World’s Leading Experts Gathering for International Sickle Cell Conference

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by Ana Belo |

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International Sickle Cell Conference

The American Physiological Society (APS) will host the Physiological and Pathophysiological Consequences of Sickle Cell Disease conference Nov. 6-8 in Washington, D.C. The world’s leading experts in the field of sickle cell disease (SCD) will present the latest research on SCD with the aim of understanding the disease and its ramifications for the prevention and improvement of treatment strategies.

SCD affects millions of people worldwide. The cause of the disease is an inherited flaw (mutation) in the DNA that forms an abnormal protein, called hemoglobin. Hemoglobin is part of the red blood cells and is responsible for the transport of oxygen throughout the body. Almost all organs are affected by SCD, however, the effects of the disease are still not fully understood.

The upcoming conference will focus on the understanding of how the processes happen in the body. This basic knowledge can speed up new approaches to treatments to counteract the consequences of SCD. Furthermore, the conference aims to spread the knowledge on new clinical research findings in the field and to brainstorm new ideas and directions for future research in SCD.

“Currently, there is only one [U.S. Food and Drug Administration] FDA-approved treatment for the disease,” Dexter L. Lee, PhD, of Howard University in Washington, D.C. and conference chair, said in a press release. “Researchers across the country and around the globe are making progress in our understanding of the disease and the discovery of new therapies to serve the SCD community.”

The venue will be held at the Embassy Suites DC Convention Center in Washington, D.C., where internationally recognized, interdisciplinary investigators are invited to give oral presentations and present research posters on their most recent findings.

The conference will cover a vast repertoire of studies on new potential therapies, including causes of/ and treatment for pain, clotting and inflammation, and cell and gene therapy and translational research. Translational research is the type of medical and biological research in the laboratory that aims to “translate” findings into more clinical relevant knowledge, from laboratory to patient. The full program is available here

The APS is a nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting education, scientific research, and distribution of knowledge in the physiological sciences. Physiology is the study of how the body functions under normal conditions and in disease (pathophysiology).