International Conference Brings Scientific Minds Together in Winston-Salem

June 25, 2010

            WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. – An international conference attended by more than 70 of the world’s leading experts and investigators in the field of Ephs and ephrins was held locally this week and hosted by Waldemar Debinski, M.D., Ph.D., director of the Brain Tumor Center of Excellence at Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center.

            The bi-annual conference focused on the biggest known family of protein tyrosine kinase proteins, termed Ephs and ephrins, which are involved in various processes of brain development and blood vessel organization.  They significantly contribute to tumor progression and maintenance in adult life, but Debinski and his colleagues believe that by molecularly targeting Ephs and ephrins, they will be able to bring novel approaches to cancer therapy, including brain tumors.

            “Ephs and ephrins are also of paramount importance in development, especially of the central nervous system, and pathophysiology/biology of multiple human disorders,” Debinski said. “Our meeting is unique in that it brings cancer researchers together with investigators studying development or other physiological processes.  I believe this provides a fertile ground for learning from one another in order to resolve basic problems and to explore potential novel medical interventions targeting Ephs and ephrins.”

            The conference is grant supported by the National Institute of Cancer and National Institutes of Health, in conjunction with the Brain Tumor Center of Excellence at Wake Forest Baptist.

Media Relations

Bonnie Davis:, 336-713-1597