December 2, 2013

Immunology Takes the Spotlight at Inaugural EMBO Workshop in Singapore

First EMBO workshop in Singapore marks new milestone in Singapore-Europe cooperation in life sciences

Singapore, Dec 2, 2013 - (ACN Newswire) - A*STAR's Singapore Immunology Network (SIgN) will host Singapore's inaugural European Molecular Biology Organisation (EMBO) workshop on Complex Systems in Immunology from 2nd to 4th December 2013. The 3-day event will bring together researchers from Europe and Singapore to discuss and share the latest insights in Immunology.

Participants will hear from renowned scientists Professor Michael G Katze, Professor, Department of Microbiology at the University of Washington as well as Systems Biology pioneer Professor Alan Aderem, President of the Seattle Biomedical Research Institute. They will join 15 other speakers from around the world in discussing various topics within the complex field of Immunology. The programme for the workshop is attached as Annex A.

A total of 82 participants, representing 22 countries and 28 nationalities, will take part in the Workshop. The Workshop will provide an excellent opportunity for scientists from Europe and Singapore to exchange ideas and learn from the latest in research.

Professor Paola Castagnoli, Scientific Director of SIgN and Chair of the 2013 EMBO Workshop on Complex Systems in Immunology said, "The immune system is the most complex system in the human body. Understanding this complexity is crucial to modulate immune responses which are involved in most human diseases. In recent years, we have seen the emergence of "Systems Biology" and this workshop aims to bring together specialists from different fields to address the complexity of the immune system. We hope that this EMBO workshop will catalyse new ideas on how best to address complex systems by drawing knowledge across disciplines."

Said A*STAR Chairman, Mr Lim Chuan Poh, "This excellence and diversity in scientific and cultural backgrounds will catalyse an exciting exchange of scientific ideas, enhance the richness of the discussions, that I hope, will result in meaningful collaborations amongst the researchers present here."

Singapore's partnership with EMBO was formalised in October 2011, when the Singapore Government signed a 3-year cooperation agreement with EMBO and its intergovernmental funding body, the European Molecular Biology Conference. The agreement brings together the key players in Singapore's biomedical research landscape, namely, A*STAR, Nanyang Technological University (NTU) and National University of Singapore (NUS). As part of the agreement, Singapore-based scientists can participate in EMBO training programmes and activities like the EMBO Workshop.

Please see the full press release, with Annexes, at

About the Singapore Immunology Network (SIgN)

The Singapore Immunology Network (SIgN), officially inaugurated on 15 January 2008, is a research consortium under the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR)'s Biomedical Research Council. The mandate of SIgN is to advance human immunology research and participate in international efforts to combat major health problems. Since its launch, SIgN has grown rapidly and currently includes 250 scientists from 26 different countries around the world working under 28 renowned principal investigators. At SIgN, researchers investigate immunity during infection and various inflammatory conditions including cancer and are supported by cutting edge technological research platforms and core services.

Through this, SIgN aims to build a strong platform in basic human immunology research for better translation of research findings into clinical applications. SIgN also sets out to establish productive links with local and international institutions, and encourage the exchange of ideas and expertise between academic, industrial and clinical partners and thus contribute to a vibrant research environment in Singapore. For more information about SIgN, please visit

About the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR)

The Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR) is Singapore's lead public sector agency that fosters world-class scientific research and talent to drive economic growth and transform Singapore into a vibrant knowledge-based and innovation driven economy. In line with its mission-oriented mandate, A*STAR spearheads research and development in fields that are essential to growing Singapore's manufacturing sector and catalysing new growth industries. A*STAR supports these economic clusters by providing intellectual, human and industrial capital to its partners in industry. A*STAR oversees 20 biomedical sciences and physical sciences and engineering research entities, located in Biopolis and Fusionopolis as well as their vicinity. These two R&D hubs, house a bustling and diverse community of local and international research scientists and engineers from A*STAR's research entities as well as a growing number of corporate laboratories. For more information about A*STAR, please visit

About EMBO

EMBO is an organization of almost 1600 leading researchers that promotes excellence in the life sciences. The major goals of the organization are to support talented researchers at all stages of their careers, stimulate the exchange of scientific information, and help build a European research environment where scientists can achieve their best work.

EMBO helps young scientists to advance their research, promote their international reputations and ensure their mobility. Courses, workshops, conferences and scientific journals disseminate the latest research and offer training in techniques to maintain high standards of excellence in research practice. EMBO helps to shape science and research policy by seeking input and feedback from our community and by following closely the trends in science in Europe. For more information on EMBO, please visit

Petrina Ho (Ms)
Senior Officer, Corporate Communications
Agency for Science, Technology and Research
Tel: +65 6826 6258
Email: [email protected]

Source: A*STAR

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