ScanBalt Forum 2019 – report

On September 24-25 the international conference ScanBalt Forum 2019 was held in Gdańsk. Conference was co-organized by ScanBalt, International Centre for Cancer Vaccine Science, Intercollegiate Faculty of Biotechnology UG&MUG, University of Gdańsk, Medical University of Gdańsk and Foundation for the Development of the University of Gdańsk.

ScanBalt is an organisation of institutions from the Baltic Sea area, in which the University of Gdańsk is also a partner. ScanBalt Forum, on a rotating basis, moves from region to region as an annual event. The scope is to discuss ongoing activities and plan new ones, coordinate between projects and ensure synergies.

In line with the title of the conference Molecular Biology and Immunology of Cancer – R&D Perspectives this year’s theme of ScanBalt Forum was cancer.

Conference participants could listen to interesting lectures on biology and immunology of cancer as well as learn about the proposals for new therapies. Professor Jan Dumański (3P-Medicine/Medical University of Gdańsk/Uppsala Universitet) opened the conference with a lecture on the loss of the Y chromosome, while Keynote speaker, professor Susanne Gabrielsson (Karolinska Institutet), gave a lecture on the biology and potential of exosomes in cancer.

In addition, participants also had the opportunity to hear the lectures of dr. Margarida Rei (University of Oxford), prof. Ted Hupp (International Centre for Cancer Vaccine Science/University of Gdańsk/University of Edinburgh), prof. Andrzej Mackiewicz (Adam Mickiewicz University/Medical University of Poznań), prof. Robin Fahraeus (International Centre for Cancer Vaccine Science/University of Gdańsk/INSERM), prof. Karin Jirström (Lund University), dr Anna Żaczek (Intercollegiate Faculty of Biotechnology UG&MUG) and prof. Michael Kirschfink (Universität Heidelberg).

The second day was dedicated to academia-industry cooperation. Projects and organisations, among others EIT Health, BiC project and STARBIOS2, had the possibility to present their activities and to establish relations with the conference attendees.

The conference was accompanied by the poster session involving phd students and postdoctoral researchers presenting the results of ongoing studies.

The conference ended with a lecture by dr. Lynn Sherrer (Elsevier) on the publication of scientific articles.

The conference Scientific Committee was composed of dr hab. Danuta Gutowska (chair, Intercollegiate Faculty of Biotechnology UG&MUG), dr hab. Marcin Okrój (Intercollegiate Faculty of Biotechnology UG&MUG) and prof. Natalia Marek-Trzonkowska (ICCVS).