The 2013 Malaria Gordon Research Conference (GRC) and its first associated Gordon Research Seminar (GRS) will focus on "Molecular and Cellular Biology of Malaria". These meetings will bring together leading international scientists from diverse disciplines including biochemistry, medicinal chemistry, vaccine research, molecular genetics, structural, cell biology and systems biology to focus on the most recent advances in malaria. The meeting will emphasize molecular and cellular aspects of the malaria parasite's basic biology, immunology, host-parasite-vector interactions and pathogenic mechanisms. The format will provide a stimulating forum to discuss cutting edge fundamental and applied research on malaria, with an emphasis on programs that contribute to the development of vaccines and drugs. The first GRC on Malaria was held in September 1997, and has become a well-established series of conferences that run every two years, and alternate between a meeting focused on basic oriented research and a meeting focused on more field and clinical aspects. The 2013 meeting will focus on the former: that is will emphasize basic research into host-parasite-vector interactions as well as the concepts around the development of novel interventions. The Malaria GRC has been extremely popular in previous years with one of the highest attendances among the Gordon Conferences and is usually oversubscribed. We also anticipate that the introduction of the first Malaria Gordon Research Seminar will promote active participation of young malaria researchers into the global collaborative efforts to combat this disease. The timing of this Malaria GRC in 2013 will coincide with the availability of advanced data from the first phase 3 clinical trials of a malaria vaccine involving ~10,000 African infants and children. Presentation of these results will be a major focus of the meeting. Against this, reports are beginning to emerge of parasites resistant to the newest anti-malarials spreading in Southeast Asia and the timing of the Malaria GRC will also be well suited to disseminate and discuss the very latest findings on this crucial topic. There is an urgent need to understand the emerging mechanism(s) of this resistance and of the ongoing requirements for new interventions and a deeper understanding of host-parasite-vector interactions. The 2013 Malaria GRC and its first associated GRS are important opportunities for established and emerging malaria research leaders to gather and address these issues under the auspices of a conference series that has a reputation for presentation of the latest unpublished data followed by vigorous and extensive discussion.
The 2013 Malaria Gordon Research Conference with its first ever pre-meeting Gordon Research Seminar will bring together scientists from many diverse disciplines to focus on Molecular and Cellular Biology of Malaria. Malaria eradication is now a strategic priority of many organizations including the US government but with the worrying emergence of resistance to the best available therapies and insecticides, and the absence of a licensed vaccine, new technologies and tools are needed to achieve this ambitious public health goal. These meetings will emphasize interactions between scientists with diverse backgrounds, as well as state of the art presentations on malaria and advanced technologies, in order to stimulate new thinking and new collaborations that will deliver the future tools required for malaria control and eradication.