Contributed by Manole Cojocaru, IFCC representative Romania, President Symposium
Over the past several years, medicine has started to recognize the fundamental role of inflammation in nearly every disease process. The inflammatory response is an attempt by the body to restore and maintain homeostasis after injury and is an integral part of body defences. Inflammation is essentially beneficial, however, excess or prolonged inflammation can cause harm. Researchers and physicians have been redefining heart disease, Alzheimer's and even diabetes and obesity as inflammatory disorders.
After the great success of the 1st National Symposium "Inflammation 2004"which was held on April of 2004 in Sambata de Sus, Brasov County, the Second Symposium "Inflammation 2006" of the Romanian Society of Laboratory Medicine was held in Poiana Brasov, Brasov County, between 6-8 April 2006, under the auspices of the Romanian Academy of Medical Sciences. The title of the symposium was "Inflammation and Inflammatory Diseases". Distinguished Romanian and Foreign Scientists informed us about the updated developments on the research, diagnostic and therapeutic sector of inflammatory diseases. The Symposium brought together the most prominent names and sophisticated expert in the fields of medical biochemistry, molecular biology, genetics, immunology, pharmacology, thrombosis and hemostasis, molecular medicine and other related branches. Recent research indicates that the immune system and inflammatory reactions are governed and regulated by powerful neuronal mediators derived from the central and peripheral nervous system.
Dr. Manole Cojocaru, senior researcher, President of the Symposium, welcomed approximatley 130 experts from country and Europe, Canada and USA as participants in the Symposium. There were over 50 scientific papers presented (plenary lectures, oral communications), as well as a workshop on quantitative analysis of serum free immunoglobulin light chains by automated immunoassay. Knowledge of the immune system has expanded dramatically in the last decades, not at least due to enormous developments in molecular biology and biotechnology. The impact of immunology on clinical medicine is, however, still not in balance with the progress in our understanding of the immune system and the potentials for immunointervention. Nevertheless, clinical immunology has evolved recently into a discipline that contributes to medicine not only by giving insight into the pathogenesis of many diseases but also by offering huge possibilities for diagnosis and treatment of those diseases. Immunology has emerged as a clinically relevant discipline in almost every field of medicine. As the understanding of immunology continues to rapidly evolve, the clinical immunologist should be the bridge between immunology and clinical medicine, and translate these developments into daily clinical practice. An exhibition of the instruments and diagnostic reagents and drugs took place within the Symposium. The Symposium dealt with topics primarily related to issues of recent progress in inflammation research, new technologies and standards in laboratory medicine, the role of laboratory medicine based on evidence, the quality of analytic testing and requirements for competent laboratories for testing. Some of the specific topics covered were: pathophysiology of inflammation, inflammation/infection, inflammatory diseases as risk or trigger factors for human ischemic stroke, markers of oxidative stress and redox modification in chronic inflammation in end stage renal disease, evaluation of endothelial dysfunction in humans, inflammatory response of the brain following cerebral ischemia, cell volume regulation relation to ischemia and cell proliferation, the effect of NO synthase and lipoxygenase blockade on oxidative stress and experimental shock. The participation of national and international diagnostics companies definitely contributed to the success of this event. The Second Symposium "Inflammation 2006" was successful and was widely acclaimed. Special thanks again to all for a truly internationally friendly meeting in Poiana Brasov, Brasov County.
In conclusion, the investigations during the past five decades and advances in molecular biology, biochemistry, and genetics have contributed to the formulation of modern concepts of immunobiology in inflammation. Following the Second Symposium will be found a CD which the reader may find useful. The next Symposium on inflammation is planned to take place in 2008.