This application is for partial support of the sixth Gordon Research Conference on Molecular Mechanisms in Lymphatic Function and Disease to be held at the Renaissance Tuscany Il Ciocco Resort in Italy during the week of March 9-14, 2014, along with its associated GRS in the same location March 7-9. This conference has been held every two years since 2004 and is organized by the Gordon Research Conferences, an organization internationally known for the high quality, cutting- edge nature of its meetings;this is the first year for the associated GRS. This is arguably the most exciting and important meeting for the lymphatic research community. Celebrating its 10th year in 2014, its evolution has paralleled an ever- growing appreciation of how lymphatic vessels contribute to an increasing number of homeostatic and disease processes, and it has helped bridge lymphatic biology and physiology with a number of related fields from angiogenesis and tumor metastasis to adipogenesis and immunity. In the last decade, it is becoming increasingly appreciated that lymphatic vessels play important roles not only in their traditional functions of fluid, lipid and ell transport, but also in generic processes underlying a broad range of diseases. For example, lymphangiogenesis has been associated with nearly all acute and chronic inflammatory processes, and the last few years have brought to light completely new roles for both lymphatic endothelial cells and their drainage functions in directly modulating adaptive immunity. Additionally, new roles of lymphatic vessels and their transport functions in modulating lipid metabolism are emerging, as well as new roles for lymphatics in salt balance and stromal tissue remodeling. Therefore, there is an unprecedented need for lymphatic biologists, cancer researchers, physiologists, biomedical engineers and physicians to congregate in a forum and conduct a broad dialogue surrounding scientific developments in this field and to determine the direction of future basic and clinically- oriented investigative efforts. The new lymphatic field finds applications in broad areas of pathology, inflammation, cardiovascular and tumor biology with new efforts for clinical translation. This meeting will bring together the leading basic and clinically oriented experts in lymphatic biology with experts in related areas of immunity, metabolism, and vascular biology who are new to the lymphatic research community, whose contributions will spark new dialogue and collaborations, help usher in new paradigms, and guide the field in new directions.
This proposed Gordon Research Conference on Molecular Mechanisms in Lymphatic Function and Disease will bring together a diverse group of outstanding basic and translational scientists and clinicians studying different aspects of normal and pathological lymphatic biology using a variety of experimental models. Its format will attempt to reflect our ever-growing appreciation of how lymphatic vessels contribute to an increasing number of homeostatic and disease processes, and help bridge lymphatic biology and physiology with a number of related fields from angiogenesis and tumor metastasis to adipogenesis and immunity. An increased understanding of lymphatic biology and function in such processes is critical to address pathological lymphatic conditions that lead to inflammation, autoimmunity, cancer, and obesity and to improve the clinical treatment of primary and secondary forms of lymphedema.