RNAi Europe & Advances in qPCR

Posted: 2 August 2008 | EPR | No comments yet

From 16-18 September 2008, and to be held in Stockholm, Sweden, Select Biosciences invites you to the 5th annual RNAi Europe – Europe’s largest conference & exhibition dedicated to RNA interference. It will also be conveniently co-located with Advances in qPCR conference and exhibition.

From 16-18 September 2008, and to be held in Stockholm, Sweden, Select Biosciences invites you to the 5th annual RNAi Europe – Europe's largest conference & exhibition dedicated to RNA interference. It will also be conveniently co-located with Advances in qPCR conference and exhibition.

From 16-18 September 2008, and to be held in Stockholm, Sweden, Select Biosciences invites you to the 5th annual RNAi Europe – Europe’s largest conference & exhibition dedicated to RNA interference. It will also be conveniently co-located with Advances in qPCR conference and exhibition.

RNAi Agenda

(correct at time of print)

Day 1

8:00am – Registration

8:55am – Chair: Enal Razvi, Biotechnology Analyst, Selectbiosciences

9:00am – Combination Approaches to Contain Ongoing Coxsackievirus Infection

Jens Kurrick, Professor, Universität Stuttgart

We employ RNA interference to inhibit coxsackievirus B3, a major heart pathogen. Antiviral potency of multiple shRNAs as well as of a combination of a soluble variant of the virus receptor with an siRNA will be compared.

9:30am – Therapeutic Applications of RNAi for HIV Infection

John Rossi, Professor, Beckman Research Institute

10:00am – The Off-Target Specificity of siRNA on Near-Perfectly Matched Targets

Zicai Liang, Professor, Peking University

The off-target effects of single siRNAs on their single- and double mutated targeting sites were exmined and mechanism of mismatch tolerance in RNAi was explored.

10:30am – Coffee and networking

11:30am – Pharmaceutical Development of Dicer-substrate siRNAs

Mark Behlke, Chief Scientific Officer, Integrated DNA Technologies

Dicer-substrate siRNA (DsiRNA) are synthetic oligonucleotides that are processed by Dicer prior to RISC loading. DsiRNA often show improved potency over traditional siRNA in vitro and show similar benefits in vivo.

12:00pm – Small RNAs and Cell Proliferation/Differentiation

Annick Harel-Belan, Director, Laboratory of Epigenetics and Cancer, Institute Andre Lwoff

Small RNAs are essential components in the control mammalian cell proliferation/differentiation and in tumorigenesis. Small RNAs can also be used to explore this control in normal and tumor cells.

12:30pm – Lunch and networking

2:30pm – Development and Optimization of a Novel RNAi Therapeutics Platform

Dimitry Smarsky, Vice President, RXi Pharmiceuticals

The design and effective delivery of synthetic RNAi compounds are important factors for therapeutic applications. We will present data obtained with our proprietary rxRNA™ compounds, which can be up to 100 times more potent than conventional siRNAs, demonstrate nuclease resistance, and are potentially more specific for their intended targets. We will also discuss the possible mechanism of incorporation of chemically modified molecules into the RNAi machinery.

3:00pm – Analysis of the MicroRNA and Epigenetics Market Landscape

Enal Razvi, Biotechnology Analyst, Select Biosciences

In this presentation, I will present some vignettes from our continuing industry coverage of the microRNA research tools, diagnostics/therapeutics, as well as the epigenetics marketplace. The data reveal market trends that will be discussed in the broader context of the evolution of these fields, and the associated market opportunities that they create.

3:30pm – Coffee and networking

4:00pm – RNAi: From Mechanism to Medicine

Prof. Craig Mello, University of Massachusetts*

RNAi offers astounding potential for understanding and manipulating the genetic basis of disease and yet there are still many mysteries regarding its underlying mechanism. This talk will describe the discovery of RNAi and explore those remaining mysteries.

*Video Presentation and Live Telephone Link

5:30pm – End of Day 1

Day 2

9:00am – Identification of Targets for a Cartilage Specific MicroRNA

Prof. Tamas Dalmay, University of East Anglia

We identified target genes for miR140 by suppressing or over-expressing the miRNA in cells and profiling the expression of mRNAs. Different approaches to process the data will be discussed.

9:30am – How Small RNAs Regulate Multiple Target mRNAs

Joerg Vogel, Max Plank Institute

Small non-coding RNAs (sRNAs) are an emerging class of post-transcriptional regulators of bacterial gene expression. Such RNAs are typically ~ 50 to 250 nucleotides in length, and are expressed from the intergenic regions of bacterial chromosomes. Where studied in detail, most sRNAs were found to act on trans-encoded mRNAs to modulate their translation and stability.

10:00am – Quantification and Functional Analysis of miRNA in Mammalian Cells

Martin Kreutz, Scientist R&D – miRNA Research, Qiagen

Qiagen have developed a robust and accurate method for transcriptome-wide miRNA quantification using SYBR Green detection-based, real-time PCR. The miScript System is highly specific, sensitive, and requires very small amounts of input RNA.

10:30am – Coffee and networking in main exhibition hall

11:30am – Targeted Genome Editing in Mammalian Cells Using Engineered Zinc Finger Nucleases

Trevor Collingwood, Sigma Aldrich

12:00pm – Beyond miRNAs. Discovery and Profiling Small ncRNAs on Flexible Arrays

Sonja Vorwerk, R & D Scientist, Febit

As there are more than just miRNAs in the field of small non-coding RNAs, new and flexible tools are needed, such as the Geniom One.

12:30pm – Lunch and poster presentations

2:30pm – Targeting microRNAs in Cardiovascular Disease

Thomas Thum, Professor, University of Wurzburg

MicroRNAs negatively regulate gene expression by promoting mRNA degradation and inhibiting mRNA translation. In the past a variety of microRNAs that regulate cardiac development and function were identified. We now focus on therapeutic manipulation of microRNAs in cardiovascular disease

3:00pm – A Model System to Test the Effects of Design and Modification on siRNA Activity

Glen Reid, Head of RNAi Product Development, Genesis Research & Development Corporation Limited

3:30pm – Coffee & Networking in Main Exhibition Hall

4:30pm – Cooperative microRNA Targeting and Regulation

Prof. Pal Saterom, Norwegian University of Science and Technology

Multiple microRNA target sites within a 3′ UTR give synergistic down-regulation, but only if the distance between the target sites is in an optimal range. This result has implications for miRNA target prediction and siRNA design.

5:00pm – Large Scale Manufacture of RNA Duplexes

Kevin Fettes, Process Development Group Leader, Avecia Biotechnology

The practicalities of manufacturing RNA duplexes at a scale required to provide materials for clinical trials and commercial launch will be discussed using case studies.

5:30pm – Dual Role for Argonaute Proteins in MicroRNA Processing

Sven Diederichs, Research Fellow, German Cancer Research Center

Argonaute proteins, known effectors of RNA interference, are newly characterized as post-transcriptional regulators of mature miRNA expression. Ago2, the RNase in RNAi, also cleaves the pre-miRNA into a novel precursor and thus actively participates in microRNA processing.

6:00pm – Drinks reception – Sponsorship available, please contact [email protected]

Day 3

8:30am – SilenciX Cell Lines for Valuable Insights Into Cellular Pathways

Nadia Normand, Bioassay Manager, Tebu-Bio

9:00am – Identification of Chemical Modifications that Enhance siRNA Specificity Without Compromising siRNA Potency

Susan Magdaleno, Sr. Manager, Scientist RNAi Technologies, Applied Biosystems

We will describe the experimental studies and results leading to the discovery of a novel arrangment of chemical modifications in an siRNA duplex that significantly reduce off-target effects as measured by microarray and cell based assays.

9:30am – Enabling RNAi Therapeutics the Non-Viral Way

Prof. Andy Miller, Imperial College London

Synthetic, self-assembly ABCD nanoparticles represent a new nanotechnology concept for the delivery of therapeutic nucleic acids including siRNA and plasmid DNA (pDNA). These nanoparticles consist of AB core particles formed from nucleic acids (A-component) and cationic liposomes (B-component), which are then coated with variable amounts of a stealth/biocompatibility polymer (C-component) to provide stability in biological fluids and also with optional biological ligands (D-component) if required for active targeting. In this lecture, the development of purpose designed and assembled ABC nanoparticles will be described that enable successful delivery of siRNA to liver (for anti-HBV treatment), and delivery of pDNA to the lung opening up opportunities for lung therapies. We also describe a theranostic approach to siRNA delivery to tumour that opens up real promise for siRNA anti-cancer therapeutics in the future.

10:00am – RNA-Mediated Epigenetic Heredity : From a White-Tipped Tail to Familial Diseases

Prof. Minoo Rassoulzadegan, University of Nice

Consistent with converging evidence of a role of RNA in the establishment of epigenetic states and with the detection of RNA in human spermatozoa, our results reveal an unexpected mode of epigenetic inheritance by the zygotic transfer of RNA molecules.

10:30am – Coffee and networking in main exhibition hall

11:30am – siRNA and 3pRNA for Tumor Therapy

Prof. Gunther Hartmann, University of Bonn

The cytosolic helicase RIG-I detects RNA containing a triphosphate group at the 5´end (3pRNA) leading to the induction of an antiviral immune response upon exposure to negative strand RNA viruses. Here we combine gene silencing (siRNA) and 3pRNA for tumor therapy in the B16 melanoma model. We demonstrate that both functional activities contribute to antitumor activity in vivo.

12:00pm – Functionally-Tested siRNAs Deliver Potent and Extended Gene Silencing Using Low Concentrations

Eli Hefner, PhD, Bio-Rad

We will discuss dsRNA molecules that deliver effective gene silencing using low concentrations. They are functionally tested via RT-qPCR for ≥85% mRNA knockdown and demonstrate sustained silencing for up to 6-9 days.

12:30pm – Lunch and poster presentations

2:30pm – miCHIP and miQPCR, A Suit for Expression Profiling of Mature microRNA

Martina Muckenthaler, Head of Molecular Medicine, University of Heidelberg

3:00pm – RNAi Against a Moving Target: HIV-1

Prof. Ben Berkhout, University of Amsterdam

The exquisite sequence-specificity of the RNAi mechanism is a major advantage in therapeutic applications. However, it also creates new problems when targeting the rapidly evolving HIV-1. This virus will easily escape by selecting mutations in the targeted sequence. Thus, new escape-proof antiviral strategies are warranted.

15:30 – Coffee and networking

16:00 – A High-Throughput Bead-Based Flow Cytometric miRNA Assay, Based on the Luminex® Technology

Karel Fostier, Phd Student, Laboratory of Molecular and Cellular Therapy, Vrije Universiteit Brussel

MicroRNAs have emerged as a group of tiny non-coding regulatory molecules. To understand their role, a sensitive and specific profiling methodology is warranted. Here we present a high-throughput bead-based flow cytometric miRNA assay, based on the Luminex® technology.

16:30 – Close of Conference

Advances in qPCR Agenda

(correct at time of print)

8:55am – qPCR Diagnostics

Session Chair:

9:00am – Title to be confirmed

Prof. J.P. Allain, University College London

9:30am – Real-Time PCR Expression Profiling

Dr. Mikael Kubista, TATAA Biocentre

10:00am – RT-qPCR: Conjuring trick or gold standard?

Prof. Stephen Bustin, University of London

How valid is the description of RT-qPCR as the gold standard for the quantification of nucleic acids? There is an urgent need to acknowledge and address the problems associated with this technology. This presentation will outline the main issues and propose appropriate solutions.

10:30am – Coffee and networking in main exhibition hall

11:30am – RNAi Technology Trend Mapping Highlights

Gary Oosta, Chief Scientific Officer, Oval Ideas Inc

Mapping scientific and patent publications can reveal trends that can guide R&D decisions. Our map of the RNAi space is constructed by segmenting the collection of both scientific and patent documents into groups that describe research focus areas (activities), technology-stack layers (developments) and business or market risks and opportunities (interests). Visualizations across the segments reveal comparative trends and market insights. Analysis of trends of reveals opportunities for collaboration, research, licensing, or acquisition. A top-level summary dashboard provides guidance for R&D management decisions.

12:00pm – Gene Expression Profiling of Peripheral Blood of Patients with SCA1 and SCA3 Identifies Potential Disease Progression Markers

Michael Walter, Staff Scientist, University of Tübingen

12:30pm – Lunch and poster presentations

2:25pm – Assay QC

Session Chair:

2:30pm – Inhibition of the PCR Reaction

Prof. Jim Huggett, University College London

PCR inhibition can be highly reaction specific. At the extreme it is possible for one PCR reaction to be unaffected by potential inhibitors while another is totally inhibited.

3:00pm – Selection of Optimal Reference Genes for Normalisation

Inna Chervoneva, Assistant Professor, Thomas Jefferson University

3:30pm – Coffee and networking in main exhibition hall

4:30pm – Gene Expression Profiles of Antioxidative Enzymes and Related miRNAs as a Tool to Identify Metal-Specific Effects in A. Thaliana

Karen Smeets, Assistant, Hasslet University

5:00pm – Method for Extraction, Reverse Transcription and PCR Applicable to Single Cell Analysis

Linda Strömbom, Scientist, TATAA Biocenter

In this talk we present a novel streamlined approach for real-time PCR based RNA analysis of few cell samples of lower complexity. The procedure eliminates material losses and all target RNA molecules are made available for reverse transcription.

5:30pm – A New Normalisation Method for Murine Gene Eexpression Analysis

Nina Witt, PhD Student, University College London

We are using expressed short interspersed nuclear elements (SINE) for normalising RT-qPCR data and compare them with multiple reference genes.

6:00pm – Drinks reception – For Sponsorship please contact [email protected]

Thursday, 18 September

9:00am – Impact of q-RT-PCR Aalytical Methods on a Multi-Center Biomarker Trial in Colorectal Cancer

Terry Hyslop, Associate Professor, Thomas Jefferson University

9:30am – The Evolution of Relative RNA Quantification

Michael Pfaffl, Principal Scientist in Molecular Physiology, Technical University Munich

The focus of the talk is to describe the improvements in relative RNA quantification achieved during the last decade of quantitative RT-PCR. Accuracy of the relative quantification procedure can be increased, by implementing the PCR efficiency correction, multiple reference genes normalization, proper error propagation and valid statistical testing.

10:00am – Potential Dagnostic Application for Copy Number Detection Using Quantitative PCR with TaqMan Assays

Kelly Li, Senior Staff Scientist, Applied Biosystems

10:30am – Coffee and networking in main exhibition hall

11:30am – Detection of the JAK2 V617F Mutation in Myeloproliferative Disorders Using Novel Plexor LNA Primers

Curtis Hughesman, PhD Student, University of British Columbia

The design and application of unique Plexor LNA primers to detect the Janus Kinase 2 (JAK2) V617F mutation in clinical samples is presented. This newly developed real-time PCR assay has a significantly improved detection limit over probe based assays.

12:00pm – Applications of qPCR in DNA Methylation Analysis

James Flanagan, Research Fellow, University College London

Current techniques for DNA methylation analysis rely heavily on qPCR. This presentation will discuss a gene specific methylation protocol called Methylight and a genome-wide approach called methlyated DNA immunoprecipitation (MeDIP).

12:30pm – Lunch and poster presentations

2:30pm – Targeted Genome Sequencing

Prof. George Weinstock, Baylor College of Medicine

Next generation sequencing makes genome-wide projects now high-throughput and cost-effective. Many of these projects seek to target gene sets rather than the entire genome landscape. Traditional methods of PCR-based resequencing are being challenged by a new generation of “capture” methods where targeted regions are purified and sequenced on nexgen platforms. The current state and promise of some of these will be presented.

3:00pm – High-throughput Primer Design and in Silico Assay Validation

Jo Vandesompele, Professor, Ghent University Hospital

RTPrimerDB is a one-stop portal for experimentally validated qPCR assays, in silico validation of custom assays and now also for high-throughput primer design. The design pipeline is applied to a new class of non-coding RNA molecules.

3:30pm – Coffee and networking in main exhibition hall

4:00pm – Histone Modifications at RARE-driven Target Genes by all-/Trans/Retinoic Acid (ATRA) and TNFa

Marina Tshuikina, PhD Student, Uppsala University

4:30pm – Close of conference

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