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For Immediate Release
Wednesday, Sept. 5, 2012


OU to host international stem cell research conference Oct. 5-7


     Rochester, Mich. – The Oakland University William Beaumont Institute for Stem Cell and Regenerative Medicine will welcome both national and international experts in stem cell research and its biotechnological applications when it hosts the Second Midwest Conference on Stem Cell Biology and Therapy set for Oct. 5-7, 2012.

     Researchers from hospitals, medical organizations, academic institutions and the business community throughout the country will discuss not only the latest advances in this rapidly expanding field of medical science, but the ethical and moral issues that surround it.

     Rasul Chaudhry, an OU faculty member, co-director of the ISCRM and a lead organizer of the conference, has studied embryonic and umbilical cord blood stem cells and multipotent progenitors for more than a decade. He said he is looking forward to sharing the work he, colleagues and students have been zealously pursuing.

     "This conference provides an excellent opportunity to showcase Oakland University being a world-class institution involved in cutting-edge biomedical research," Chaudhry explained. "This is also a chance to show the high-caliber research efforts that are going on at OU and recognize the efforts of our faculty and students."

     Bernard Siegel, executive director of the Genetics Policy Institute (GPI) and founder of the annual World Stem Cell Summit, said, "GPI is proud to partner with ISCRM in this important scientific conference, which will showcase the latest discoveries from top laboratories around the region.

     "We are especially proud that the institute was officially launched at the 2010 World Stem Cell Summit in Detroit. We congratulate Dr. Chaudhry for his visionary leadership in organizing this year's regional conference, which will again put Michigan and the entire Midwest on the stem cell map."

     This year's event will build on the success of the First Midwest Conference on Stem Cell Biology, which Oakland University, Beaumont Health System and Providence Hospital organized in 2008, as well as the 2010 World Stem Cell Summit organized by the University of Michigan, Wayne State University and Michigan State University. Main highlights of this three-day conference include more than 90 expert speakers and panelists presenting their latest research in one keynote forum, three plenary sessions and 16 focus sessions.

     "It is an exciting time for regenerative medicine platforms that aim to integrate stem cell biology, organogenesis and tissue engineering into cell, tissue- and organ-based therapies," said Dr. Gary Hammer, Millie Schembechler Professor of Adrenal Cancer and director of the Endocrine Oncology Program at the University of Michigan Medical School.

     "As the University of Michigan's Center for Organogenesis is composed of over 120 faculty engaged in research in these basic and translational disciplines, we are delighted to support and participate broadly in this conference."

     This year's conference will benefit from expert planning and guidance from nearly a dozen additional academic and health care institutions including:
  • St. John Health System
  • Wayne State University
  • Michigan State University
  • University Research Corridor
  • MichBio
  • Oakland County
  • Georgia Tech
  • The University of Illinois
  • The University of Wisconsin
  • Indiana University
  • Kansas State University
  • Case Western Reserve University
     In addition, a special workshop session will be held for students, medical residents and others.

     Thomas G.H. Diekwisch, professor and head of the Department of Oral Biology at the University of Illinois – Chicago's College of Dentistry, said, "This conference is a splendid marriage between the excitement of cutting edge science and the comfort level of a regional meeting. This meeting will allow students to mingle with top leaders in the field."

     "The conference is becoming a conduit for the dissemination of cutting-edge stem cell research from the Mid-West," added Craig S. Atwood, associate professor of medicine and research director for the Wisconsin Alzheimer's Institute and Wisconsin Comprehensive Memory Program at the University of Wisconsin-Madison's School of Medicine and Public Health.

     The conference is open to the public, and physicians, nurses, physical therapists, occupational therapists and others in health care professions may be able to earn continuing medical education credits by attending.

     Regular registration, which runs through Saturday, Sept. 15, is $350 for the public and $175 for students, residents and post-doctoral students. Registration after Sept. 15 is $400 and $200, respectively. Optional workshops are $100. Sponsorship opportunities are still available.

     For more information on the Second Midwest Conference on Stem Cell Biology and Therapy, visit the website at oakland.edu/scbt.

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Oakland University is a doctoral, research-intensive university located in Oakland County, Michigan. The university has 133 bachelor's degree programs and 128 graduate degree and certificate programs. Dedicated to delivering a distinctive undergraduate experience that is complemented by the strength of its graduate offerings and research accomplishments, Oakland University is organized into the College of Arts and Sciences, the Oakland University William Beaumont School of Medicine and the Schools of Business Administration, Education and Human Services, Engineering and Computer Science, Health Sciences, Nursing and The Honors College. Visit Oakland University on the Web at oakland.edu.