The 59th ICBL conference was opened on Sept 4 by an insightful Laurens Van Deenen award lecture by Rosalind Coleman, University of North Carolina, on the topic ’Compartmentalization of fatty acid and lipid metabolism pathways’, in the historical setting of the large auditorium of Helsinki Congress Paasitorni, built in 1908. The 170 participants thereafter gathered at the welcome reception in the modern Circus conference space at the bottom floor of the venue.
On Sept 5 the programme was packed with scientific substance, with three lecture sessions and a 2-hour poster session I, from 8.30 a.m. till 7.50 p.m.
Thursday Sept 6 was a day with only one lecture session, the rest of the day being devoted to social programme. In a warm, sunny weather, the delegates were transported by two charter boats the the Suomenlinna sea fortress, at which guided tours to the history of this UNESCO world heritage site took place. Following afternoon coffee, the participants returned to mainland Helsinki with public transport ferries and walked back to their hotels through the monumental center of Helsinki dating back to the 1820s and 1830s.
The traditional conference dinner on Sept 6 was held at Restaurant Sea Pavillon floating on the Töölö bay in the immediate vicinity of the venue. The event was spiced by the warm spirit and friendship characteristic of ICBL throughout the years. The weather being excellent, we enjoyed a beautiful sunset through the glass walls of Sea Pavillon.
The programme on Sept 7 comprised two excellent lecture sessions and poster session II. The conference was finished by presentation of ICBL 2019, Tokyo, by Makoto Arita, and the awards. Vesa Olkkonen delivered the young investigator awards for the best oral (Maija Ruuth, Wihuri Research Institute, Helsinki) and poster (Nikolas Giannakis, Univ. of Debrecen, Hungary) presentations. Markus Wenk thereafter delivered the J. Lipid Res. Junior investigator award to Bruno Mesmin (Univ. of Nice Sophia Antipolis, France). Warmest congratulations to the winners!
See you next year (June 17-21, 2019) in Tokyo!