14th International HLA & Immunogenetics Workship (HIWS)


Principal Investigator: JOHN ANDREW HANSEN
Abstract: The 14th International HLA and Immunogenetics Workshop will be held at The University of Melbourne, Australia, between November 29-December 3, 2005. All 13 previous workshops have been held in the northern hemisphere. The Workshop brings together leading international scientists studying HLA and immunogenetics to discuss the findings of collaborative research projects. The Workshop aims to address specific scientific questions through multicenter international collaboration that leads to development of publically available research resources. The Workshop actvities include: 1. Characterization of genetic polymorphisms that control the outcome of solid organ and hemopoietic stem cell transplantation, 2. Genetic control of immune responses to infectious disease, cancer and autoimmune disorders, 3. Creation of genetic databases of immune response genes including HLA alleles and haplotypes, 4. Development of bioinformatic and statistical tools for analysis of genetic data, 5. Definition of minor antigens in transplantation, 6. characterization of peptides bound to HLA molecules, 7. Standardization of gene testing protocols and MHC gene nomenclature, 8. creation of diversity cell panels used worldwide, 9. Anthropological definition of human variation in immune response genes, 10. Development of high density SNP databases for disease gene mapping, 11. definition of KIR gene diversity, 12. Virtual matching techniques in transplantation. The 14th IHIWS is unique in the extent of international collaboration involved in each of the research projects and the remarkable scientific networking this activity promotes within the HLA and immunogenetics research community. This allows pooling of data that has been collected using standardised protocols imparting much greater power to research projects. Standardised reagents are shared between participants and assays undergo quality control in each of the participating laboratories. The workshop will be a major forum for benchmarking advances in technology, facilitating their exchange across international boundaries and implementation of new advances through industry uptake of Workshop opportunities. The data from the workshop will be archived in a publicly accessible database supported by the US National Institutes of Health. Workshop reports and abstracts will be published in the peer-reviewed literature and in a Workshop book. A core of 6 leading investigators will be invited as speakers and 10 scientists from developing nations will be supported as participants or speakers. Four Bursaries will also be offered to postdoctoral scientists on a merit basis. The program will present and discuss workshop projects. The Workshop will be open to all interested students, trainees, scientists and clinicans. The scientific exchange that will take place at the meeting will drive research and maintain international collaboration in immunogenetics for the next 5 years.
Funding Period: 2005-06-01 - 2006-05-31
more information: NIH RePORT