This conference has been withdrawn from the 2020 conference schedule
As you are aware, coronavirus is having a global impact and the World Health Organization and the Centers for Disease Control have instituted recommendations that include social distancing and cancelling conferences and large gatherings. Since safety of our attendees is always GRC's highest priority, the GRC Board of Trustees has decided to withdraw this conference and it will be rescheduled for 2022. This decision was made out of an abundance of caution and to alleviate the concerns of our conference communities that are scheduled to meet in this timeframe.
Nature has evolved a wide array of photosensory systems to enable organisms to sense and respond to their light environment. In plants, microbes and animals, including humans, tremendously diverse photosensory signal transduction architectures have been identified. At this Gordon Research Conference, scientists from all over the world gather to present and discuss the full palette of photosensory systems that Nature has provided, aiming to understand their mechanisms, signaling pathways and functional effects – from the level of atoms and molecules to that of the physiology of organisms and the ecosystems that they constitute. Photosensory receptors provide unique opportunities to understand the essential principles of signal transduction and protein function because they can be activated by light, rendering them amenable to state-of-the art physical, chemical and chemical biological experimental methods. In this way, the central question of how light-induced microscopic molecular changes produce macroscopic biological signals can be addressed in unprecedented detail.
Research of photosensory signaling has enormous practical application. The modular architecture of photosensory systems in combination with their genetic encodability provides the foundation for the field of optogenetics, wherein photoreceptors and their interaction pathways are engineered to noninvasively control cellular processes with light. Studies of phototransduction in the eye enable the treatment of retinal diseases, circadian dysfunction and mood disorders. In addition, understanding the networks of photosensory signaling has great potential for optimization of photosynthesis and rational engineering of crop performance, with implications for mitigating the adverse consequences of climate change.
The program consists of invited oral contributions by established and emerging scholars in the field, augmented by oral contributions selected from submitted abstracts and extensive poster session time. This GRC will be organized in conjunction with a preceding Gordon Research Seminar that will provide junior researchers opportunities to present and their work and be mentored by more senior scientists.