, Susan Quaggin and Fred Gage from the October issue, and Ed Weinman and Ernest Wright from the December issue. Moreover, Takayuki Asahara, Jack Elias, and Arthur Konnerth—authors in the present issue—will also be speaking. Upcoming authors who are presenting include Erik Richter (Adolph Distinguished Lecturer), Sylvie Breton, Ingrid Fleming, Mark Nelson, and Manuel Palacin. Finally, several members of the Physiology Editorial Board will be speaking at the 2005 Congress, including Sten Grillner (Erlanger Distinguished Lecturer), Amira Klip (Berson Distinguished Lecturer), Michael Caplan, Heini Murer, Curt Sigmund, William Sessa, and José Lopez-Barneo.
I hope to see all fans of physiology and of Physiology at the Congress. The scientific program promises to be extremely strong, and it will be hard to beat the venue or your colleagues who will be enjoying it!
- © 2005 Int. Union Physiol. Sci./Am. Physiol. Soc.