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Journal of Cell Biology Meeting, Cell Biology of Disease

Journal of Cell Biology Meeting, Cell Biology of Disease

Wednesday, September 23, 2009 - Friday, September 25, 2009

The New York Academy of Sciences

Presented By

Presented by the New York Academy of Sciences and the Journal of Cell Biology


This 2.5-day conference will address recent advances in our understanding of disease pathology at the cellular and molecular level, with a focus on cancer. Presenters will discuss diseases caused by chromosomal abnormalities, DNA repair mechanism defects, and other nuclear irregularities. The meeting will also highlight progress in stem cell research with a focus on its application to cancer and diseases. The symposium will focus on basic science, but will provide some integration with subsequent clinical applications so that bench researchers and clinicians can develop a mutual understanding of the potential for translation of basic research into effective therapeutics.

Presented by:

For a complete list of sponsors, please click the Sponsorship tab.


*Presentation times are subject to change.

Day 1: Wednesday, September 23, 2009

4:00 PM

Registration and Poster Session Set-Up

5:00 PM

Opening Remarks
Kathy Granger, PhD, The New York Academy of Sciences
Emma Hill, PhD, The Journal of Cell Biology, Rockefeller Press University
Tom Misteli, PhD, The Journal of Cell Biology, Rockefeller Press University

Keynote Lectures

5:15 PM

New Dimensions in Cell Migration and Matrix Interactions
Kenneth Yamada, MD, PhD, National Institutes of Health

6:00 PM

Rho GTPase Signaling in Migration and Morphogenesis
Alan Hall, PhD, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center

6:45 PM

Reception and Poster Viewing

Day 2: Thursday, September 24, 2009

8:00 AM


Session I: Stem Cells

Chair: Elaine Fuchs, PhD, Rockefeller University
Co-Chair: Haifan Lin, PhD, Yale University School of Medicine

9:00 AM

Stem Cells in the Skin: The Privileged Few
Elaine Fuchs, PhD, Rockefeller University

9:45 AM

Epigenomics and Cellular States
Alexander Meissner, PhD, Harvard University

10:15 AM

Coffee Break

10:45 AM

Stem Cells and their Niche in the Adult Mammalian Brain
Fiona Doetsch, PhD, Columbia University

11:15 AM

Evolutionary Conserved Aging and in Rejuvenation of Organ Stem Cells Between Mice and Humans
Irina Conboy, PhD, The Berkeley Stem Cell Center

11:45 AM

Chromatin Regulation in Drosophila Stem Cells and Their Daughters
Michael Buszczak, PhD, The University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas

12:15 PM

Lunch and Poster Session

Session II: Chromosomes

Chair: Rebecca Heald, PhD, University of California, Berkeley

2:00 PM

Using Xenopus Egg Extracts to Investigate Mitotic Chromosome Dynamics and Mechanisms of Intracellular Scaling
Rebecca Heald, PhD, University of California, Berkeley

2:45 PM

Generating a Dynamic Kinetochore-Microtubule Interface
Iain Cheeseman, PhD, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

3:15 PM

Coffee Break

3:45 PM

Examining Cell Division Mechanisms Using Chemical Biology Approaches
Tarun Kapoor, PhD, Rockefeller University

4:15 PM

Polyploidy, Aneuploidy & Genome Stability
David Pellman, MD, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute

4:45 PM

DNA Repair and Transcription in Living Tissue
Wim Vermeulen, PhD, Erasmus Medical Center

5:15 PM

Conclusion of Day 2

Day 3: Friday, September 25, 2009

8:00 AM


Session III: Cancer

Chair: Ira Mellman, PhD, Genentech, Inc.

9:00 AM

Cell Biology and Cancer, In Translation
Ira Mellman, PhD, Genentech, Inc.

9:45 AM

The Cell Biology of PTEN/AKT Regulation in Cancer
Lloyd Trotman, PhD, Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory

10:15 AM

Coffee Break

10:45 AM

Role of Shelterin in Cancer and Aging
Maria Blasco, PhD, Spanish National Cancer Center (CNIO)

11:15 AM

Cell Polarity Pathways as Regulators or Morphogenesis and Tumorigenesis
Senthil Muthuswamy, PhD, Ontario Cancer Institute

11:45 AM

Invadopodia, Specialized Cell Structures for Cancer Invasion
Alissa Weaver, MD, PhD, Vanderbilt University Medical Center

12:15 PM

Lunch and Poster Viewing

12:30 PM

Career Session (Break-out room)
Aimee deCathelineau, PhD, The Journal of Cell Biology
Shawn Galdeen, PhD, Rockefeller University
Kathy Granger, PhD, The New York Academy of Sciences
Alison North, PhD, Rockefeller University
Nidhi Sabharwal, PhD, Rockefeller University
Ben Short, PhD, The Journal of Cell Biology

Closing Keynotes

2:00 PM

Guarding the Genome: Centromeres, Aneuploidy, and Tumorigenesis
Don Cleveland, PhD, University of California San Diego

2:45 PM

Small RNA Mediated Epigenetic Mechanism in Stem Cell Self-Renewal
Haifan Lin, PhD, Yale University School of Medicine

3:30 PM

Deconstructing Metastasis
Joan Massagué, PhD, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center

4:15 PM

Closing Remarks
Tom Misteli, PhD, The Journal of Cell Biology, Rockefeller Press University

4:30 PM

Conclusion of Conference
Breakdown of Posters


Rebecca Heald, PhD

University of California, Berkeley

Emma Hill, PhD

The Journal of Cell Biology, Rockefeller University Press

Tom Misteli, PhD

The Journal of Cell Biology, Rockefeller University Press

Kathy Granger, PhD

The New York Academy of Sciences

Keynote Speakers

Don W. Cleveland, PhD

Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research

Elaine Fuchs, PhD

Rockefeller University

Alan Hall, PhD

Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center

Haifan Lin, PhD

Yale University

Joan Massague, PhD

Memorial Sloan-Ketting Cancer Center

Ira Mellman, PhD

Genentech, Inc.

Kenneth Yamada, MD, PhD

National Institutes of Health


Maria A.Blasco, PhD

Spanish National Cancer Center (CNIO)

Michael Buszczak, PhD

University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center

Iain Cheeseman, PhD

Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Irina Conboy, PhD

University of California, Berkley

Fiona Doetsch, PhD

Columbia University

Tarun Kapoor, PhD

Rockefeller University

Alexander Meissner, PhD

Harvard University

Senthil Muthuswamy, PhD

Ontario Cancer Institute

David S. Pellman, MD

Dana Farber Cancer Institute

Lloyd Christopher Trotman, PhD

Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory

Wim Vermeulen, PhD

Erasmus MB

Alissa Weaver, MD, PhD

Vanderbilt University Medical Center


For sponsorship opportunities please contact Sonya Dougal at or 212.298.8682.

Presented by

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Academy Friends

  • Genentech, Inc.
  • Hamamatsu Corporation
  • Hoffmann-La Roche
  • Promega Corporation
  • Sutter Instrument Company

The project described is supported by Award Number R13CA141983 from the National Cancer Institute. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the National Cancer Institute or the National Institutes of Health.

Media Partners


Day 1: Wednesday, September 23

Keynote Lectures

New Dimensions in Cell Migration and Matrix Interactions

Kenneth M Yamada, MD, PhD1, Andrew D Doyle, PhD1, Tomohiro Onodera, MD, PhD1, Takayoshi Sakai, DDS, PhD1,2, Jeff Chi-feng Hsu, PhD1 , Vira V Artym, PhD1,3 , and Kazue Matsumoto1
1Laboratory of Cell and Developmental Biology, National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland; 2Depertment of Oral-Facial Disorders, Osaka University Graduate School of Dentistry, Osaka, Japan; 3Department of Oncology, Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center, Georgetown University Medical School, Washington DC

Cells migrate, tumors invade, and tissues remodel in three-dimensional (3D) environments. However, most mechanistic studies in cell biology are conducted using traditional tissue culture on flat, two-dimensional (2D) substrates. Recent studies from a number of laboratories show that many fundamental biological properties of cells are governed by dimensionality and other physical properties of the local environment. Cells interacting with extracellular matrices that are 2D versus 3D differ in cell morphology, signaling, modes of migration, and requirements for cell-surface integrins and proteases. Another notable feature of 3D matrices in vivo is that many are fibrillar rather than flat or uniform in texture. Interestingly, "1D" fibrillar lines on a flat surface can mimic many of the properties of a cell-derived 3D fibrillar matrix in terms of cell morphology, migration mode, and even Golgi and centrosome orientation. The requirement for proteases in tumor cell invasion can also differ depending on the type of matrix. These studies emphasize the importance of choosing one's model system carefully, because mechanistic conclusions can differ significantly depending upon dimensionality and other physical properties. In fact, for some studies, a 1D system can provide more accurate physiological insights into 3D biology than regular 2D tissue culture.

The spatial arrangement and dynamics of 3D cell and tissue movements are particularly important in tissue remodeling processes involved in embryonic development, cancer, and tissue engineering. 3D culture and direct imaging of cells undergoing tissue remodeling in organ formation have revealed roles for integrins, fibronectin, and cell motility. Organ morphogenesis, as well as 3D in vitro reconstitution of the initial steps of this process starting from single cells, involves cell-surface interactions dependent on integrins, E-cadherin, and dramatic epithelial cell movements. The mechanisms that lead from undifferentiated, amorphous collections of cells to a complex branched structure in organ development involve cell-matrix interaction, novel regulatory molecules such as Cleftin, and coordinated effects on cell-cell and cell-matrix adhesion systems associated with transient epithelial cell motility. These applications of 3D model systems, combined with live-tissue imaging, should continue to provide new insights into the mechanisms of cell migration, invasion, and tissue remodeling.

Rho GTPase Signaling in Migration and Morphogenesis

Alan Hall1, Joanne Durgan1, Aron Jaffe1,2 and Noriko Kaji1. 1Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, Cell Biology Program, 1275 York Avenue, New York, NY 10065. 2Current address: Novartis Institutes for Biomedical Research, Inc., 250 Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge, MA

Rho family GTPases control signal transduction pathways that regulate the assembly and spatial organization of the actin cytoskeleton and associated cell-matrix and cell-cell adhesion complexes. Rho regulates contractile actin:myosin filament and focal adhesion assembly, Rac regulates the formation of membrane protrusions (lamellipodia), while Cdc42 triggers filopodial extensions at the cell periphery. In addition, Rho GTPases promote a diverse set of other cellular activities, including changes in gene transcription, the establishment of cell polarity, cell cycle progression, the organization and dynamics of the microtubule cytoskeleton and the activation of a variety of enzymes including PI 3-kinase and NADPH oxidases. The actin and microtubule cytoskeletons play a central role in driving many of the dynamic aspects of cell behavior and our particular focus is to determine the molecular mechanisms by which Rho GTPases regulate cell migration and cell morphogenesis. The disruption of normal tissue architecture and the appearance of inappropriate migratory activity are two defining characteristics associated with cancer progression towards an invasive and metastatic phenotype. Our long-term goal is to identify the mechanisms that drive these changes.

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