Location & dates EMBL Heidelberg, Germany 15 - 18 Mar 2020 Register interest
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Symposium Overview

One of the major outcomes of research using model organisms is that we are far from knowing all the functions fulfilled by various organs in vertebrates or invertebrates. Deleting one gene at a time in a single cell type is at the origin of unprecedented progress in our understanding of how homeostasis is maintained at the level of an entire organism. As a result, modern physiology has slowly moved from a purely molecular discipline back to being a truly holistic one. This molecular genetic and yet holistic approach to physiology has had an effect on energy metabolism, the control of blood pressure, the plasticity of cognitive and immune functions, as well as the multiple ways in which organs such as fat, bone or gut can exert control over other organs such as the brain. Symbiotic interactions with resident microbes have added a further dimension to the study of host physiology. 

This symposium aims to provide a high visibility platform to scientists who use modern molecular genetic tools to discover inter-organ communications, and therefore to illustrate how much our molecular and genetic understanding of whole-organism physiology has progressed in the last 20 years. Bringing together scientists interested in various aspect of a single discipline, whole-organism physiology, will foster interactions between physiologists working in different fields in order to speed up the discovery of novel physiologies. This meeting will also directly address a central question of physiology:  How can recent developments in whole-organism physiology pave the way to novel and adapted therapies for multiple degenerative diseases? Lastly, it will showcase an approach to modern biology that starts from a question paused at the level of the entire organism and is answered through genetic means at the molecular level.

Session Topics

  • Brain-body crosstalk
  • The gut and its microbes
  • Bone and blood signals
  • Fat and liver signals
  • Immune-metabolic crosstalk
  • Beyond hormones: non-canonical inter-organ communication