8th Transgenic Animal Research Conference: new strategies applied to livestock transgenesis

James D Murray, Organizer of the 8th UC Davis Transgenic Animal Conference
James D Murray, Organizer of the 8th UC Davis Transgenic Animal Conference

James D Murray (Department of Animal Science, UC Davis, and ISTT member) must be praised once again for having organized another successful edition (8th) of the highly interesting and stimulating Transgenic Animal Research Conference in Tahoe, a spectacular and most scenic high-mountain area in Northern California. Over 100 scientists, PhD students, biotechnologists and members of regulatory agencies have discussed, during three and a half days (August 7-11), the most recent advances in the generation, use and applications derived from geneticall modified animals, with a focus in non-rodent large animal models. The International Society for Transgenic Technologies (ISTT) is proud to have co-sponsored this conference, highly relevant for those working with transgenic pigs, sheep, cows, goats, chicken and fish, among other species. Several ISTT members have participated in this meeting, as invited speakers, session chairs or delegates. The abstracts of this meeting as well as a scientific report will be published in Transgenic Research, the scientific journal associated with the ISTT, freely available online to all ISTT Members.

ISTT supporting the 8th Transgenic Animal Research Conference
ISTT supporting the 8th Transgenic Animal Research Conference

EFSA launches public consultation on draft guidance for the risk assessment of food and feed derived from GM animals and related animal health and welfare aspects

European Food Safety Authority
European Food Safety Authority

In its guidance document, the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) outlines specific data requirements and the methodology to be followed for risk assessment should applications for food and feed derived from GM animals be submitted for market authorisation in the European Union (EU). The risk assessment approach compares GM animals and derived food and feed with their respective conventional counterparts integrating both food and feed safety as well as animal health and welfare aspects. All stakeholders and interested parties are invited to provide their comments through an online public consultation that runs until 30 September 2011.

1st ISTT Young Investigator Award goes to Xiao-Yang Zhao

Prof. Xiao-Yang Zhao, 1st ISTT Young Investigator Award - 2011
Prof. Xiao-Yang Zhao, 1st ISTT Young Investigator Award - 2011

The International Society for Trangenic Technologies (ISTT) is pleased to announce the first ISTT Young Investigator Award, generously sponsored by inGenious Targeting Laboratory. From the four excellent candidates nominated by ISTT Members, the Award Committee chose Prof. Xiao-Yang Zhao, from the State Key Lab of Reproductive Biology (SKLRB), Institute of Zoology (IOZ), Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS), Beijing, PR China, [nominated by Prof. Qi Zhou (ISTT Prize award 2004)]. The Award Committee felt his research was exciting and has great potential to impact the field of animal transgenesis, through his impressive work and publications on induced-pluripotent stem cells (iPS).

Dr. Xiao-Yang Zhao developed a system to generate induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells that showed 100 fold improvement in efficiency over the control method. iPS cells show great promise in applications to develop regenerative medicine applications and generation of experimental animal models. Dr. Zhao’s breakthrough research proved that iPS cells could be used to generate viable mice by tetraploid complementation. This demonstration of complete iPS cell pluripotency was published in Nature in 2009 and received much attention from stem cell biologists and the popular media. Time Magazine named this research as the fifth most important medical breakthrough 2009 in a list of the top ten medical advances.

Dr. Xiao-Yang Zhao was born in 1980, in Southwest China. He received his PhD degree in Developmental Biology from Institute of Zoology, Chinese Academic of Sciences in 2010. After that, he was recommended and awarded to be the Young Principal of Investigator of IOZ, CAS. Dr. Xiao-Yang Zhao and colleagues found that some iPS cells failed to generate iPS mice by tetraploid complementation. However, when their nuclei were transferred to enucleated oocytes, cloned animals could be generated. This combination of using iPS cells from transgenic animals and nuclear transfer technologies will accelerate studies of transgenesis in non-rodent animals, specifically in agriculturally important species.

Award committee:

Dr. Thom Saunders, Univ. Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI, USA, Vice-President of ISTT, Chair
Prof. Francis Stewart, Biotechnologisches Zentrum, TU Dresden, Germany, ISTT Prize award 2010
Prof. Brigid Hogan, Duke University, Durham, NC, USA, ISTT Prize award 2008
Dr. Lisa Aronov, inGenious Targeting Laboratory, ISTT Young Investigator Award Sponsor

Dr. Xiao-Yang Zhao will attend the 10th Transgenic Technology (TT2011) meeting where he will deliver a short talk summarizing his scientific achievements that led him to receive this 1st ISTT Young Investigator Award, sponsored by inGenious Targeting Laboratory.

ISTT Young Investigator Award
ISTT Young Investigator Award

8th UC Davis Transgenic Animal Research Conference

Emerald Bay and Lake Tahoe, CA, USA
Emerald Bay and Lake Tahoe, CA, USA

Once again, and correspondig this year to its 8th edition, the biennial UC Davis Transgenic Animal Research Conference, organized by Prof. James Murray, UC Davis and ISTT Member, will be held at the beautiful location of Lake Tahoe, in Northern California, starting next Sunday, August 7, until August 10. Once again, the International Society for Transgenic Technologies (ISTT) is pleased to co-sponsor and promote this event.

This will be the eight international meeting hosted by UC Davis to bring together representatives from the leading laboratories worldwide doing cutting edge work on transgenic research in non-murine animals, including livestock, fish and poultry species. The upcoming conference will again focus on state-of-the-art science in the field of transgenic research. Presentations will address cutting-edge methodology, technical improvements, and current progress towards producing transgenic animals for biomedical and agricultural applications. The intent of these conferences is to bring together scientists to discuss progress, problems, and potential application of transgenic technology for animal applications.

The list of accepted speakers and topics include:

  • Goetz Laible, New Zealand, Opening talk
  • Daniel Salamone, Argentina, methods to increase efficiency of transgenesis
  • Scott Fahrenkrug, Minnesota, USA, transposon for making GE pigs
  • Lluis Montoliu, Spain, Boundary elements
  • Mark Tizard, Australia, miRNA tgs to mature immunity in chick embryos
  • Michael Roberts (Bhanu Telugu) Missouri, USA, reprogramming msenchymal stem cells
  • Elizabeth Maga, Davis, USA, In vivo bacteriacidal effects of lysozyme milk
  • Mike McGrew, Roslin, UK, germline transmission of TG chickens from PGCs
  • Rob Etches, Crystal Biosciences, interspecies use of PGC cells in birds
  • Jacob Bentzon, Denmark, hypercholesterolemic minipigs
  • Bj√∂rn Petersen, Germany, ZFN pigs
  • Zsuzsanna Bosze, Hungary, transgenic rabbit systems
  • Cesare Galli, Italy, European xenotransplantation pig project
  • Charlotte Sorenson, Denmark, HR in nuclear donor cells for SCNT cloning in pigs
  • Darek Moreau, Canada, GXE interaction of GH Atlantic Salmon
  • Kevin Wells, Missouri, USA, targeting-dependent selection
  • Mingjun Lui, China, Lentivirus vectors in sheep
  • Xavier Lauth, AquaBounty, USA, GE sterile fish
  • Roland Buelow, OMT, USA, antibodies from TG rats
  • David Stolz, Iowa, USA, cystic fibrosis pigs
  • Eddie Sullivan, Hematech, USA, Increasing Transgenic Protein production when using transgenic animals as bioreactors
  • Helen Sang, Roslin, UK, Flu resistant chickens
  • Ron Stotish, AquaBounty, USA, Science for regulatory approval
  • Li Ning, China, shRNA resistance to foot and mouth in pigs
  • Heiner Niemann, Germany, Closing Talk

TT2011 meeting: Early Bird Registration extended until September 15th

TT2011 meeting: Early Bird Registration extended until September 15th
TT2011 meeting: Early Bird Registration extended until September 15th

At the International Society for Transgenic Technologies (ISTT), we have decided to extend the Early Bird Registration to attend the forthcoming 10th Transgenic Technology (TT2011) meeting. Early Bird Registration at reduced fees will be possible until September 15th. Thereafter, ISTT members will continue benefitting for a reduced fee until October 9, whereas standard fee will apply for non-ISTT members. This is a great opportunity to register for this unique meeting, happening only once every 18 months, and also to become a member of the ISTT. Don’t miss the TT2011 meeting!. Looking forward to seeing you in Florida!