This proposal requests funds to support the annual Autumn Immunology Conference (AIC). The AIC was established in 1972 to promote Immunology research in the upper Midwest region of the United States. The conference provides a forum for the exchange of scientific data and ideas, fosters collaboration between scientists at different institutions, and provides career development and education opportunities to a diverse group of individuals with an interest in Immunology. The scientific focus of the meeting is intentionally broad;it includes basic Immunology and related biomedical fields such as cancer biology, pathogenesis, vaccine development, inflammation, and autoimmunity. Special emphasis is given to providing pre- and postdoctoral trainees with an opportunity to share their data, participate in scientific and career discussions, and to meet and exchange ideas with established investigators. The organizers also seek to attract, involve, and promote the careers of women and racial/ethnic minorities that are underrepresented in science. These objectives are met by inviting a group of outstanding Immunology researchers (12-13 each year) from around the world, to speak at the meeting. All presenters present both an oral and poster presentation in sessions that are designed to provide the greatest opportunity for feedback to the trainees. Finally, scholarship programs, career development workshops, and mentoring luncheons promote the inclusion of minority scientists and seek to recruit undergraduates into the discipline of Immunology.
High quality scientific conferences are vital to the public health mission of the NIH. This application requests funding for an annual scientific conference called the Autumn Immunology Conference. The purpose of this meeting is to exchange and disseminate information, and to explore contemporary problems in the field of Immunology. Thus it is consistent with the fiscal and programmatic priorities of the National Institutes of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), which is to conduct and support basic and applied research to better understand, treat, and ultimately prevent infectious, immunologic, and allergic diseases.