{ C O N T E N T S }
volume 5, issue 3

President’s Letter

ISMB 2002 Overview

Overton Prize

New Board Members

2003 ISCB Membership Registration Now Open

ISCB Members’ Meeting

Application Deadline to Host ISMB 2004 or 2005

ISMB Goes Down Under

SGI Awards Best Paper and Best Poster Awards at ISMB 2002

CAPRI and ECCB Travel Fellowship Recipients

Bourne Receives Sun Convergence Lifetime Achievement Award

McKay: Executive Officer

Events and Opportunities

Newsletter Homepage

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ISMB 2003: G’day from Down Under!

Brisbane’s Southbank Beach—Courtesy of Brisbane Tourism ©

Judging from the reception at the ISMB 2003 display booth in Edmonton, people had better start polishing those papers and consulting the better half on travel plans! To give delegates a taste of Australia, the ISMB 2003 Brisbane organizers brought along 1000 stuffed koalas—almost all of which had been adopted enmasse by the end of the first day. Why settle for the toy when one may experience the ridgy-didge (Aussie slang for original/genuine)? ISMB 2003 will be the perfect opportunity to combine serious science with a bit of relaxation with family or colleagues.

For biologists, Australia is nirvana—recognized internationally as one of only twelve mega-biodiverse countries (plenty of which is on display around Brisbane). From the local committee’s perspective, one of the key long-term benefits of bioinformatics in Queensland will be to manage and explore data from molecular bioprospecting. The co-host for ISMB 2003, the Institute for Molecular Bioscience at the University of Queensland, has recently spun-off several companies with both in vitro and in silico platform technologies that link natural products (such as those in cone-shell snail venom) to pharmaceutical development. In silico analysis is a lot safer and saner than chasing new antibiotics in reptile blood, but for the vicarious crocodile hunters, Steve Irwin’s Australia Zoo is just an hour’s drive north. The local organizing team has also heard rumors from certain SIG groups of a field trip in “Mining marine biodata—an applied approach” out on the Great Barrier Reef.

Queensland is known as the “Sunshine State” for good reason. Brisbane’s winter (the northern-hemisphere summer) is the sunniest time of all. ISMB 2003 organizers found arrival in the Alberta “summer” rather chillier than the accustomed wintertime in the Brisbane subtropics (where an exceptionally cold night might drop to 7C/45F). Just across the road from the convention centre where ISMB 2003 will be held is South Bank Beach (see picture) with nearby child-minding facilities. South Bank was built on the 1988 World Expo site and is host to many restaurants, pubs and alfresco cafes (a la Tivoli Gardens in Copenhagen). Despite the common joke of the Aussie seven-course lunch (meat-pie and six-pack of beer), Brisbane is a sophisticated cosmopolitan city, noted for its fusion cooking style that combines Western cuisine with Eastern and local ingredients.

ISMB gets bigger and better every year, and the ISMB 2003 organizers have every intention of ensuring that the trend continues. Organizers are already engaging the ISCB’s regional affiliates, and delegates may look forward to productive interactions with the rapidly growing bioinformatics communities in Japan, Korea, China and elsewhere in Southeast Asia. Parallel sessions will be introduced, in a limited way, for the first time. Gene Myers and his Program Committee expect to see high-quality presentations in diverse areas. The Call for Papers will be open at the website (www.iscb.org/ismb2003) by early October. We look forward to your papers, and to greeting you in Brisbane next year!

ISMB 2003 Key Dates
December 3, 2002 - Tutorial Proposals Due
January 2, 2003 - Close Paper Submission
March 3, 2003 - Registration Opens
April 24, 2003 - Close Poster Submission