April 13, 2016
(Courtesy UMass Amherst News Office)
The University of Massachusetts Amherst will once again host the Dose-Response Society’s international conference, this year on April 19-20 at the Campus Center, with the theme “Preconditioning: adaptive responses in biology in medicine.”
Conference directors Edward Calabrese, Professor of Environmental Health Sciences, and Paul Kostecki, Professor Emeritus, expect the 15th annual gathering to attract more than 100 scientists from around the world who study the potential for using low-dose exposure to chemicals and radiation to build biological shields against disease and injury, a phenomenon known as hormesis.
They write, “A growing number of scientists, including toxicologists, pharmacologists, biostatisticians, epidemiologists, occupational and environmental medical researchers and others have begun to display considerable interest in the topic of hormesis, a dose-response phenomenon characterized by a low dose stimulation and a high dose inhibition. While there are many professional societies that have a general interest in dose response relationships, none explicitly is devoted to the topic of understanding the nature of the dose response in general and hormesis in particular.”
The two-day conference will feature presentations on hormesis and preconditioning and such potential applications as Alzheimer’s disease, dementia, Parkinson’s disease, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, concussion, traumatic brain injury, stroke, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, glaucoma, stem cell and transplantation therapy, wound healing, improving surgical outcomes and enhancing human performance.
Internationally recognized conference speakers and panel moderators include Jeffrey Gidday of Louisiana State University, New Orleans; Thomas Johnson of the University of Colorado Boulder; George Perdrizet of the University of California, San Diego; Jaap Hanekamp of the University College Roosevelt, The Netherlands; James Giordano of Georgetown University; Soumen Roy of the U.S. National Cancer Institute; Colin Seymour of McMaster University, Ontario, and Paul Garcia of Emory University.
Because international interest in hormesis is spread across a broad variety of disciplines, Calabrese and Kostecki point out, it is difficult to integrate assessment of the dose response in general and hormesis in particular. To address this, they formed the Dose-Response Society in 2005 at UMass Amherst’s School of Public Health and Health Sciences to provide intellectual and research leadership on hormesis. The society strongly encourages hormesis research in diverse fields including toxicology, risk assessment, risk communication, medicine, biomedical research and other biological disciplines.