HomeVolume Fall 2008

Division of Comparative Endocrinology (DCE): Fall 2008 Newsletter

In this newsletter:

Message from the Chair

Stacia Sower

We are looking forward to seeing you in Boston this January for a very exciting meeting. As Stephan Schoech, our new Program Officer, has informed us, we have a record number of abstracts for this meeting. This year we are pleased to announce that Professor Peter J. Sharp, PhD, FRSE, Genetics and Genomics Division, The Roslin Institute and Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies, University of Edinburgh, Scotland, UK will be presenting the Howard Bern Lecture. The title of his presentation will be "Vertebrate Photoperiodic Signaling." This year we implemented a nominating committee for the Howard Bern Lecture. I would like to thank those who served on this committee. We had a number of outstanding nominations.

Hamid Habibi, John Chang and Alice Hontela hosted the International Symposium on Fish Endocrinology at the University of Calgary, June 22-27, 2008. There were over 300 participants. Drs. Ed Donaldson, Geoff Eales, Tetsuya Hirano, Sandy Scott, and Zvi Yaron each received a Lifetime Achievement Award in recognition of his/her significant contribution in the area of Fish Endocrinology.

The 9th International Symposium of Avian Endocrinology was held in the historic town of Leuven, Belgium, 11-15 July 2008. Professors Veerle Darras, Eddy Decuypere, and Johan Buyse hosted approximately 200 of the world's avian endocrinologists at this quadrennial meeting.

Now that you have submitted your abstracts, on behalf of the DCE officers, we would like to encourage everyone to submit one paragraph and diagram/schematic or photo for the DCE Researchers Database. We are lagging behind other divisions. These are the photos you see on the upper left panel of the SICB web site and they change each time the screen is refreshed.

Your elected representatives, Stephan Schoech and Cathy Propper have been doing an outstanding job getting us ready for Boston. We have an exciting program planned and I hope will see you at the DCE business meeting and DCE social in Boston. In the meantime, be sure to send me your thoughts and concerns about any aspect of DCE: sasower@unh.edu.

Message from the Program Officer

Stephan Schoech

As you all likely know, abstract submission for the January 2009 meeting closed on 9 September after yet another hurricane-necessitated extension of the deadline. Regardless, Sue Burk informs me that a record number of abstracts have been submitted for the upcoming Boston meeting! The impressive total of 1,366 greatly surpasses the previous high (at the very least for the years since Burk Inc. has been managing SICB meetings and likely for all time). For those interested, here are the abstract totals for the past seven years - 2002: 916 Anaheim; 2003: 780 Toronto; 2004: 1,103 New Orleans; 2005: 1,001 San Diego; 2006: 1,034 Orlando; 2007: 1,082 Phoenix; 2008 967 San Antonio. Note that totals include abstracts for symposia, oral, and poster presentations.

How many of the abstracts that have been submitted are from members of DCE remains to be seen, but DCE will sponsor seven oral sessions, co-sponsor four of the ten symposia, and be well represented at the poster sessions: visit the society meeting page for details http://www.sicb.org/meetings/2009/.

At the recent (26 - 28 September) meeting of Program Officers to arrange the schedule for the upcoming meeting, I became aware that none of the ten symposia to be presented at the 2010 meeting in Seattle are sponsored by our division! I strongly encourage any of you that might have a symposium that you've been thinking of for a future meeting to consider using the 'late breaking symposium' mechanism to remedy this anomaly. While no advance guarantee can be made, I can assure you that an appropriate proposal would be favorably considered. As our division has monies that are dedicated to support symposia and none of these funds are currently allocated, divisional support would be available.

Also at the 2009 meeting website is information about funding for student support for meeting attendance. Application deadlines for student support will have passed by the time this newsletter is published, but take note of this for future meetings. As you all know SICB is a very student friendly organization that strives to support graduate and undergraduate students however possible.

Judges Needed

Speaking of students, approximately 40 are participating in the Best Student Paper program in Boston (total for both oral and poster presentations). Dr. Ignacio Moore of Virginia Tech has been kind enough to step forward and will serve as the Chair of the DCE Student Award Committee. To those of you who are able, I strongly encourage you to volunteer as judges to help us award student presentations. As one who has served as a judge I can assure you that the burden is not great, especially if it is shared appropriately, and one gets the opportunity to see some great talks and posters that otherwise could be missed. Please contact Ignacio at itmoore@vt.edu.

I hope all have had an enjoyable and productive summer and I look forward to seeing you all in Boston. While a bit cool in January, the lobster bisque, chowder, adult beverages, and camaraderie assure a warm meeting.

Message from the Secretary

Catherine Propper (Catherine.Propper@nau.edu)

We are looking forward to our upcoming conference in Boston. Please make sure to attend the DCE business meeting as we will be discussing some changes to the bylaws that will be voted on in the Spring election.

Also, we are in another DCE election round for both the Chair and the Secretary positions and will be recruiting members for the nomination committee. If you are interested in serving on this committee please let our divisional chair, Stacia Sower, know.

We will be trying something new for the meeting next year (2010) in Seattle. The Western Regional Conference on Comparative Endocrinology (WRCCE) will be co-meeting with DCE at the SICB conference. Therefore, WRCCE will not have a Spring meeting in 2009. I wish to encourage everyone who usually participates in the WRCCE to come to Seattle and make our conference a wonderful opportunity for collaboration and discussion.

There are a couple of other meetings of interest to DCE membership:

The Endocrine Society meeting June 10-13, 2009 in Washington, D.C.

The Society for the Study of Reproduction: 18-22 July 2009 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

If you have any information/announcements you would like to see posted in the Spring, 2009 Newsletter, please let me know, and I will work with secretary-elect Mary Mendonça to get it posted it there. If you have any information that needs to go out quickly to the DCE membership, also send it to me.

Message from the Graduate Student and Post-doc Representative

Alexandra M. Class (classam@vt.edu)

Hope all DCE graduate students and postdocs are having an enjoyable and productive fall! The 2009 Boston Meeting is just around the corner and is full of opportunities to gain knowledge, mingle with the leaders in your field, and figure out what to go after next. I encourage you to attend the SICB and DCE business meetings so you are aware of what makes SICB tick and how you can add to SICB.

Be sure to attend the Grad Student/ Postdocs Welcome Orientation at 5:30 p.m., January 3, if you are new to SICB, and/or want to maximize your conference experience. There are also many symposia of particular interest to DCE members including: "Hormonal Regulation of Whole-Animal Performance: Implications for Selection,""Psychoneuroimmunology Meets Integrative Biology," "Evolution of Mechanisms Controlling Timing of Breeding in Animals," and "Cell-Cell Signaling Drives the Evolution of Complex Traits." Also of interest to soon-to-be graduated grad students and postdocs is the Grad student/Postdoc workshop, "How to Find a Postdoc Position; How to Apply For an Academic Job." This workshop will include a panel with faculty with experience on job search committees and faculty new-hires. Finally, celebrate your conference by attending the Society-wide Student/Postdoc Social, 8-9:30pm, January 6.

For student support for SICB see the Charlotte Mangum Student Support Program: http://www.sicb.org/meetings/2009/studentsupport.php3.

Upcoming grant and fellowship deadlines for students and postdocs:

  • DCE gives two "Best Student Paper" awards/ meeting (best oral/ poster presentations). The work must be original and be carried out principally by the student presenting the paper/ poster. In any year, a student can enter either the oral or the poster competition.

-Links to information on larger fellowships like the Graduate Research Fellowship or Doctoral Dissertation Improvement Grant, as well as specialized programs including integrative education and study abroad for doctoral students. Deadlines ~ early-mid Nov. for graduate fellowships.

Link to officer list on DCE page