Funding is requested under the R13 mechanism in partial support for the twelfth biennial FASEB summer conference focused on gastrointestinal biology, entitled ?GI Tract XII: The Molecular and Integrative Basis for GI Development, Homeostasis and Disease?. The meeting will be held in Snowmass Colorado on August 11-16, 2007. Initiated in 1985, these conferences have become one of the premier venues for the discussion of cutting-edge research related to gastrointestinal health and disease in a small meeting format (100-200 attendees). Two unique aspects of the programmatic organization provide special value to the field. One programmatic goal is to bring together researchers working in disparate fields to allow cross-fertilization of ideas, therefore a broad set of topics is covered at the meeting. This is the only small-meeting format of which we are aware that makes this contribution to gastrointestinal research. The nine scientific sessions will be organized around the topics of: Comparative Approaches to Understanding GI Function, Stem Cells, Development, Differentiation Along the Crypt/Villus Axis, Gastrointestinal Pathogens, Inflammatory Bowel Disease, Cancer, Ion Transport/Barrier, and The Genetics of IBD Disorders The second programmatic goal is active promotion of interactions between basic and clinical scientists. This is achieved by using each session to address topics spanning the molecular and cellular basis of health to disease in the GI tract, and again is facilitated by a small-meeting format. Scientifically, goals are to (1) provide scientific programming at the forefront of research in digestive diseases and related areas, organized around the underlying pathophysiology of these diseases and the mechanisms that afford protection against them, and (2) to integrate information at the molecular level that will shed light on regulatory mechanisms that define the organ-level behavior of the gastrointestinal tract. The program is organized to enhance the experience and involvement of junior investigators (students, fellows, and faculty up to the rank of Assistant Professor), by incorporating them into the lecture program in short lectures as a result of an abstract-driven competition for Junior Investigator Speaker awards. Our funding request is specifically to support this award program allowing more Junior Investigators to participate actively in the program.