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We are delighted to announce Emmanuelle Charpentier (Director MPI-IB, Berlin), Frank Slack (Director Institute for RNA-Medicine, BIDMC Boston, USA) and Maria Carmo-Fonseca (President of the Institute of Molecular Medicine, Lisbon, Portugal) among our speakers.
In the first part of this workshop, directors and leaders of emerging biomedical centers and Biotech-companies will outline the general principles underlying RNA-based technologies, diagnostic and therapeutic areas currently most accessible by this emerging technique. They will also elute to necessary interdisciplinary approaches, ideal infrastructures and organizational outlines, bottlenecks in creating IP/gain access to VC-funding and potential new challenges getting to market with products emerging from the great new world of RNAs.
An interactive panel discussion, gives all participants an opportunity to ask questions, exchange their own experience, challenges dogmas and ideally crystallize optimal setups, best practice frameworks to continue groundbreaking (RNA-) research, while enable rapid transformation of such insights into clinical testing and therapeutic practice. The composition of the panel will reflect on the general aim of our discussion.
RNA -- in its many fascinating forms -- carries out nearly every function in the human body: it encodes functional proteins, assembles protein complexes, modifies other RNAs by its catalytic activity and regulates gene expression at various level. RNA is capable of doing all this by virtue of its complementary base pairing to DNA and RNA, as well as its high specificity in recognizing proteins or small molecules.
Until recently, RNA was considered uncontrollable for therapeutic or clinical opportunities. The discovery of functional RNAs--particularly small interfering-, micro- and circular-RNAs--has revived and accelerated the interest in RNA-based therapeutics. In the US, several biomedical centers dedicated to researching the therapeutic applications of RNA have been opened, while startups and established pharmaceutical companies have already entered into the development of RNA-based products.