Although Covid-19 restrictions continue to disrupt travel, international collaboration continued last week as faculty from LKCMedicine’s Programmes in Vascular/Metabolic Diseases and Developmental Biology and Regenerative Medicine met with their counterparts at the London Institute of Medical Sciences (LMS), a partnership between Imperial College London and the UK MRC, for a virtual ‘Innovation Mixer’.
The meeting was opened by the Dean of Imperial’s Faculty of Medicine, Professor Jonathan Weber, and former Dean of LKCMedicine, Professor James Best.
The workshop was broken down into two sections. The first focused on stem cells and regenerative disease, with LKCMedicine group heads Nanyang Assistant Professor Xia Yun, Associate Professor Ray Dunn and Assistant Professor Christine Cheung presenting their work together with Professor Irene Miguel-Aliaga, Dr Michelle Percharde, and Dr Harry Leitch from the LMS, who discussed topics ranging from sex differences in the gut and transposons to germline development. The second half of the session delved into the topic of metabolism and disease, with LKCMedicine’s Assistant Professor Christine Wong, Associate Professor of Metabolic Disease Yusuf Ali and Professor Wang Yulan contributing alongside LMS group heads Dr Louise Fets, Dr Peter Sarkies, and Professor Jesús Gil, who discussed tumour metabolism, epigenetic evolution and ageing.
Speaking at the end of the session, LMS Director Professor Dame Amanda Fisher FRS, and LKCMedicine’s Toh Kian Chui Distinguished Professor Philip Ingham FRS, encouraged attendees to use the virtual networking at the end of the event to seed future collaborations.
Imperial College’s Vice Dean for International Affairs, Professor Des Johnston, brought the event to a close, remarking in particular on the youthful dynamism of all the presenters.
Co-organiser for the LKCMedicine-LMS workshop Dr Santiago Vernia, LMS said, “This workshop has highlighted the scientific synergies between groups at the LMS and at LKCMedicine, and has established a framework for potential future collaborations.”
Co-organiser Prof Ingham, LKCMedicine said, “I am delighted that we have finally introduced investigators from our medical school to the LMS and all it has to offer as a leading international centre for Medical Sciences. I look forward to seeing fruitful collaborations emerging from this very enjoyable and stimulating event.”
It is hoped that this event will stimulate further interaction between LKCMedicine and Imperial College London, in particular through the opportunities for collaboration afforded by the Dean’s Postdoctoral Fellowship Programme and LKCMedicine PhD programme with its option for students to spend 12-18 months at Imperial College London.