International partnership to bring global cell and gene therapy leaders to Melbourne

One of the world’s largest scientific conferences in cell, gene and regenerative medicine is on its way to Melbourne to exchange knowledge and share best practice.

Taking place from May 29 to June 1, 2019 at the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre (MCEC), International Society for Cell and Gene Therapy (ISCT) 2019 Annual Scientific Meeting will host the full spectrum of global cell and gene therapy and regenerative medicine professionals from over 27 countries.

The effort to bring this major event to Melbourne was led by the Melbourne Convention Bureau (MCB), supported by the Victorian government and the City of Melbourne.

Outgoing MCB chief executive Karen Bolinger said Melbourne has a proven track record in hosting important medical and scientific meetings, with the winning bid a result of the bureau’s ‘Team Melbourne’ philosophy.

“Unique to our bid process is the collaboration and unified approach between the bureau, government, associations and industry partners,” she said.

“As a result of this collaboration, we were able to deliver a bid proposition which aligned to the International Society for Cell and Gene Therapy’s global objectives.

“This conference is a platform for leading experts to advance the field and provides the opportunity for Victoria to strengthen ties with international networks, showcase our local talent in the sector and build new research links.

“Those attending will experience first-hand why Melbourne is one of the world’s most successful destinations for association health and medical conferences.”

John Rasko, president of the ISCT and head of the gene and stem cell therapy program at the University of Sydney, said: “It’s no coincidence that one of the most influential cell and gene therapy conferences is being held in one of the world’s most productive areas for cell and gene therapy research and innovation.

“This conference is a rare chance to connect with so many great people from all areas of cell and gene therapy.”

Minister for Jobs, Innovation and Trade Martin Pakula said it was fitting that Melbourne had been chosen as the host city for the ISCT 2019 Annual Scientific Meeting.

“Melbourne is Australia’s medtech and biotech hub, and this conference offers a fantastic opportunity for local industry to collaborate with world-leaders in cell and gene therapy,” he said.

“The conference is a fantastic addition to Melbourne’s business events calendar and I’m proud that our government is supporting the 2019 meeting.”

The conference will cover the full breadth and depth of cell and gene therapy topics, providing state-of-the-art plenary sessions in cell and gene therapy clinical translation and regenerative medicine disease areas.

Notable speakers include industry leaders such as Australian expats Cameron Turtle (US) and Saar Gil (US), as well as regional authorities Jun Takahashi (Japan), Weidong Han (China) and Masayo Takahashi (Japan).