Prof. Idit Shachar, an expert on inflammation from the Weizmann Institute in Rehovot, Israel, spoke to a group of almost 70 people at VanDusen Botanical Garden on March 25.
Shachar discussed why issues arise in the body when there is a breakdown in the cooperation, communication and mobility of the immune system. Highlights of her presentation included discussion of the dual role of the immune system, and how it is critical for defence against pathogens and critical for body homeostasis. She also spoke of how inflammation is a double-edged sword, as it is both a key weapon in host defence against infections, but also has the potential to cause severe collateral damage in tissues, causing it to be labeled “the silent killer.”
The evening was hosted and sponsored by Drs. Alisa Lipson and Charles Krieger, and the audience was a mix of academics and lay people, resulting in a dynamic question and answer session.
For more information on Shachar’s research or about the Weizmann Canada chapter in Vancouver, contact Kathryn Berkson, [email protected] or 1-877-734-5948.
Dr. Ayelet Erez, a visiting clinician scientist from the Weizmann Institute in Rehovot, Israel, was invited to speak at B.C. Children’s Hospital earlier this month.
The group was comprised of clinicians, researchers and clinical lab scientists. The event was organized by Dr. Hilary Vallance, a Weizmann Vancouver chapter member, who is director of the B.C. Newborn Screening Program and the Biochemical Genetics Lab within the department of pathology at the hospital.
Erez gave a talk on argininosuccinic aciduria (ASA), a rare inherited disorder caused by a lack of the functional gene necessary to make an enzyme called argininosuccinate lyase. Her talk led to a discussion with members of the hospital’s metabolic division in attendance regarding various aspects of her research and how her findings could potentially improve the practice of treating patients with argininosuccinate lyase deficiency here in British Columbia.
For more information on Erez or Weizmann Canada events in Vancouver, contact Jan Goldenberg, [email protected], or call 1-855-337-9611.