The Molecular Pharmacology Gordon Research Conference (GRC) is a key forum gathering scientists from basic, applied and clinical science in G protein coupled receptor (GPCR) research. Here we request partial support for the 2013 conference, 24th GRC edition, which will include both the GRC and the recently adjoined Gordon Conference Research Seminar (GRS).
Specific aims of GRC/GRS 2013 seek to attract the very best scientists from academic and industrial worlds to discuss major developments in the field, encourage open discussions on latest and also controversial ideas in the field, facilitae collaborative work in areas of translational opportunities, and serve as a highly effective forum for doctoral students, post-docs and junior scientists to share their results and interact with mor senior colleagues. The Molecular Pharmacology GRC traditionally alternates between US and Europe, and the GRC/GRS 2013 will be held in Tuscany (Il Ciocco, Italy). The conference will emphasize both emerging and rapidly growing areas in the field. Innovation in the 2013 program includes a strong emphasis on mechanisms relevant to physiology, discussion on unusual GPCRs or model systems, and the presentation of cutting-edge methodologies addressing single molecules to animal biology and human diseases. Specifically the program will cover four main areas: i) structural dynamics of receptors and receptor complexes including studies at the single molecule level, ii) ligand-biased signaling in cellular and in vivo, and novel approaches to physiology with an emphasis on animal models, (iii) novel opportunities for drug development and therapeutics, including the identification of GPCRs linked to human diseases and (iv) orphan and atypical GPCRs, revealing new mode of action of these important signaling proteins. Methodological aspects will include novel physical and computing approaches, the development of innovative biosensors and light-controlled processes, and novel therapeutic strategies. The conference will gather about 150 speakers and attendees and the anticipated outcome is cross-fertilization of ideas and techniques, towards enhanced understanding of GPCR biology and associated diseases.
Understanding GPCR function at multiple levels, from the isolated molecule to the multifaceted receptor/signaling complexes operating in vivo, is a major goal in fundamental biology and contemporary medicine. These receptors are targets for one third of drugs currently available on market, and represent over 20% of targets for drugs on clinical trials. Altogether GPCR research covers most therapeutic areas, including neurologic and psychiatric disorders, obesity, cardiovascular and endocrine conditions, as well as cancer and infectious diseases. Many GPCRs are under scrutiny in drug abuse research.