More than one billion people worldwide contract fungal infections on an annual basis. For the most part, these are superficial infections that have a severe impact on the quality of life. Invasive fungal infections can affect a select group of patients with specific predisposing factors, yet around 1.5 million people die each year as a result of invasive fungal infections.
A deep immunological understanding of fungal infections is crucial in order to reduce the fungal impact on human health. Advances in the field of fungal immunology over the past few years have identified crucial factors that predispose patients to fungal infections, including genetic factors. Essential pathways in mucosal and systemic immune responses to fungi have been uncovered. Most importantly, the increasing knowledge in the immunology of fungal infections has initiated the development of novel therapeutic strategies aimed at improving antifungal immunity or suppressing detrimental immune pathways. Despite these advances, many questions about the complex interaction of fungi, microbiome, and immune system remain unanswered. Therefore, the Gordon Research Seminar provides a platform for early career scientists to build collaborations with clinicians and industry in order to translate fundamental research into personalized medicine and diagnostics for fungal infections.
Early-career medical mycologists will be brought together as one collective force at the Immunology of Fungal Infections Gordon Research Seminar to share novel insights, cutting-edge ideas, and new model systems. This can facilitate participating PhD students, post-docs, and young investigators from all over the world to build future collaborations, network, and interact in an informal atmosphere with leading faculty from fundamental as well as clinical research that will be present as discussion leaders and mentors.
The collective goal is to help our community understand the latest insights in the mechanisms at play in fungal-host interactions, the immune pathways that protect against fungal infections, and how we can exploit this knowledge to develop novel therapeutic and diagnostic strategies.
The seminar will feature approximately 10 talks and 2 poster sessions. All attendees are expected to actively participate in the GRS, either by giving an oral presentation or presenting a poster. Therefore, all applications must include an abstract.
The seminar chair will select speakers from abstracts submitted by March 26, 2021. Those applicants who are not chosen for talks and those who apply after the deadline to be considered for an oral presentation will be expected to present a poster. In order to participate, you must submit an application by the date indicated in the Application Information section above.
Gordon Research Seminars are 2-day meetings which take place on the Saturday and Sunday just prior to the start of the associated GRC. The GRS opens with a 1-hour introductory session on Saturday afternoon, followed by a poster session, dinner and a 2-hour session in the evening. Sunday morning begins with breakfast and is followed by another 2-hour session, a second poster session, and lunch. A final 1-hour session takes place just after lunch, and the associated GRC begins later that evening.