Pancreatic Diseases conference unites researchers across disciplines
Jackie Maupin Feb 27, 2023
Because the world of science is incredibly vast, researchers often gather with like-minded peers in niche settings to discuss discoveries and advances in their specialized fields. But thanks to events like the Pancreatic Diseases Gordon Research Conference (GRC), scientists have the opportunity to engage with experts from all aspects of pancreas biology along with clinicians working on translational approaches for pancreatic diseases like diabetes and cancer.
This spring, researchers from Indiana University will travel to Italy to attend the Pancreatic Diseases GRC along with 200 other scientists from around the world who are interested in understanding pancreatic cell behavior and communication across disciplines. The conference brings together research about the pancreas’s two main glands, exocrine and endocrine, and their different functions.
Carmella Evans-Molina, PhD, MS, MD, director of the Center for Diabetes and Metabolic Diseases (CDMD) at Indiana University School of Medicine, serves as vice chair for this year’s Pancreatic Diseases GRC and will be joined by Teresa Mastracci, PhD, assistant professor of biology at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis, and Amelia Linnemann, PhD, associate professor of pediatrics at the Herman B Wells Center for Pediatric Research.
Mastracci will present her findings on exocrine-endocrine communication in development and disease during the “Cross Talk Between Exocrine Disease and Endocrine Dysregulation” session at the conference. “This concept that cells of the exocrine and endocrine pancreas directly influence each other has recently become a “hot topic” in the pancreas disease field. A meeting sponsored by the NIH in June 2022 was really the first acknowledgment that we need to become more thoughtful about integrating our current knowledge of normal pancreas physiology with that of both exocrine and endocrine disease mechanisms. I'm excited that the GRC is also prioritizing this work. Bringing researchers together who study both exocrine and endocrine disease can only result in engaging discussion and fruitful collaborations to help understand the complicated cellular interplay in the pancreas.”
Linnemann will lead a session titled, “Inter-Organ Communication.” "I’m looking forward to attending the conference and engaging in thoughtful discussions with colleagues whom I may not otherwise have a chance to connect with,” said Linnemann. “My research is focused primarily on the pancreatic islet, so I’m confident I’ll return to my lab in Indianapolis with new knowledge about the entire pancreas.”
The upcoming Pancreatic Diseases GRC will be held from April 30 to May 5, 2023, in Italy’s Tuscany region—purposely secluded to enhance a sense of camaraderie among attendees and foster meaningful connections. Applications for the meeting must be submitted by April 2, 2023, and early registration is encouraged, as attendee space is limited.
Investigators and students who are interested in learning more about GRC and the Pancreatic Diseases Conference can visit grc.org/pancreatic-diseases-conference/2023/.