Oncologie Volume 25 Issue 3 (May 2023)
A summary of the second MACR international scientific conference (2nd MSC)
Eng Wee Chua, Audrey Chee Hui Yong, Der Jiun Ooi, Jonathan Chee Woei Lim, Jhi Biau Foo, Gopal Natesan, Sau Har Lee, Yuan Seng Wu, Shing Cheng Tan, Johnson Stanslas
Page range: 333-334
The International Conference of Drug Discovery and Translational Medicine (ICDDTM’18) held at Everly Hotel, Putrajaya from the 3rd-5th December 2018, attracted approximately 270 delegates from local and abroad.
The inaugural 1st MACR Scientific Conference (1st MSC) from the 3rd – 4th December 2019, attracted approximately 150 delegates from local and abroad. The theme was “Cancer research in Malaysia: Is there a need for a paradigm shift?”
Due to COVID-19 pandemic, MACR and its collaborators have decided to postpone the planned ICDDTM’20 to the 7th – 9th December 2021 and was renamed to ICDDTM’21. ICDDTM’21 was successfully run as a virtual conference attracting hundreds of participants globally.
Held in MAHSA University in Selangor from the 7th – 8th December 2022. This was the first time MACR, MOS and collaborating universities hosted the event in hybrid form, where the participants get to engage with local and international speakers who were physically invited and who were remotely connected. A special forum on Cancer Drug Access was also streamed live via Facebook and YouTube.
Big Data: Principle Component Analysis (PCA) & Partial Least Square (PLS) Analysis using SIMCA
This multivariate data analysis (MVA) course will provide the participants with the basics and advanced knowledge on Principal Component Analysis (PCA) and Partial Least Square Analysis (PLS). The course focuses on the use of these important statistical methods in developing and validating questionnaire and identifying crucial variables/metabolites out of thousands from human and plant samples. Hands-on training and practical applications using SPSS and SIMCA will also be provided.
Conducting a Pharmacometric-Based Study 101
This workshop is designed to impart the skills on both theoretical and practical aspects of the pharmacometric approach.The workshop content is provided as a combination of lectures, review of data, example of codes, and data analysis results, in addition to hands-on exercises. Following the workshop, the participant should be able to understand the conceptual basis and rationale for the population approach to pharmacometric-based study, where and when population methods may be optimally applied and the basic understanding to the format for fundamental NONMEM® datasets.
A Painless Way of Analysing Next-Generation Sequencing (NGS) Data
Recent years have seen a surge in the use of next-generation sequencing (NGS) for examining the genetic basis of complex diseases and drug response. However, analysing NGS data can be challenging, as many of the software tools typically require the users to have a basic grasp of command-line (or Unix) operations and programming languages. This one-day workshop is intended for those who are new to NGS and looking for a painless way to analyse NGS data in a non-Unix environment. As such, this workshop is suitable for students and researchers who are working in the fields of pharmacogenomics, cancer genomics, drug discovery, biomedicine, life science, and computational biology, or those who wish to work at centres for genomic or translational medicine. Our main objective is to equip the participants with the skills necessary for translating genomic data into meaningful functional annotations. Throughout the workshop, the participants will be taught how to run NGS analyses on a user-friendly web-based application, Galaxy, that is designed for scientists with little proficiency in bioinformatics.
Stem cell-based therapy
In this pre-conference workshop, we are delighted to have the representative from National Pharmaceutical Regulatory Agency (NPRA) to walk us through the current guidelines for cell and gene therapy product. We have also invited Clinical Research Center (CRC), Ministry of Health Malaysia to speak on their experience to bring novel drugs to phase 1 clinical trial and the progress in Malaysia thus far. The session will be followed by lectures from eminent speakers to discuss the present applications of induced pluripotent stem cells, and the introduction to the cell reprogramming workflow which covers end-to-end solutions including: reprogramming, characterization, expansion, genome editing, differentiation & banking, of which the latter is supported by Thermo Fisher Scientific. Interactive fun games and quizzes will also be provided during the above programs with many prizes to be won.
CRISPR-Cas9 Gene Editing Technology
Since its successful repurposing for eukaryotic cells uses, the CRISPR gene editing technology has revolutionized and taken the field by storms. The commonly employed CRISPR system is the CRISPR-Cas9 and to date, there are a plethora of engineered Cas9 variants that enable broader applications of this technology. These applications include knocking out gene, inducing/reverting mutations, DNA fragment insertion, gene expression modulations and epigenetic modifications. Moreover, there are recently developed CRISPR-Cas9-based prime editing and base editing tools that allow precise and highly efficient single or multiple bases editing. Despite these advancements, researchers who are new or would like to utilize this technology may sometimes find that it is overwhelming, challenging and costly. Nonetheless, none of these are necessarily true, CRISPR-Cas9 is considerably a straightforward and cheap technology as long as the researchers grasp its principles and well-informed on the complete experimental workflows pertinent to their research objectives.
Microbiome-based Therapies: Challenges and Success
Microorganisms in human body, which were once considered mainly in the context of individual pathogen interactions with the host, are now deemed a functional part of the body that provides multiple benefits. In fact, new understanding of the microbiome and its relationship to health is starting to change the conventional approach in management and treatment of diseases. This virtual symposium is a timely initiative that helps people to keep abreast of the latest development of this field, of research.
Conducting A Pharmacometric-Based Study 101
This course is designed to impart the skills on both theoretical and practical aspects of the pharmacometric approach. The workshop content is provided as a combination of lectures, review of data, example of codes, and data analysis results, in addition to hands-on exercises. Following the workshop, the participant should be able to understand the conceptual basis and rationale for the population approach to pharmacometric-based study, where and when population methods may be optimally applied and the basic understanding to the format for fundamental NONMEM® datasets.
Diagnosis & Management of COVID-19: East Meets West
Addiction: What We Know and Way Forward
Addiction is a neuropsychiatric disorder with an immense global economic impact. It is characterised by compulsion, loss of control and emergence of a negative emotional state when access to the substance is blocked. These features involve the brain reward mechanism and long-lasting molecular and cellular changes. To date, numerous studies have been carried out to advance the knowledge on addiction, with efforts to focused on the challenging components i.e. sensitisation, counter-adaptation, abstinence, craving and relapse. Hence, this symposium aims to disseminate timely information to guide researchers, policy-makers and regulators in implementing evidence-based treatment and preventive interventions.
Big Data: Principle Component Analysis (PCA) & Partial Least Square (PLS) Analysis Using SIMCA
The multivariate data analysis (MVA) e-workshop will provide the participants with the basics and advanced knowledge on Principal Component Analysis (PCA) and Partial Least Square Analysis (PLS). The course focuses on the use of these important statistical methods in developing and validating questionnaire and identifying crucial variables/ metabolites out of thousands from human and plant samples.
Emerging Technologies in Precision Medicine
The objective of this symposium is to give participants an overview of relevant, contemporary technologies in precision medicine. We will focus on next-generation sequencing, proteomics, and CRISPR gene editing, which have been used extensively to elucidate interindividual variability of drug response, and the pathogenetic mechanisms of a variety of diseases. The symposium will consist of alternating sessions of webinars, discussions, and online practicals. The webinars will cover different applications of next-generation sequencing, proteomics techniques, and CRISPR in precision medicine. The first practical session will cover the basic mechanics of a typical pipeline for analysing next-generation sequencing data. The second practical session will cover the in-silico planning of CRISPR experiments, including selecting a suitable plasmid construct, designing specific guide RNAs and repair templates, delivering CRISPR packages into cells, and verifying target gene edits.
One of the most anticipated events
in the year 2023
With the conference theme “Scientific Discoveries: Impacting Healthcare and Driving Economic Growth”, ICDDTM’23 is geared to examine the symbiotic relationship between science and economy.