PROJECT SUMMARY Carotenoids are C40 isoprenoid pigments synthesized by plants and microorganisms with essential photoreception and photoprotection roles in photosynthesis. Plant apocarotenoids - derived from cleavage of carotenoids ? are also important regulators of development and physiological responses. Animals absorb carotenoids from the diet and use them for pigmentation, protection from oxidative stress and as vitamin A precursors upon conversion into retinoids (vitamin A and its derivatives). In addition, apocarotenoids possess potent biological activities in mammals, functioning as nuclear receptor ligands that regulate numerous pathways of cell signaling. Thus, dietary carotenoids impact on human health and disease development with multiple mechanisms, throughout the life cycle. Dietary carotenoids ? lutein, in particular - are emerging as important modulators of infant and child visual and cognitive development. As precursors of vitamin A, carotenoids - mainly beta-carotene - are also important contributors to human embryonic development and growth. A major effort in carotenoid research has focused on the biofortification of staple crops, including rice, with provitamin A carotenoids, such as beta-carotene, for global prevention of VAD which remains an overwhelming public health issue, affecting millions of pregnant women and children in over half of all countries worldwide. Dietary carotenoid consumption has long been associated with decreased risk of a variety of human chronic diseases, such as cancer and more recently neurodegenerative diseases. A vibrant community of researchers has advanced our knowledge on the above research areas in recent years. Comparative research between plants and animals has revealed an impressive conservation of key enzymes that catalyze the various transformations of carotenoids and apocarotenoids. The carotenoid Gordon Conference is the only meeting that addresses the full spectrum of carotenoid research ?from ?nature to bedside?. The main objectives of the 2018 edition are: (1) To further promote the integration of the different research fields, fostering interdisciplinarity and transfer of research methods between different experimental systems. Accordingly, the majority of the sessions will be organized to include speakers from different fields (microbial/plant biology and biomedical research). (2) To promote integration of early career scientists into the community, by reserving 30- 40% of the speaker slots to early career scientists and 12 ?poster preview? talks, selected from poster presentations. The formal scientific program, limited attendance and organized but informal opportunities for interaction will make this meeting a ?must go? conference, promoting deeper understanding of the biosynthesis and physiological roles of carotenoids in living organisms and human health.
|Effective start/end date||3/17/18 → 7/31/18|
- National Institutes of Health: $6,000.00