ESCCA and ICyS 2011

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From 13-17 September 2011, the European Society for Clinical Cell Analysis (ESCCA) and the Irish Society for Cytometry (ICyS) will organize three meetings over 5 days in wonderful Dublin. The International Society for Advancement of Cytometry (ISAC) and the International Society for Clinical Cytometry (ICCS) will contribute toward one of these: the Joint Meeting of ISAC-ICCS-ICyS-ESCCA. The 3 meetings are of major importance for education and scientific exchange in the fields of basic, translational and clinical applications in cytometry. They offer a unique opportunity to learn, to share information and scientific experience, to seek collaborations and to network - in short, to be involved and to meet old and new friends.

SIC Meeting

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On behalf of the Iberian Society of Cytometry (SIC), we cordially invite you to participate in the XIIth SIC Congress, to be held in Bilbao, Spain, on 12-14 May 2011. Participants will experience a number of first class lectures, defined by the scientific board under supervision of the SIC, providing a unique opportunity to establish direct links between scientists and professionals involved in flow cytometric cell analysis.

XMRV Workshop


A new XMRV Workshop has taken place in Vall Hebron Hospital in Barcelona. We have had five lectures, all of them full of the history of all the papers that have been published since Dr. Judy Mikovits’s paper came out in September 2009. But each speaker has also given a summary of what are they working on.

Dr. José Alegre opened the session and was the first to speak. He is one of the most well known specialists in CFS, and as soon as the Science paper was published, he immediately tried to involve a group of Biologists from his Hospital in this research.

Then, Dr. Cecilia Cabrera from IrsiCaixa talked for an hour. She mentioned the great importance of Dr. Ila Singh’s study with animals, and all they have learned about XMRV. Then she said that they have tested 11 patients and done 4 controls, that they have identified sequences of XMRV (not polytrophic virus) in B cells of CFS patients and controls, and that they are developing models of infection in human tissues in vitro, and in this way was able to study the viral pathogenity.

Dr. José Montoya of Stanford University was next. He started explaining that six years ago he met his first CFS patient, and since then he has visited more than 450. He is sure that you can develop CFS after a viral infection, and he believes that 11 % of patients that suffer EBV, Q fever, Ross River virus, etc, can end up with a CFS. About Dr. Judy Mikovit’s paper he remarked that since it was published everybody is turning to CFS with the intention to find out all they can because they have completely changed their opinion.

In a random, double-blind, placebo-controlled study they have found that there was a clinical improvement in patients who were taking valganciclovir for a period of more than six months, compared with placebo. CFS patients met Foukuda’s international criteria and had high antibody data against HHV-6 and EBV. Several immunological markers changed significantly in the treated patients that were not seen in patients taking placebo. This study will be submitted for publication this month, and provides evidence that CFS is a real illness that can be caused by an infectious agent that can be treated with prolonged antiviral intervention. They are also working on the hypothesis that besides the antiviral mechanism there could also be an immonumodulator component in the good results.

And the last to talk was Dr. Jordi Petriz, of the Vall Hebron Hospital. He told us that the aim of his research with Dr. Alegre has to do with the development of functional tests that help to find a better classification of subtypes of CFS. They will use cytometric techniques (a very sophisticated technology) on the whole blood of people with CFS infected with XMRV, and compare the results with appropriate controls, in the hope of finding a pattern and goal differential characteristic of CFS. These techniques will also permit the analysis of the lymphocytes in the study of CFS patient’s immune system. He has also widely described the study that is focused on neutrophil oxidative metabolism and how this may affect their function.

In conclusion, all of them have mentioned the importance of an animal model to study the pathogenesis of XMRV. It’s also very important to have accepted tools to work with, and this means the urgent need of a universal kit. They are all working in the same direction, they are sharing lots of data, samples, etc, and they all agreed with the great complicity between the different groups, which they had not observed so far, for the other diseases they have worked on. Good long term perspectives.



From 22-25 September the "Tenth Euroconference on Clinical Cell Analysis" has been held at the Hotel Las Arenas in Valencia, Spain. This meeting was organized by the ESCCA in cooperation with the Sociedad Iberica de Citometria. It's been a real pleasure and an overall fantastic experience organizing this Tenth Euroconference on Clinical Cell Analysis. The organization went smoothly, and the combination of lodging and workshop presentation in The Hotel Las Arenas has been a good choice. My personal feeling is that this conference has provided an outstanding opportunity for clinic professionals to share their experiences, discuss the latest topics and an exceptional attempt to close clinics and basic research. The number of participants was very large but unfortunately it was limited by the accommodation space available. They came for many countries and most of them have a clinic background working at hospitals and research institutes, but also for the industry. Now, I would like to thank the many people who offered a myriad of unique assistance with this Euroconference on Clinical Cell Analysis. In addition I would like to thank Valencia Autonomous Government and sponsors, partners and collaborators of the convention. And most especially, I would like to thank the rest of the organizing and scientific committee for the totally smooth cooperation and the quality of their work.
Hope to see you in Dublin!

Jordi Petriz (President of the SIC)

PUCL Director summits Mt. Everest! (and lives)

Dr. Robinson decided to climb the world's tallest mountain, to raise awareness of the devastating problems of AIDS in resource-limited countries, with the goal of raising money for Purdue's nonprofit Cytometry for Life program. The Cytometry for Life program is developing low-cost diagnostic equipment to help HIV/AIDS victims in rural Africa receive treatments.

Everest - 2009 - Greeting to Cytometry community from JPR on Vimeo.

European Cytometry Network

A network to establish communication, cooperation, education and promotion of Cytometric science and techniques among its members. The European Cytometry Network (ECN) has been created with the aim to organise cytometrists from all over Europe around a system that provides modern infrastructure to build up connections between professionals in Cytometry.

This network is by invitation only. If you have an invitation, click the link in the email to join. Otherwise, you can always contact Network creators to receive an invitation: andy.riddell@embl.de or alexis.gonzalez@embl.de