19th International Symposium on Plant Lipids. Cairns, Australia


A Message from the Chairman
April 26, 2010                                                 

The 19th International Symposium on Plant Lipids -- Bringing together the world’s leading plant lipid scientists for a one-of-a-kind program that will set the stage for innovations within the plant-oil-based industries. 

ISPL-2010 is drawing even closer, with the Scientific Program now available for viewing. We’ve had a fantastic response with over 200 oral and poster submissions across the usual ISPL sessions, as well as the feature symposium on Plant Lipid Biomaterials for the Renewable Resource Economy. This symposium will open the conference on Monday and Tuesday. It draws together invited talks and relevant ISPL submitted papers to examine the important role that plant lipids will make to achieving a sustainable bio-based future industrial economy, and to highlight the most recent scientific advances contributing to this goal.

Sessions on Monday will cover the discovery and engineering of novel biosynthetic routes to fatty acids with important industrial functionalities, and achievements in metabolic engineering of plants to manufacture and accumulate high concentrations of these chemical feedstocks. Progress in engineering seeds to produce novel wax esters will be covered in the Plant Oil Biolubricants section, and there will be leading edge updates on developments in a number of industrial crop platforms (including Crambe, Camelina, castor, Lesquerella and safflower).

On Tuesday the focus will switch to advances in understanding and increasing oil content in seeds and other storage organs, a high priority if global oil production is to be expanded to meet both future demands for both food and industrial feedstocks. The potential for producing high yields of biofuels and biomaterials from algal lipids will also be examined, and a discussion forum will provide the opportunity to explore the respective abilities of oil crops and algal production systems to contribute to expanded production. The final session for the symposium will bring together three speakers with extensive agribusiness experience to scope out the challenges to expanding industrial cropping, maintaining separation from food supply, and achieving an effective integration of agricultural and industrial value chains.

At the conclusion of sessions on both Monday and Tuesday, there will be a mixer reception held in the poster hall to allow discussion with speakers and ISPL poster presenters.

The regular ISPL sessions will be held from Wednesday to Friday, and have attracted a high standard of oral presentations. Sessions are detailed in the Program. Highlights include:

  • Reports from a number of research groups updating synthesis of EPA and DHA in seed oils, clearly a remarkable achievement in metabolic engineering of product quality and one that promises to have significant commercial impact in the years ahead.
  • A new session on Bioinformatics for the Lipidome, to bring delegates up to speed with advanced data-handling options associated with rapidly advancing lipidomics technologies.
  • Presentation of the Terry Galliard Medal to Christoph Benning and the Paul K Stumpf Award to Yuki Nakamura, two very deserving winners.
  • A closing session of short talks from selected ISPL poster presenters.

We have managed to keep Wednesday afternoon as free time for ISPL delegates to enjoy the beautiful Cairns marine and rainforest regions. Organised tours to some of the attractions are available through the conference. The conference will close at 12:30 on Friday to allow time for delegates to head off for post-conference touring, or evening flights home.

We haven’t forgotten the social program either. There will be a Welcome Reception including drinks and light food at the Cairns Convention Centre on Sunday 11 July from 5:30-7:00. Join us there to catch up with other delegates, and experience a colourful display of local aboriginal dance and culture. On Monday and Tuesday there will be poster mixers (drinks provided) at the close of the day's session. And on Thursday night it’s the Gala Dinner at the nearby Hilton Hotel, with entertainment from an Australian bush band. Don’t miss out on the cane toad racing during the pre-dinner drinks! All of these events are included in the cost of registration for ISPL.

This is a conference not to be missed. It comes at a time where rapid advances in plant lipid science are beginning to be harnessed into the development of breakthrough plant oil products to improve human nutrition and provide a renewable raw material base for future industry. And it is located in one of the most picturesque and environmentally significant regions of Australia, nestled between two World Heritage listed regions.

We welcome you all to joins us at ISPL in Cairns this July.

Allan Green
Chair, ISPL-2010 Organising Committee

For a historical view of ISPL, see Hartmut K. Lichtenthaler's "Thirty Years of International Symposia on Plant Lipids." (pdf)

Sponsors for ISPL-2010 

ISPL-2010 is organized by the Australasian Section of AOCS.   

To register your interest in ISPL-2010 and receive further information, send an e-mail to ISPL2010@aocs.org.