ALAMCTA 2019: Scholarship funds supported by UKEMS

ALAMCTA 2019: Scholarship funds supported by UKEMS

The Latin American Association of Mutagenic Carcinogenesis and Environmental Teratogenesis (ALAMCTA, in Spanish), which is formed by scientific societies of Latin American countries that bring together scientists dedicated to the study of the interaction of the environment with genes and their effects on human health. ALAMCTAs mission is to gather scientists for collaboration, exchange of ideas, and the promotion of the development of Genetic Toxicology and Environmental Mutagenesis in the region. Founded in Mexico in 1980, it has had 10 Congress editions. Since the year of the first meeting in 1992, held in Mexico, the congress has been held in: Colombia, Brazil, Chile, Argentina and Uruguay. In the previous ALAMCTA congress held in Uruguay, PARAGUAY was chosen to host the XI version of the ALAMCTA congress.

The XIth ALAMCTA Congress, was held in the city of Asunción, capital of Paraguay, from April 25th to 27th, 2019. A total of 500 participants, attended the conference, including 77 international delegates from 14 different countries. 80% of the attendants were University students, and the remaining 20% were professional attendants.

In total, there were 80 poster submissions, and 10 scientific works were selected to compete for the ‘Young Investigator Award’. The organizing committee, headed by the chairwoman Professor Deidamia Franco de Diana and members from representing Scientific and Educational Institutions of Paraguay, together with the support of the international committee, decided upon the theme for the congress “GLOBAL HEALTH: GENES AND SOCIETY”. The aim of the theme of the conference was to integrate the concepts of mutagenesis, carcinogenesis and teratogenesis. The event was declared of interest by the National Council of Science and Technology of Paraguay (CONACYT) as well as the Scientific Society of Paraguay. We were also glad that many speakers came from all the major countries in the world despite having busy working schedules and logistic difficulties, thereby demonstrating the close comraderie among the senior and up and coming ALAMCTA members.

The official opening conference was delivered by the renowned Professor Paul White, on the topic of “The mutagenic and carcinogenic activity of combustion derived complex mixtures”. During the conference 3 mini-courses on: Mutagenesis, Radioprotection, and Biological Dosimetry. During the 3 days that the conference took place, a total of 12 symposiums were held, and 6 conferences, and 2 video conferences.

Aditionally, a workshop in Mentoring was also held for students and professors. A “Young Researchers Day” event was held as part of the conference. For this event, 10 selected students competed for a cash prize by presenting their research projects before a judging panel.

Furthermore, a meeting was held on the topic of natural products where scientists on this domain exchanged valuable information to advance the field. Lastly, a round table was set to discuss the effect of agrochemical exposure on different populations.

The aim was to integrate environmental and toxicological genetics with human health under a global perspective, seeking to avoid or mitigate negative impacts on human populations. The main objective of the congress was to provide a space for the exchange of ideas, while promoting interaction for researchers from different Latin American countries, Canada, United States, Australia and Europe. Another objective of the conference was to promote the scientific development of young researchers through cooperation between participating countries.

The main thematic axes were:
● Global Health
● Nutrigenomic
● Epigenetics, Epigenomics and Cancer
● Health and Environment
● Genotoxicity and Environmental Mutagenesis
● Genotoxicity and antigenotoxicity of Natural Products
● Cancer Genomics
● Cellular oxidative stress, DNA oxidative damage and Aging
● Genotoxicity of Agrochemicals
● Biological Dosimetry and Radioprotection
● DNA damage and repair

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