A sharing of minds

Breakthrough findings on the biological functions and translational importance of plasminogen activation and extracellular proteolysis – key molecules and chemical pathways in a vast number of biological processes – were presented at the recent Plasminogen Activation and Extracellular Proteolysis Gordon Research Seminar.

Held in Ventura, California, the Seminar was co-chaired by Dr Amelia Tomkins (Thrombosis Group, HRI) and Dr Marta Kubala (Children’s Hospital Los Angeles). Dr Tomkins also presented a poster at the Gordon Research Conference of the same theme.

The Seminar was an international affair, with 36 participants from research groups from around the world, and funded by organisations including HRI. A highlight of the weekend was a panel discussion with outstanding scientists and experts on the translation of bench-to-bedside research. “It was enlightening to meet with and hear from leading researchers in the fields of stroke and thrombosis,” Dr Tomkins reports.

Seminar chairs and panel speakers (L-R): Prof Paul Declerck (KU Leuven, Belgium); Dr Marta Kubala (Children’s Hospital Los Angeles); Prof Valerie Weaver (UCSF); Dr Martin Broome (Children’s Hospital Los Angeles); Dr Stephen Fiacco (EvoRx Technologies); Dr Amelia Tomkins (HRI, Australia)

Plasminogen activation and extracellular proteolysis play integral roles in a vast number of biological processes, including cardiovascular and renal function, vascular biology, neurobiology, neurodegeneration, cell death, pregnancy, inflammation, infection, tissue homeostasis and regeneration, tumour biology, and angiogenesis.

Dr Amelia Tomkins completed her PhD at the University of Newcastle, Australia with the Translational Stroke Research Group and joined the Thrombosis Group at HRI in 2015, where she is now a postdoctoral scientist. Her key research interests are in acute stroke therapy, exploring potential new clot-busting options and investigating blood flow reductions in the brain after stroke.

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