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Alumni Association News 2009

2 October 2009

5th Local Chapter meeting in Portugal

lecture-sAnne-Claude talking to EMBL alumni and IBMC staff.

restaurant-sl-r: Luis Ferreira Moita, Tiago Outeiro, Mark J. van Raaij, Paulo Pereira, José Pereira Leal, Anne-Claude Gavin, Paula Sampaio, Elsa Logarinho, Paula Sebastiao.

winetasting_sl-r: Mark J. van Raaij, Paula Sebastiao, Elsa Logarinho - wine tasting!

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The 5th Iberian chapter meeting – the first to be held in Portugal – took place on 2 October at the Institute for Molecular and Cell Biology (IBMC) in Porto. Participants were largely EMBL Portuguese alumni as well as IBMC staff, who gathered to listen to talks on neurodegeneration, kinetochore-microtubule interactions and RNAi-based dissection of innate immune responses.

IBMC Director Claudio Sunkel, who is also the EMBL Council delegate and the EMBC Vice President, opened the meeting with an introduction to the IBMC and to EMBL’s role in European science.

Following EMBL group leader Anne-Claude Gavin’s honorary lecture on biochemical approaches to biomolecular networks, the alumni enjoyed a tour of Porto and a wine-tasting.

The whole event was organised by Paula Sampaio, Head of IBMC's Advanced Light Microscopy Facility, with help from Paula Sebastiao, Assistant Professor at the Escola Superior de Tecnologia do Mar de Peniche.

Paula Sampaio, who is often seen walking through the corridors of the IBMC with a screwdriver, was a visiting scientist in the CBB unit’s Gonzalez Group from 1995 to 2001. While responsible for maintaining the first Leica confocal microscope at EMBL and teaching scientists how to use it, Paula was also running the fledgeling IBMC’s server on her laptop! “EMBL gave me an overview of how a big institute works, and this has been very useful to help to improve IBMC organisation,” she says. “Besides inspiring me to build the microscopy unit at IBMC, it was a great experience scientifically.”

It was her interest in technical equipment – microscopes in particular – which led her to set up the IBMC’s open access Advanced Light Microscopy Facility in 2004, where they now have 100 users a year. Paula is also a Senior Scientist in the lab of IBMC Director Claudio Sunkel. “It has been very important for me to divide my time between services and research”, she says. “I don’t think you can really understand and appreciate the requirements of the facility users, and push forward the need for microscopes, if you’re not doing research”. 

 

 

 

Programme

Time Speaker / Topic
9:30 - 9:40 Welcome
9:40 - 10:20 Kinetochore -microtubule interac tions, mitotic checkpoint and chromosome segregation delity
Elsa logarinho, I nstituto de Biologia Molecular e Celular, Por to, Portugal
10:20 - 11:00 Unraveling the molecular mechanisms of neurodegeneration: from cells to drugs
Tiago Outeiro, Instituto de Medicina Molecular, Faculdade de Medicina de Lisboa, Portugal
11:00 - 11:20 Coffee break
11:20 - 12:00 Towards an evolutionary cell biology
José Pereira Leal, Instituto Gulbenk ian de Ciência, Oeiras, Portugal
12:00 - 13:00 Biochemical approaches to biomolecular networks
Anne Claude Gavin, European Molecular Biology Laboratory, Heidelberg, Germany
13:00 - 14:40 Lunch
14:40 - 15:20  RNAi-based dissection of Innate Immune Responses
Luís Ferreira Moita, I nstitute of Molecular Medicine, Lisbon, Portugal
15:20 - 16:00 Crystallographic structure of a porcine adenovirus bre containing unique galectin-like carbohydrate recognition domains
Mark J. van Raaij, Universidad de Santiago, Santiago de Compostela, Spain
16:00 - 16.20 Coffee break
16:20 Alumni meeting