Conference Summary

This FASEB Science Research Conference (SRC) is the only international meeting that brings together a multi-disciplinary group of clinicians and basic scientists with an interest in calpain proteases. This recurring meeting (every three years) represents the single best opportunity for calpain researchers to synergize their ideas and share unpublished information to catalyze progress in the field. Both the small conference size and sequestered venue greatly facilitate interactions with all participants and allow trainees easy access to established investigators. 

This conference brings together an interdisciplinary group of academic and industry scientists who study and conduct research on the role of calpains in health and disease. Calpains are important in many normal cellular processes and play a prominent role in diseases such as Alzheimer's, muscular dystrophy, eosinophilic esophagitis, cancer, and cardiovascular and retinal disease.

The role of calpain proteases in these diseases is not yet clear. This cross-disciplinary meeting is an essential forum for researchers involved in disease-relevant research to interact with calpain biochemistry experts, enabling new insights on disease mechanisms and therapy development. This conference should be of broad interest to scientists and clinicians interested in calcium dependent processes, both in healthy tissues and in the context of disease.

The main conference themes for this meeting include: 1) Calpains in neuroscience, neurodegeneration, and retinal disease; 2) Function of ubiquitous and tissue specific calpains in skeletal muscle and the cardiovascular system; 3) Role of calpains in inflammation and cancer.

Conference sessions will highlight:

  • Calpain biochemistry, biology, and methodology for studying calpains
  • Calpain 3 and the cardiovascular system and skeletal muscle, including limb girdle muscular dystrophy
  • Calpains and eye disease
  • Calpains and the gastrointestinal tract
  • Calpains in cancer and diabetes
  • Calpains in neuroscience and neurodegenerative disease

The conference will feature a keynote speaker, Dorothy Croall, PhD (University of Maine), who will present a lecture on "Calpain Catalyzed Curiosity: Some History, Pondering, and Challenges." In addition, there will be 11 scientific sessions, a career workshop, a meeting to assess major questions in the field, and a business meeting/awards ceremony. 


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    Funding for this conference was made possible in part by 1 R13 NS111915-01 from the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS) and the National Institute Of Arthritis And Musculoskeletal And Skin Diseases (NIAMS). The views expressed in written conference materials or publications and by speakers and moderators do not necessarily reflect the official policies of the Department of Health and Human Services; nor does mention of trade names, commercial practices, or organizations imply endorsement by the U.S. Government.


    Conference Location

    Asilomar Conference Grounds
    800 Asilomar Avenue
    Pacific Grove, CA 93950 USA

    Conference Organizers

    Melissa Spencer, PhD
    Professor, Neurology, and Director, Neuromuscular Division, Department of Neurology, and Co-director, Center for Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy, University of California, Los Angeles, USA

    Leah Kottyan, PhD
    Assistant Professor, Pediatrics, Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, OH, USA

    Dorothy E. Croall, PhD
    Professor, Biochemistry, University of Maine, USA

    Keynote Speaker

    Dorothy Croall, PhD
    University of Maine
    "Calpain Catalyzed Curiosity: Some History, Pondering, and Challenges"