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News

WBC2020 – further update and exciting news!

During these challenging times the WBC Executive Committee has been involved in many discussions with the IUSBSE representatives acting as advocates for the various regional Biomaterials societies and have decided to reschedule the Congress to 11th-16th of Dec 2020. This was a difficult decision, as I’m sure many are aware, with many options open and no one right answer. Many other conferences are being cancelled altogether, some are investigating the potential to go virtual; the WBC is a major event and we are very lucky to have such a prestigious event planned within the UK.

If attendees have any specific queries regarding the conference registration and the policy relating to Modification & Cancellation – this can be found here. For those who may not be able to attend the organisers are also in the process of extending the deadline for cancellation beyond the 15th of April 2020 and hope to announce this new date shortly. But before you may think about cancelling, please do look out for the exciting and creative opportunities that will be showcased over the coming months with the introduction of a WBC2020 Virtual Community and Meetings Platform.

The WBC2020 Executive Committee has also been working with PCO (MCI) in light of the COVID-19 crisis. Specifically, in addition to normal day-to-day activities, they have been working on developing a mitigation strategy in the case that there are further restrictions due to the pandemic later in the year. This strategy is based on the development of digital engagement and virtual meetings solutions.

It was exciting to hear that not only have they planned for potential difficulties, they are also launching WBC Online, a comprehensive digital space where all WBC registrants and international biomaterials specialists can come together in online discussion forum to share, learn and engage with each other. The WBC Online community will be able to join online special interest groups and gain access to a valued pool of e-resources in the run up to, during WBC Live and beyond. In addition to hot news, product development and up and coming biomaterial society events featured on the platform, all WBC registrants will be able to view and participate in a schedule of online WBC interactive webinars, society symposia, WBC sponsored satellite webinars and international guest lectures to be broadcast in the months running up to WBC Live. All WBC registrants will be auto-enrolled into WBC Online and will benefit from all of its features, including live streamed sessions broadcast live from WBC Live. Additionally, all registrants will enjoy access to WBC Online for a period of two years as part of their 2020 registration fees.

Some attendees and group PIs have expressed concerns over the rescheduling of the event for PhDs or PDRAs who may no longer be in their employ in Dec. The WBC Executive Committee are in the process of discussing solutions to this and will be in a position to update over the coming weeks.

The UKSB will still be hosting a special workshop as part of the event, and look forward to many of you attending. We are excited about the prospect of engaging widely during the physical event in Glasgow, and certainly the opportunities that a virtual platform may enable.

In the run up to this event the UKSB will also be co-hosting a free virtual event with many of the UK Centres of Doctoral Training (CDT) engaged in biomaterials and regenerative medicine research. Updates for this will be coming soon, but there will be an opportunity to take part with a call for abstracts coming out soon.

The UKSB council take this opportunity to wish you and your families well. Please keep safe and look after each other, even if virtually.

World Biomaterials Congress

COVID-19 (Coronavirus) Statement

Following the recent developments in the COVID-19 (coronavirus) situation, we have taken the difficult decision to postpone the 11th World Biomaterials Congress which was due to take place in Glasgow on 19 – 24 May 2020.

The UKSB will be holding a special meeting within the World Congress and are proud to be a part of, and support the international conference.

As demands on the health service will increase significantly over the next few months, and the UK government has recently recommended social distancing and restricting travel we do not feel it is appropriate for us to run large-scale events. Our congress brings together professionals from all around the world, and our Board of Trustees is keen to avoid the risk of transmission to our delegates. 

The congress will now take place from 11 – 16 December 2020 remaining at the SEC in Glasgow and we will automatically be moving the current programme over to the December schedule and hope that you are available to attend at this time.

If you are taking part in this congress we will be in touch with further details soon.

WBC Conference Secretariat

wbc2020.org/

Job Advert

Research Assistant, Faculty of Dentistry, Oral and Craniofacial Sciences

King’s College London (KCL), London, United Kingdom

The salary will be paid at Grade 5, £32,676 per annum, inclusive of £3,500 per annum London Allowance.
This post will be offered on a fixed-term contract for 12 months.
This is a full-time post.

Applications are invited for Research Assistant to work alongside with Dr Sherif Elsharkawy in the Faculty of Dentistry, Oral and Craniofacial Science at King’s College London. The research project will be focused on the design, synthesis and purification of recombinant mutated and non-mutated proteins, known to be involved in dental hard tissue development. These proteins will be employed to fabricate protein-based matrices to understand biomineralization mechanisms at multiple lengthscale. The goal will be to generate in vitro models to investigate developmental and pathological mineralisation. Alongside with the principal investigator, the candidate will play a major role in setting up a Biomineralization Lab at King’s College London.

Ideally, you will have (or near completion) a PhD in Chemistry, Materials Science, Molecular Biology, or Engineering and experience in biomineralization as well as one or more of the following areas:

1) Protein Production.

2) Protein-based mineralization.

3) Disordered proteins.

4) Hierarchical materials.

The selection process will include a panel interview and a presentation.

To apply, please register with the King’s College London application portal and complete your application online.

Informal enquiries should be emailed to  Dr Sherif Elsharkawy at sherif.elsharkawy@kcl.ac.uk

Closing date: Midnight on Friday 24 January 2020

Dr Caroline J Harrison Lab-2-Lab Award

Postdoctoral Research Associate, Bioengineering and Healthcare Technologies Group,School of Clinical Dentistry, University of Sheffield

Host laboratory:
Prof Alastair Sloan, Dr Wayne Nishio Ayre and Mr Jabur Khan The Mineralised Tissue Group, Dental School, Cardiff University

The purpose of the placement was to develop an ex vivo bone infection model to screen antimicrobial and osteogenic bone regeneration materials. The Mineralised Tissue Group at Cardiff University has considerable experience of developing these models so a 3 week placement was undertaken to in order to understand the methods involved in the development of ex vivo models.

Prof Alastair Sloan and Dr Wayne Nishio Ayre arranged that I could work with Mr Jabur Khan, a PhD student currently developing an ex vivo bone infection model. During the first week Jabur demonstrated the ex vivo bone infection model that he is currently developing and trained me in the various techniques including the sectioning of the bone and the setting up of Trowell-type cultures which are essential for keeping the bone viable whilst preventing excessive migration of the cells out of the bone. Jabur also showed me the immunohistological techniques he is currently optimising to be able to assess the distribution of biomarkers in the bone models. Furthermore, I observed the setting up of other ex vivo models including a model to assess the viability of the gingiva in a mandible culture model which Dr Amr Alraies is currently researching.

Over the next two weeks I was able to set up my own ex vivo cultures in order to investigate the effect of the dual action bone paste currently under development by the research team at The University of Sheffield. It was very useful to get hands on experience setting up the model as well as investigating different methods to apply the paste to the model. I assessed my models using viability assays and histological techniques. My lab work went very smoothly which was in part due to the fantastic technical support staff at the School of Dentistry, University of Cardiff. The laboratory managers and technicians including Dr Fiona Gagg, Dr Sarah Youde and Ms Wendy Rowe all provided excellent inductions and support material, which allowed me to work in the laboratories with ease and confidence.

I was very pleased with the consistency of the data from the assays I carried out, and I would say this was my professional highlight of the visit. My personal highlights were some lovely sunny lunches in the small nature haven provided directly outside the entrance of the University Hospital of Wales (see picture). Due to the success of this placement we are now looking forward to establishing future collaborative projects between the Mineralised Tissue Group at Cardiff University and the Bioengineering and Healthcare Technologies Group at The University of Sheffield.

UK Society for Biomaterials 2019

The first joint conference of the TCES and the UKSB will be held at the University of Nottingham between 11-13 June 2019.

University of Nottingham, UK: 11-13 June 2019

Full Programme available to download here

The first joint conference of the Tissue and Cell Engineering Society and the UK Society for Biomaterials will be held at the East Midlands Conference Centre, situated on the scenic University of Nottingham campus in the Midlands, UK.

Chair: Dr Lisa White

Any enquiries contact: tces-uksb@nottingham.ac.uk

UKSB logo
TCES logo

Gloria Young UKSB 2017

I am a second year PhD student at Imperial College London, researching hybrid materials for use in cartilage replacement applications. Receiving a travel award from UKSB allowed me to attend the ESB 2017 conference in Athens and to give a presentation of my work. This was the first presentation I had given outside of my home university, and as such was a great experience in building confidence in communicating science and speaking in front of an international audience. ESB represented an important opportunity for discussing and developing my research with other researchers from a range of backgrounds and with a huge variety of expertise in the field of biomaterials. The feedback and scrutiny my work received has been a stepping-stone in developing the project into the final year of my PhD. Additionally, as a result of a meeting at the conference I have begun a short secondment in Chile, an amazing opportunity which would not have been possible without attending ESB.

Gloria Young, Imperial College London. October 2017 

Banner caption: Neurons patterned in lines (James Kinsella)
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