September 2-7, 2011, Spetses, Greece


This FEBS Lecture Course is the 3rd in series following the previous successful Advanced Lecture Courses on Matrix Pathobiology, Signaling and Molecular Targets known as FEBS-MPST www.chemistry.upatras.gr/febs-mpst2007 and www.febs-mpst2009.upatras.gr organized in May 2007 and July 2009, respectively.

Matrix-mediated regulation of the various cell functions has been demonstrated during the last decade from the structural biochemical and molecular cell biology studies in various in vitro and in vivo models. It is well known that mutations and structural alterations of matrix molecules are closely related to the development of common diseases, such as cardiovascular disease, cancer including metastasis, and diseases affecting the musculoskeletal system as well as more rare conditions.

The topics will cover key areas in the maintenance of normal tissue homeostasis and alterations in disease, signaling elicited by interactions of cell surface receptors with matrix components and growth factors and rapid and sensitive structure analysis methods. In order to understand disease initiation and development, it is of great importance to address issues related with matrix organization and assembly, cell adhesion, matrix-mediated signaling, as well as the biomacromolecules, namely integrins, proteoglycans and glycans, novel collagen types, growth factors and metalloproteinases and other matrix degrading enzymes that affect the cell behavior.

The proposed FEBS Lecture Course entitled “Matrix Pathobiology, Signaling and Molecular Targets 2011”, further to topics covered in (FEBS-MPST-2007 and 2009) will cover topics related  to ongoing development in the field of integrins, cell membrane and secreted proteoglycans as well as shed proteoglycans, modulation of receptor activation and signaling by matrix effectors, novel collagen types, and other emerging concept including enzymes implicated in disease development and progression, matrix-mediated epithelial to mesenchymal transition (EMT), glycomics and domain mapping of interactions with matrix effectors and their importance for disease treatment and diagnosis. Key areas of cancer stem cell biology and biomarkers, and pharmacological targeting in malignancies are also included.

This FEBS course will provide important new knowledge to participants in the form of:

1. Understanding the importance of the main matrix macromolecules (metalloproteinases, proteoglycans, glycosaminoglycans, integrins) their structure-function relationship as well as their therapeutical importance, mainly from the general lectures (tutorials) to be held.

2. The tissue organization and the structure specific functions mediated by matrix macromolecules in physiological and pathological situations.

3. New insights on how matrix macromolecules participate and affect cell signaling and behaviour as well as how these molecules may contribute to disease development and progress.

3. Participants will further become familiar with methodological challenges used for expression and determination of various macromolecules with biopharmaceutical importance.

An important goal of this course is to bring together scientists from biochemistry, life sciences and molecular cell biology on an important and rapidly developing scientific field. The benefits of the course will provide participants with a new understanding of new technology for unravelling molecular structure and function as well as how this can be used to study alterations in tissue in disease. The participants will gain information that can be applied in their academic environment and research institutes. For such a purpose apart from invited lectures, tutorial, selected talks from young fellows, poster sessions, panel discussions and speaker corners will be organized.

Many leading experts will participate as lecturers/tutors and we are confident that FEBS-MPST2009 will be an outstanding lecture course with an exquisite scientific program.