International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology

Annual Report 2006

This Annual Report summarizes the activities of the IUBMB in 2006. The reports have been written in May 2007.

The report can be downloaded as pdf-file via the link provided below. You can read and print the Report with the Adobe Acrobat Reader. To download the Adobe Acrobat Reader click on the icon.

Annual Report 2006 for Download

Resignation of the President, George Kenyon

George Kenyon has resigned from his position of IUBMB President as of January 1, 2007. He became President at the General Assembly in Kyoto on June 24, 2006, and was supposed to remain in office until the next General Assembly in Shanghai in 2009. But he had agreed to take up a new job at the NSF in Washington, DC on January 1, 2007, and while training for this new job, he learned that it was not compatible with his position as IUBMB President, because the fact that he will be working for the NSF presents an irreconcilable conflict of interest since the NSF contributes to the U.S. dues of the IUBMB. According to the IUBMB Statutes (8.9.d), Angelo Azzi, who became President Elect at the General Assembly in Kyoto and was going to become President at the next General Assembly in Shanghai in 2009, became President on January 1, 2007, and will remain President until the General Assembly in Seville in 2012. The position of President Elect will remain vacant until the next General Assembly in Shanghai in 2009 and a call for nominations will be sent in due time in 2008 (together with the calls to fill the other positions which will become vacant in 2009).

Report of the President-Elect (Angelo Azzi)

Participation in the second EC meeting in Kyoto

After my election, I have participated in the second EC Meeting at the IUBMB congress held in Kyoto, Japan, on Saturday, June 24 and Sunday, June 25, 2006 and expressed in public the following points in my capacity as president elect:

  1. Need to reshape the image of the IUBMB and its structures and make it suitable for productive financial operations.
  2. Create a centralized supporting structure, for routine work, allowing more time to the officers for creative work.
  3. Create direct contact with individual members
  4. A professional congress organizer from IUBMB should assist in the organization of meetings. It will make the organisation for the local organisers simpler; it will produce a financial reward for the IUBMB and more finances to be redistributed according to the scopes of the Union.
  5. Obtain the charity status for the IUBMB in the US and elsewhere- collect charity support from professional organizations, from major foundations and donors
  6. Increase the income of the Union from new journals and a re-launch of BioFactors
  7. ICSU: Maintain optimal relations; merge interests with other Unions
  8. UNESCO and its program for basic sciences are ready to support IUBMB via MCBN
  9. Biotechnology should become a subcommittee biotechnology under the president elect and interacting with the portfolios for congresses, education and symposia. It should prepare better contacts with biotechnology companies
  10. Major immediate targets Education in Africa with an advanced school in 2008; Internet hardware for minimally developed countries; interactions with Latin America together with ASBMB inform of fellowships, visitors, exchanges.
  11. An advisory group made by the former presidents, secretary generals and important former EC members should be made.

 

During the subsequent months the following activities have been carried out:

 

Meeting in Zurich, Switzerland, with Webstage, AG

In the interest of having a central secretariat and professional help in the organisation of congresses I have organised the meeting on July 23-2006 in the offices of Webstage, AG. Together with George Kenyon, Jacques Weil and Peter Ott a number of topics have been discussed and the request was made to have a written offer for the described services. During a second visit Peter Ott and I later in the year realized that the "product" offer by Webstage, AG did not correspond exactly to the needs of the Union and that more fine tuning was needed. With the resignation of George Kenyon, other priority problems had to be considered and the accord with Webstage, AG has not been signed yet.

 

Incorporation of the IUBMB as charity in the United States

A law firm in Massachusetts Maselan & Jones, P.C. has accepted to incorporate the IUBMB as a charity in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Maselan & Jones, P.C. is a Boston-based law firm with a business oriented practice and expertise in advising emerging companies as well as established companies with sophisticated needs in the areas of taxation, estate and business planning and employee benefits. Steven Conway, an associate of Maselan & Jones, P.C has done the needed work. On October 11, in agreement with George Kenyon, I signed a letter of engagement (a retainer was paid by the Treasurer) and on February 12, 2007 on the Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc. was incorporated in Massachusetts.

 

Contribution to the establishment of the STAR program

On October 17, 2006 a conference call has taken place together with Sergio Ferreira, Bill Whelan and Judith Bond to discuss the issue of the cooperation between North and South America through a project called STAR. The PABMB STAR (Student Travel And Research) Program - The general objective of this program is to foster cooperation between the Member Societies affiliated to the Pan-American Association for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (PABMB). Three axis of cooperation are envisioned: “North/South” cooperation between ASBMB/CSBMCB and Societies in Latin America; “South/South” cooperation between Societies in Latin America; “Transatlantic” cooperation between SPB, SEBBM (the Portuguese and Spanish PABMB Adherent Societies) and Latin American Societies.

  • “North/South” cooperation will be funded by ASBMB and CSBMCB.
  • “South/South” cooperation will be funded by IUBMB, as well as by future resources obtained from organizations such as UNESCO ICSU, etc.
  • “Transatlantic” cooperation will be funded by SPB and SEBBM.

 

Participation in the meeting of the Review Committee of ICSU Grants Programme

On 8-11 November 2006 a meeting of the Review Committee of ICSU Grants Programme has taken place in Paris. An evaluation of the merits and drawbacks of the ICSU grants programme has been debated.

The main conclusions of the Review committee that was established by the ICSU Committee on Scientific Planning and Review (CSPR) to review the ICSU grants programme are as follows:

  1. On the past programme, 2001-2006 -The programme was good value for money and supported a variety of successful projects. These projects were in line with the priorities agreed by UNESCO and ICSU.
  2. On a potential future programme -There is a strong case for ICSU to support a revised and more focussed grants programme in the future.  This should focus on promoting new and genuine collaborations between ICSU’s Unions and Interdisciplinary Bodies in the areas of i) Capacity Building in a broad sense, and ii) New scientific horizons.  Such a programme can be an important mechanism for implementing ICSU’s vision and addressing these two strategic priority areas.  It also provides a practical and measurable link to the activities of the Scientific Unions, in particular.
  3. On funding -In the absence of additional funds, a proportion of the ICSU core funds provisionally allocated for a grants programme in 2008 and 2009 should be used for this purpose.  However, it is recognised that in the longer-term additional funding will be necessary to maintain a viable programme. Hence, a revised grants programme should be a very high priority in the negotiations for the new ICSU-UNESCO Framework agreement for 2008-2013 and the idea of a joint funding programme with UNESCO and other partners should be explored further.

 

IUBMB Archives

On Friday, December 1, 2006, I organised the visit of George Kenyon, Bill Whelan, E.C. (Bill) Slater, Andy Sutherland and my self to Britannia, Inc., a storage firm in Colchester, Essex, a town near London.  An account of the results of this visit is part of George Kenyon's report. Joe Swampillai, financial officer of Britannia, Inc. has sent a quotation for the digitization of all the files in form of readable PDF documents from approximately $28,000. A decision on the issue is pending.

 

IUBMB Advanced School of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology in Africa

During the month of December, I have reviewed the project for an Advanced School of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology in South Africa and discussed it with Iqbal Parker in Cape Town on December 14. The project has been now activated, the teachers have been invited and financial support from FEBS has been requested. The advanced school is scheduled to take place in Hermanus, Cape Town, South Africa on 01st-09th March 2008.

 

Report of the General Secretary (Jacques-Henry Weil)

It is rather difficult to summarize my activities, because

  1. many of them consist in interactions, by e-mail or by telephone, with people who are either within the IUBMB community, namely Executive Committee (EC) members, Officers of Adhering Bodies, Associated Adhering Bodies and Associated Regional Organizations, or outside this community, and
  2. they often overlap with the activities of other EC members, which are described in their reports. I’ll therefore focus on some of my activities which are more specific:

 

Preparation of the General Assembly (GA) 2006

  • Calling for and collecting the nominations by the ABs to fill out the 4 positions becoming vacant in June 2006 (President Elect, member for Education, member for Publications, member for Symposia) and sending them to the Chairman of the Nominating Committee.
  • Calling for and collecting the names of the Delegates and Associate Delegates appointed by their ABs and AABs to represent them at the GA (this is a very difficult and time-consuming task).
  • Calling for and collecting the nominations for membership of the Nominating Committee 2006-2009 made by the Delegates, and those made by the EC
  • Preparation, with Knut-Jan Andersen, of the YSP in Kyoto, together with the YSP Organizer, Prof. Nakano (100 participants). Participation in the YSP as a plenary lecturer
  • Preparation of the GA agenda
  • Preparation of the Briefing Book and mailing it to all the Delegates and Associate Delegates
  • Drafting the minutes of the GA. These minutes (which include the results of the elections to the Executive Committee and to the Nominating Committee and which give the list of the new members admitted as ABs and AABs) can be found on the IUBMB website

 

Preparation of the EC meetings to take place before and after the GA, respectively

  • Collecting the reports prepared by the EC members
  • Proposal for changes in the Statutes (together with Mary Osborn)
  • Applications for membership : Correspondence with Societies/Organizations applying to become ABs (Nigeria, Ukraine), AABs (Iran, Morocco, Vietnam), or Associated Organization (Cell Stress Society International)
  • Preparation of the agenda, including the presentation of future meetings by the Organizers and the discussion with Dr Chaimovich on the relations between ICSU and IUBMB
  • Preparation and mailing of the Briefing Book
  • Drafting the minutes of the two EC meetings

 

Preparation of other meetings held in Kyoto

  • with the organizers of the IUBMB Conference in Salvador in 2007
  • with the organizers of the FEBS Congress/IUBMB Conference in Athens in 2008, and on the relations between IUBMB and FEBS
  • with the organizers of the Shanghai Congress 2009
  • on the project of an Advanced School in Africa
  • on the activities of IUBMB in the area of Biotechnology

 

As requested by the GA, I prepared with Peter Ott a questionnaire which was sent to our 5 Associated Organizations (AOs) in order to review their situation and their interactions with IUBMB. The filled out questionnaires were sent to all EC members who were asked to evaluate them and to make recommendations. Finally I summarized the remarks made by the AOs and prepared recommendations which were sent to all EC members.

I asked Phillip Nagley, from Australia, and Mike Walsh, from Canada, if they would agree to help IUBMB revise its statutes. They have agreed and should soon send me their suggestions which I’ll circulate to the EC members.

I organized within the EC a discussion by e-mail and a vote to nominate a young scientist to participate in the ICSU Young Scientists Conference 2007 in Lindau, Germany.
Dr Alicia Kowaltowski, from Brazil, was nominated.

I attended a Spetsai Summer School in Greece, from September 1 to 5, 2006, organized jointly by FEBS, EMBO and IUBMB.

In December 2006, together with Knut-Jan Andersen and Jan Joep de Pont, we evaluated approximately 120 applications to select the top 16 young scientists who will receive a fellowship to attend the Conference in Salvador in May 2007.

I have been in contact with the SBBq Officers and Secretariat to organize the EC meeting in Salvador. I have prepared the agenda and the Briefing Book for that EC meeting.

I have attended, as the IUBMB Observer, the FEBS EC meeting in Madrid on December 16, 2006.

My activities as Chairman of the Wood-Whelan Research Fellowships Committee are summarized elsewhere in this Annual Report.

In closing, I want to thank all EC members, including those who rotated off and those who joined the EC in June 2006, for their friendly and fruitful collaboration.

Report on the Wood-Whelan Research Fellowships (Jacques-Henry Weil)

In 2006, 32 applications were received and 14 fellowships were awarded. The total amount spent (or committed) was 26,659 US $, which is within the yearly budget for these fellowships (30,000 US $).

On the IUBMB website there is a table listing the names of the 14 awardees and giving details about their research project, the duration of the stay, the amount awarded in US $ (in parentheses), the sending and receiving laboratories and the host lab supervisor.

The following figures can be mentioned:

  • The success rate was 43.75 %
  • The average age of the awardees was 28.5 years
  • The average length of the stay in the receiving laboratory was approximately 2.7 months
  • The average amount awarded was 1,900 US $ (the maximum which can be awarded is 3,000 US $)
  • Countries of the sending laboratory : Argentina (3), Cuba (2), Uruguay (2), Tunisia, Italy, South Africa, Poland, France, Spain, Canada
  • Countries of the receiving laboratory : USA (4), France (3), Sweden, Japan, The Netherlands, UK, Switzerland, Chile, Mexico.

It is interesting to note that 7 out of the 14 awarded fellowships (50 %) went to young scientists from Latin America.

A number of applications request travel grants to attend meetings or courses, but they have to be turned down without evaluation, because the guidelines say that « Fellowships will not be awarded to attend courses, symposia, meetings or congresses ».

In closing, I want to thank the other two members of the Fellowship Committee, namely Iqbal Parker and Avadhesha Surolia, for their very efficient collaboration.

Report of the Treasurer (Jan Joep de Pont)

(The Table to which some items in this report refer to can be found here)

  1. At the General assembly in Kyoto, the budget for the period 2006-2008 was approved. This budget (budget) expressed in kUSD is given in the first column of the Table
  2. On basis of this budget the Executive committee approved the budget for 2006 as proposed by the treasurer (column 2).
  3. The actual income and expenditures were audited in March 2007 by Bailey, Page & Roper from Liverpool UK and are summarized in column 3 (in italics).  
  4. In column 4 the difference between the actual income and expenditures and the budget is presented. Remarkable amounts are indicated in bold.
  5. The year 2006 ended with a profit of 262 kUSD, whereas a loss of 81 kUSD was foreseen. This was due to a higher income from publications of 49 kUSD; an income from investments of 64 kUSD above the budget;  less expenditures for activities of 110 kUSD,  which is partly due to the fact that the regional organisations concentrated most of their activities in 2007 and 2008.  In addition, the costs for the congress in Kyoto were 51 kUSD lower than foreseen. The “administrative” costs were also 35 kUSD lower than estimated in the budget.  Within this group the budgets for the EC meeting were somewhat higher than the budget. In addition, there were additional costs for legal expenses (registration of IUBMB in the USA) and archives (visit to Colchester).
  6. The treasurer has made a proposal for the Executive committee, that meets in Salvador in May 2007, to increase expenditures for activities in the forthcoming years.
  7. There were twelve Adhering Bodies with arrears in payment at  the end of  2006. Of these AB’s Canada and Spain have paid their dues shortly after January 1st. France did that for 90% and I expect that the residual 10% will be paid rather soon. I expect also delayed payments from Belgium and China in near future. With Cyprus an agreement has been reached for payment of the residual arrears in 2007. Egypt recently paid for its arrears of 2004 and 2005. The following AB’s did not pay their contribution for five years or more: Azerbaijan, Bulgaria, Latvia and Uzbekistan. In addition, the Slovak Republic has arrears of three years.

Report on the Publications Portfolio (Willy Stalmans)

The IUBMB Publications portfolio has been managed by Angelo Azzi for the first half of 2006, and thereafter by Willy Stalmans, his successor as Committee chairman.

 

Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Education

The latest impact factor of 0.646 is in the low range expected for an educational journal, but nevertheless higher than in the previous three years.

ASBMB became the publisher in 2002, but decided not to continue publication beyond 2006. Hence bids from other publishers were invited, and a new contract with Wiley-Liss – very generous to the IUBMB – was signed in June 2006. From January 2007 onwards the volumes published in 2002-2006 will be available on Wiley’s Interscience website, and the new editorial policy includes access without charge after an embargo of two years. In the meantime the relationship with ASBMB has remained optimal.

Elsevier continues to offer its digitized initial archive (vol. 1-29, 1972-2001) commercially through ScienceDirect. W. Stalmans has contacted Elsevier to investigate the possibility for IUBMB to acquire co-ownership of that archive, in order to make it also available on Wiley’s Interscience website.

 

Biotechnology and Applied Biochemistry

The journal has shown a spectacular upward development in 2006: the income provided to IUBMB more than doubled with respect to 2005. Its impact factor also doubled, to 1.890 from 0.942 in 2005 (and 1.0 in 2004 and 2003). From 2006 onwards, the publication frequency has also increased by half (from 6 to 9 issues per year).

During a visit of the new chairman of the Publications Committee to Portland Press a few less satisfactory points in the publishing contract were identified. This has resulted in a modified contract (effective from 2007 onwards) with the following prominent changes:

  • On termination of the agreement the electronic archive and the list of subscribers will be made available to IUBMB.
  • Colour images will be offered free of charge to authors of invited reviews, and charges may also be waived in case of hardship, provided that colour is deemed essential.

 

BioFactors

The journal has not recovered from its long-standing problems. Its impact factor (around 1.8 in 2003-04) has decreased to 1.162 in 2006. Half of the yearly third volume is published after the end of the year. Collaboration with ISVRB (the International Society of Vitamins and Related substances) is unproductive. The journal produces no royalty. Finally, both editors-in-chief have announced that they want to be replaced in the short or medium future.

 

IUBMB Life

Its impact factor had slightly decreased in the previous year (to 1.774), but this year it has recovered to 2.116. The income from the journal to IUBMB increased also by 8.5%.

7000 Copies of a special double issue in honour of Osamu Hayaishi have been distributed in Kyoto to all the participants in the 20th IUBMB congress. A special issue is also planned for the 10th IUBMB Conference in Salvador de Bahia (Brazil) in 2007.

Since 1999 the journal is published by Taylor & Francis, which is now part of the Academic Division of Informa plc. IUBMB Life has been placed under the Informa Healthcare umbrella, which was launched as a new division of Informa plc in January 2006. From 2008 onwards IUBMB may either stay with Informa under a new contract or engage another publisher.

 

Molecular Aspects of Medicine

Elsevier has entrusted this journal to a new Publisher, Jaap van Harten. At the IUBMB Congress in Kyoto the latter has placed the journal in the centre of a poster displaying Elsevier’s major publications in the sector.

After a period of irregular publication, Molecular Aspects of Medicine had lost its ISI impact factor. However, following an intervention by J. van Harten, Thomson ISI has accepted to list the journal again from 2007 onwards. Thus an official impact factor will again be available in June 2009. Further good news comes from recent Scopus citation analyses performed by the Publisher, which indicate that the 2005 and 2006 impact factors should have been around 6.1 and 6.5 respectively.

Inspection of the publishing contract had revealed that, by mistake, the contract between Elsevier and IUBMB had in fact already expired at the end of 2001. A new (and seriously updated) contract is currently being drafted. A notable positive aspect is that – for the first time – the journal will provide to IUBMB a modest income which, interestingly, is coupled to the journal’s impact factor.

 

Trends in Biochemical Sciences (TiBS)

Early in 2006 Elsevier appointed Jonathan Tyzack as the new dedicated in-house TiBS editor. IUBMB had been somewhat worried by a slight recent erosion of the impact factor (4-year data 2003-2006: 14.398/14.273/14.112/13.343). Discussions were initiated on this point with the editor during the Kyoto Congress and during a subsequent visit of the new Committee chairman to the TiBS editorial office in London. The recommendations were to re-orient the journal to a more academic scientific content, directed towards the most modern aspects of biochemistry, cell and molecular biology, and to a lesser extent on structural biology.

 

IUBMB/Sigma Maps

Although the author, Donald Nicholson, has celebrated his 90th birthday on January 9, 2006, his work on metabolic charts and animated e-maps is proceeding regularly. Among his recent achievements is a new edition of the Inborn Errors of Metabolism map, which has been well received by the Society for the Study of Inborn Errors of Metabolism. His latest “opus magnum” is an ‘animap’ of the respiratory chain, which will become available in final form in the spring of next year. Since Donald Nicholson has still several new projects, IUBMB shall negotiate a new contract with Sigma/Aldrich in the course of 2007.

 

Nomenclature Committee of IUBMB

From 2006 onwards Dietmar Schomburg (Cologne, Germany) is the new chairman of the Committee. An opportunity has been found to publish a new version of the Enzyme Nomenclature book that was formerly published by Academic Press. Tari Paschal-Broderick at Elsevier is coordinating the new publication.

Report of the Committee on Symposia (M. Iqbal Parker)

A total of 25 applications were received in both calls (1st April 2006 and 1st September 2006). 19 applications were approved and 6 applications were not approved while 1 application arrived well after the second deadline.

These approved symposia were held in Chile (1), France (2), Hungary (1), Italy (1), Slovenia (1), UK (2), USA (2), Germany (1), Greece (2), Spain (2), China (1), Portugal (1), and Australia (2). The number of events in the year 2006 was similar to 2005 where 29 applications were received and 20 symposia were supported.

Geographical distribution:
FAOBMB: 3; PAMBMB: 3; FASBMB: 0; FEBS: 13

 

Total monetary value of awards allocated in 2006: US$ 110,000

I. The composition of the IUBMB Committee on Symposia changed after the General Assembly in Kyoto in 2006

Chairman: Parker, M. Iqbal, South Africa

  1. Ascenzi, Paolo, Italy (2006-2012)
  2. Bond, Judith, USA (2006-2012)
  3. Chitnis, Chetan, India (2006-2012)
  4. Crane, Denis, Australia (2006-2012)
  5. Dirheimer, Guy, France (2003-2009)
  6. Ferreira, Sergio, South America (2006-2012)
  7. Guinovart, Joan, Spain (2006-2012)
  8. Lennarz, Bill (William), USA (2003-2009)
  9. Preiss, Jack, USA (2006-2012)
  10. Surolia, Avadhesha , India (2003-2009)
  11. Titanji, Vincent, Cameroon (2006-2012)
  12. Turk, Boris, Slovenia (2006-2012)
  13. Walsh, Michael, Canada (2006-2012)
  14. Wu, Jairui, China (2006-2012)

 

II. The activities supported by the Committee on Symposia and Interest Groups in the year 2006 were as follows:

  1. 13th International Symposium on Chromaffin Cell Biology (13-ISCCB); held in Pucón, Chile, from January 7 – 12, 2006; (S-351) Amount allocated US$ 7000; Contact person: Dr. Ana M. Cárdenas, ana.Cardenas@uv.cl
  2. IUBMB Symposium on Glycans on Proteins and Lipids: Implications in Cellular Functions and Evolution; held in Bangalore, India, from February 19 – 22, 2006; (S-348) Amount allocated US$ 6000; Contact person: Prof. Avadesha Surolia, surolia.@mbu.iisc.ernet.in
  3. IUBMB-EMBO Workshop on Molecular Characterization of Glycoproteins and Glycolipids and their Interactions with Lectins and Receptors; held in Bangalore, India, from February 22 – 26, 2006; (IG-245) Amount allocated US$ 3000; Contact person: Prof. Avadesha Surolia, surolia.@mbu.iisc.ernet.in
  4. Human and Microbial Genomics: DNA Arrays Applied to Human Pathogens and Diseases; held in Athens, Greece, from March 30 – April 7, 2006; (IG-247) Amount allocated US$ 4000; Contact person: Dr. Odile Ozier-Kalogeropoulos, odozier@pasteur.fr
  5. Reactive Oxygen Species as Signals that Modulate Plant Stress Responses and Programmed Cell Death; held in Plovdiv, Bulgaria, on March 31, 2006 (S–350) Amount allocated US$ 3000; Contact person: Dr. Tsanko Gechev, tsangech@pu.acad.bg
  6. Workshop on Biocalorimetry and Biological Thermodynamics (WBBT 2006); held in Rio de Janeiro, RJ, Brazil from April 30 – May 4, 2006 (IG–250) Amount allocated US$ 4000; Contact person: Prof. Lucia Bianconi, lucia.bianconi@gmail.com
  7. Trends in Enzymology; held in Como, Italy, from June 7 – 10, 2006; (IG–252) Amount allocated US$ 3000; Contact person: Prof. Nigel G. J. Richards, richards@qtp.ufl.edu
  8. Structure and Function of Large Molecular Assemblies; held in Erice, Italy, from June 8 – 18, 2006; (IG–243) Amount allocated US$ 4000; Contact person: Prof. Lodovico Riva di Sanseverino, riva@geomin.unibo.it
  9. Biochemistry and Molecular Biology of Sensor Enzymes and Proteins; held in Sendai, Japan, from June 15 – 16, 2006; (IG–251) Amount allocated US$ 4000; Contact person: Prof. Toru Shimizu, shimizu@tagen.tohoku.ac.jp
  10. Medical and Biological Perspectives in Proteases and Protease Inhibitors; held in Hyogo, Japan, from  June 25 – 27, 2006; (IG–254) Amount allocated US$ 8000; Contact person: Prof. Hiroshi Kido, kido@ier.tokushima-u.ac.jp
  11. 5th International Symposium on Glycosyltransferases; held in Tsukuba, Japan, from June 25 – 28, 2006; (S–356) Amount allocated US$ 4000; Contact person: Prof. Hisashi Narimatsu, secretary_office.GlycoT2006@ni.aist.go.jp
  12. 20th International Symposium on Radical Ion Reactivity (ISRIR 2006); held in Rome, Italy, from July 2 – 6, 2006; (S–353) Amount allocated US$ 3000; Contact person: Prof. Massimo Bietti, bietti@uniroma2.it
  13. The 3rd International Conference Genomics, Proteomics and Bioinformatics for Medicine; held in Novosibirsk, Russia, from July 10 – 16, 2006; (S–354) Amount allocated US$ 5000; Contact person: Prof. Alexander Archakov, gpbm2006@ibmc.msk.ru or: inst@ibmc.msk.ru
  14. 7th European Nitrogen Fixation Conference; held in Aarhus, Denmark, from July 22 – 26, 2006; (S–349) Amount allocated US$ 5000; Contact person: Prof. Jens Stougaard, stougaard@mb.au.dk
  15. IUBMB IG Workshops 14th European Bioenergetics Conference; held in Moscow, Russia, from July 22 - 27, 2006; (IG–244) Amount allocated US$ 9000; Contact person: Prof. V. P. Skulachev, skulach@belozersky.msu.ru
  16. AO 2006 – from bench to bedside. 12th Amine Oxidase and Trace Amines Workshop; held in Rotterdam, the Netherlands, from July 30 – August 3, 2006 (IG–248) Amount allocated US$ 2500; Contact person: Dr. Frans Boomsma, f.boomsma@erasmusmc.nl
  17. Nitric Oxide, Nitrolipids and Their Role in Immunity and Neurodegeneration; held in Davos, Switzerland, from August 15 – 18, 2006; (S–352) Amount allocated US$ 9000; Contact person: Prof. Angelo Azzi, angelo.azzi@mci.unibe.ch
  18. Molecular and Cell Biology at Spetsai: Past, Present and Future – A Forty Years Anniversary; held on the Island of Spetsai, Greece, from September 2 - 4, 2006; (IG–249) Amount allocated US$ 7000; Contact person: Lisbeth Heilesen, Lisbeth.Heilesen@mb.au.dk
  19. Vth International Conference on Cysteine Proteinases and Their Inhibitors: From Structure to Regulation and Biology; held in Portorož, Slovenia, from September 2 – 6, 2006; (IG–255) Amount allocated US$ 6000; Contact person: Assist. Prof. Boris Turk, Boris.Turk@ijs.si
  20. Oxidative Stress and Aging – Mechamisms and Causative Environmental Factors; held on the Island of Spetses, Greece, on October 1, 2006; (IG–253) Amount allocated US$ 2000; Contact person: Prof. Steffen Loft, sloft@pubhealth.ku.dk
  21. Proteomic Research: Advances in Biological and Medical Applications; held in Antalya, Turkey, from October 6 – 12, 2006; (IG–246) Amount allocated US$ 5000; Contact person: Prof. Tomris Ozben, ozben@akdeniz.edu.tr
  22. III International Symposium on Biochemistry and Molecular Biology; held in Havana City, Cuba, from October 16 – 20, 2006; (S–355) Amount allocated US$ 7000; Contact person: Prof. Carlos Álvarez, calvarez@infomed.sld.cu or scbm@fbio.uh.cu

Report of the Member for IUBMB Conferences and Congresses (Knut-Jan Andersen)

Effort has been directed to planning future IUBMB Conferences and Congresses.

These include:

  • 20th IUBMB International Congress of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology and 11th FAOBMB Congress, June 18-23, 2006 – Kyoto, Japan.
    Most of the planning and communication was made through numerous e-mails with several members of the planning committees.
  • The Young Scientists’ Program, June 16-18, 2006 - CO-OP Inn, Kyoto. The Young Scientists’ Program was planned in close collaboration with Dr. Turu Nakano and his collaborators as well as our General Secretary, Professor Jacques-Henry Weil. The selection of about 100 young scientists, based on their scientific merits, was performed in collaboration with the Japanese organizers. I also participated in the selection procedure representing IUBMB together with Professor Weil and Professor de Pont. A total of 98 young scientists presented their work as posters presentations. Six poster prizes were awarded and presented as oral presentations. Personally I had the pleasure giving the closing lecture entitled “Bioprospecting – using “old” methods as a “new” approach to cancer drugs”.  During the Congress I had the pleasure meeting again with many participants, all of them expressing their enthusiasm and thanking so much for the fellowships awarded allowing them not only to be a part of the Young Scientists’ Program but also allowing the participation in the entire Congress.
  • The 10th IUBMB Conference: “Infectious diseases: Biochemistry of the parasites, vectors and hosts”, 21-25. May 2007, Salvador, Bahia, Brazil will be a joint meeting with 36th Annual Meeting of the Brazilian Society of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. During the International Congress in Kyoto we had the pleasure meeting with the Brazilian organisers. During this meeting Dr.Hernan Chaimovich gave the latest information about the planning of the Conference including a Young Scientists’ Forum as an integrated part of the conference. Major topics were discussed and agreed upon, including geographical distribution of invited speaker as well as financial matters. Following this meeting I have been continuously communicating with the organisers at all levels via Email. This also includes planning of the Young Scientists’ Forum organised by Dr Alicia Kowaltowski.
  • Young Scientists’ Forum, as part of the 10th IUBMB Conference. The selection committee (H. Chaimovich, D. Foguel, A. Zaha (Brazil), and from IUBMB J-H. Weil, J.J. de Pont, and K-J. Andersen) received 137 applications and was able to select the 20 final, highly qualified, candidates based on their education, publications, motivation, and abstract of the work to be presented. The applicants originated from 32 different countries, and averaged 30.6 ears of age.
  • The 11th IUBMB Conference will be organized as a joint conference with the 33rd FEBS Congress, June 28 – July 3, 2008, at Stadium for Peace and Friendship in Athens, Greece.    During the International Congress in Kyoto we had the pleasure meeting with the Greek organisers. During this meeting Dr. Nikos Karamanos gave the latest information about the planning of the Conference/Congress.  The theme for the Congress/Conference will be “Biochemistry of Cell regulation”.   I also visited Athens in November together with the FEBS treasurer, Dr. Iain Mowbray and the FEBS Congress Counsellor, Dr. Adam Szewczyk, meeting with the organising as well as the program committee. One of the major topics discussed during this visit was the title and logo of the Congress/Conference not according to FEBS reflecting that this is a FEBS Congress and an IUBMB Conference. As a compromise, it was decided that  the size of the capitals for FEBS Congress should be increased over the size of the capitals for IUBMB Conference.   Following this meeting I have been continuously communicating with the organisers at all levels via Email. This also includes the planning of, and contribution from IUBMB, with respect to the Young Scientists’ Forum being planned preceding the Congress/Conference.
  • The 21st IUBMB International Congress and the 12th FAOBMB Congress of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, August 7 – 8, 2009, Shanghai, China. Planning is well on its way. During the International Congress in Kyoto we had the pleasure meeting twice with the different levels of the organising committees in China. The secretary general of the Congress, Dr. Jia-Rui Wu gave the latest information about the planning of the congress. The role of China Association for Science and Technology (CAST) in the organisation of the congress was also explained.  The Congress will have high level supports such as Chinese Academy of Sciences, Chinese Academy of Engineering, National Natural Science Foundation of China, and Shanghai Municipal Government in addition to 5 ministries. The Congress Theme is: “Biomolecules for Quality of Life”. The Tong-Ji University, one of the leading universities in China, was planned as the Congress venue. Major topics were discussed and, including geographical distribution of invited speaker as well as financial matters. The budget presented reflected high cost for the organisation of the congress and the organisers were asked to strive to reduce the costs in order to keep the registration fee as low as possible. In December I had the pleasure visiting Shanghai where I had several meetings with both the organising as well as the scientific committees. A site inspection of the facilities offered at the Tong-Ji University and also the Shanghai International Convention Center (SICC) was also included. My conclusion after the visit was that the Tongji University had a potential capacity to handle a conference with up to 1500-2000 delegates, but would need a lot of planning and organisation of infrastructure. SICC could handle more than 4000 delegates and the infrastructure was available. The organisers were therefore advised to negotiate with SICC and make reservations. However, an opening to the Tongji University should be kept for the worst case with number of delegates falling below 2000-1500. I have had continuous contact with the organisers via Email being informed about most major decisions and progress in the planning. However, a close follow up from IUBMB as well as possible professional assistance with respect to organisation will be vital for this event.
  • The 12th IUBMB Conference and 21st FAOBMB Conference: “The molecules of life: from discovery to Biotechnology”, September 26 – October 1, 2010, Melbourne, Australia. I have had regular contact with the organisers and Professor Phillip Nagley receiving reports on the planning process. So far Logos for the conference have been designed. These comprise one logo to denote the participation of IUBMB and FAOBMB in the 2010 conference, plus another logo to mark the ComBio2010 conference that provides the basis of our hosting the IUBMB and FAOBMB participants. In addition, the logos of the parent organisations IUBMB and FAOBMB will also be displayed as part of the conference badging. Also, a conference website has been set up, with a welcome message from the Co-Presidents Phillip Nagley and Leann Tilley. The webpage at http://www.asbmb.org.au/iubmb2010/ displays all the logos. As planning develops, the IUBMB2010 webpage will be expanded with more information.

Report of the Education Committee (Susan Hamilton)

1. Educational activities funded

The list below summarises the educational activities supported, with total funds distributed being $34 000.
 

  1. 35th Annual Meeting of the American Aging Association, held in Boston, MA, USA, June 2-5, 2006. This meeting was organized by Dr. Simin Nikbin Meydani. The amount granted by IUBMB was US$ 3,000.-
  2. 20th IUBMB Congress of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, held in Kyoto, Japan, June 18-23, 2006. This congress was organized by Drs. Donald Voet and Judith G. Voet. The amount granted by IUBMB was US$ 5,000.-
  3. Education Symposium held during the Society's XXXV Annual Meeting in São Paulo, Brazil, July 2-5, 2006. This education symposium was organized by Walter R. Terra. The amount granted by IUBMB was US$ 3,000.-
  4. SASBMB/IUBMB Cross-Disciplinary Session on Visualization in Biochemistry, held in Pietermaritzburg, South Africa, July 2-5, 2006. This session was organized by Prof. Trevor Anderson. The amount granted by IUBMB was US$ 5,000.-
  5. Free Radical School, preceding the 6th COSTAM/SFRR (Malaysia/ASEAN) Workshop "Micronutrients, Oxidative Stress and the Environment", held in Sarawak, Malaysian Borneo, July 6-9, 2006. This school was organized by Dr. Kalanithi Netsaretman. The amount granted by IUBMB was US$ 5,000.-
  6. Education Workshop, held during the XIII International Congress of the Free Radical Society International at Davos, Switzerland, August 15-19, 2006. This symposium was organized by Prof. Angelo Azzi. The amount granted by IUBMB was US$ 5,000.-
  7. Theoretical Course: Biomarkers of Oxidative Stress and Responses, held on the Island of Spetses, Greece, October 2-2, 2006. This course was organized by Dr. Steffen Loft. The amount granted by IUBMB was US$ 5,000.-
  8. Session "Education on Molecular Biosciences" held within the III International Symposium on Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. Held in Havana City, Cuba, October 16-20, 2006. This session was organized by Dr. Carlos Alvarez Valcárcel. The amount granted by IUBMB was US$ 3,000.-

 

2. Membership of the Education Committee

The composition of the Education Committee was revised at the 2006 meeting of IUBMB.

The new committee is:

Chair: Susan Hamilton (Australia) 2006 – 2009

  1. Trevor Anderson (South Africa) 2005 – 2008
  2. Ellis Bell    (USA) 2005 – 2011
  3. Steve Dahms (USA) 2005 – 2011
  4. Manuel Costa (Portugal) 2007 – 2010
  5. Bayardo Torres (Brazil) 2007 - 2010
  6. Leopoldo de Meis (    Brazil; ex officio)
  7. Judith Voet (USA; ex officio)
  8. Donald Voet (USA; ex officio)

Report on the IUBMB Website (Peter Ott)

The website of IUBMB is used to spread continuously updated information on all the aspects of IUBMB and it’s activities. The site has an increasing popularity as can be seen from the summary overview of the access statistics for the years 1999 – 2006 shown in the table below.

 

Year

Page Views

Visits

Visitors

 

Total

Average
per day

Total

Average
per day

Total

One-time

Multiple

1999

37795

103

14183

38

9653

7996

1657

2000

89559

244

33546

91

22654

18968

3686

2001

89014

243

38065

104

27365

23656

3709

2002

102237

280

47396

129

34668

30094

4574

2003

108642

297

51954

142

36645

31184

5461

2004

126504

345

57246

156

38035

32593

5442

2005

185852

509

74557

204

45847

38782

7062

2006

208348

570

96642

264

60698

51375

9323

 

 

A more detailed view of the access statistics for the past two years (see Table below) shows a clear increase of the visits to the IUBMB website.

 

Visits Trend

Month

2005 Visits

2006 Visits

% Change Visits

Jan

5,424

8,081

48.99%

Feb

4,994

7,688

53.94%

Mar

5,387

8,445

56.77%

Apr

5,801

7,878

35.80%

May

5,997

9,266

54.51%

Jun

5,470

9,190

68.01%

Jul

5,704

7,674

34.54%

Aug

6,363

7,275

14.33%

Sep

7,083

7,421

4.77%

Oct

7,626

7,852

2.96%

Nov

7,807

8,101

3.77%

Dec

6,901

7,771

12.61%

Total

74,557

96,642

29.62%

 

The most requested pages, besides the “Homepage” have been those with information about meetings and congresses, symposia, education workshops, the Wood-Whelan fellowships, the Standard for the PhD Degree, the Journals of IUBMB and last but not least the list of all the (Associate) Adhering Bodies with contact addresses including e-mail contacts.

 

 

Ongoing Projects:

The new IUBMB Website
The new IUBMB website is operative and online since January 2007. The improved structure is easy to navigate and several tools are included (site map; search function) to permit quick retrieval of content. Feedback on the new site from various sources is very positive so far.Because of an easily scalable site strucure additional content can be added in the future without significant modification. This will allow to report on new activites within the IUBMB portfolios. Also planned is a new section within the “Calendar of Events” to permit publication of the most important events of the Adhering and Associate Adhering Bodies.

The IUBMB Education Site
The internet platform for supporting Education Activites of IUBMB has been set up and is available via the URL: courses.iubmb.org. Discussions about the implementation of this “virtual classroom” in IUBMB Educational events are in progress.

The IUBMB Online Discussion Forum
The IUBMB discussion forum is available via the URL: forums.iubmb.org . This discussion platform has been updated and reinstalled together with the new website. The representatives of the IUBMB Adhering and Associate Bodies have been informed and have been asked to forward this information to the members of their respective societies.