- This event has passed.
II International Symposium on Photopharmacology (ISPP2018)
Thursday, November 1, 2018 @ 8:00 am–Friday, November 2, 2018 @ 5:00 pm
II International Symposium on Photopharmacology (ISPP2018) – Innovative therapeutics using light
The world’s leading researchers and experts in the field will meet at the second international photopharmacology symposium in Vic on 1 and 2 November.
The convention is being organised jointly by the University of Vic – Central University of Catalonia (UVic-UCC), the Bioengineering Institute of Catalonia (IBEC) and the Institute for Advanced Chemistry of Catalonia – Spanish National Research Council (IQAC-CSIC). More than 120 people, the vast majority of whom come from countries other than Spain, will be attending the event, which will take place in the Torre dels Frares building at the UVic.
The symposium will include around twenty lectures, three blocks of short presentations and two poster sessions. The speakers include Ben Feringa, of the University of Groningen (Netherlands), who was awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 2016 for the design and synthesis of molecular machines – an award he shared with Jean-Pierre Sauvage and Fraser Stoddart. Among others, the scheduled lectures include those by Edith C. Glazer of the University of Kentucky, who is working on the development of complex metals such as possible photoactive drugs, and by Austria’s Dirk Trauner of the University of New York, focusing on the application of photopharmacology in neurobiology. One of the main achievements of his team, working with Richard Kramer and Ehud Isacoff, has been to restore sight in blind animals, using drugs that respond to visible light as molecular prostheses.
What is photopharmacology?
Photopharmacology is based on administering photosensitive compounds as drugs, which are only activated and take effect in combination with light. This specific characteristic provides a high level of control over the administration of medications and therapies, since it means that the specific point of the body where it is applied and the duration of the application can be decided. This precision and location means that as a technique, photopharmacological treatments are not invasive, and can achieve optimum results with minimal secondary effects.
Although its history dates back to the 1960s, photopharmacology has primarily developed over the last ten years. During this period, a significant critical mass of researchers has been created in research centres and universities around the world that focus on the field from various perspectives. It is a multifaceted science, which includes biology, pharmacology, physics, chemistry, engineering and medicine. Its applications are also extremely wide-ranging: it may be therapeutically useful in a wide variety of medical fields, within which neurosciences and cardiology are particularly important. Some applications that are being studied could also provide substantial improvements in pathologies such as diabetes and chronic pain. Photopharmacology can also be used as a research tool, and can be combined with other technologies, such as materials nanotechnology.