Mangaluru, Dec 9: Centre for Systems Biology and Molecular Medicine (CSBMM), Yenepoya Research Centre (YRC) and department of community medicine, Yenepoya Medical College jointly organized an international symposium on ‘Innovative Approaches in Global Health: Linking Epidemiology and Biomarkers’ on December 9. The symposium was conducted under the aegis of London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM) grant on cardiovascular metabolomics, Biotechnology Skill Enhancement Programme (BiSEP) on MultiOmics Technology, Ministry of Science and Technology (KTech), State Government and National Facility for Metabolomics (BIC), department of biotechnology, Central Government. The symposium was conducted in a hybrid manner (online and offline) with more than 100 participants.
The inaugural function was presided by the honourable chancellor of Yenepoya (Deemed to be University), Dr Yenepoya Abdulla Kunhi, along with esteemed guests and distinguished speakers Prof George Davey Smith, University of Bristol, Prof Caroline Relton, LSHTM and Prof Sanjay Kinra, LSHTM. The ceremony began with a warm welcome address by Prof Rekha P D, director, YRC. Further, Prof T S Keshava Prasad, deputy director, CSBMM, YRC, gave an outlook of the symposium to the audience. The event’s presidential address was delivered by chancellor which set the perfect tone for the rest of the event emphasizing on the impact of research on global health. The formal inaugural function was concluded with a vote of thanks from Prof Akshaya K M, head of the department of community medicine, Yenepoya Medical College.
The scientific sessions included expert talks from esteemed guests. The first talk was by Prof Smith who spoke on the topic ‘Mendelian Randomization: Using genes to strengthen causal evidence regarding modifiable causes of disease'. He emphasized on the relationship between genetics and phenotypic causation, in making inferences on phenotypic causality both in evolutionary and epidemiological settings assuming gene-environmental equivalence. The next talk was delivered by Prof Relton who spoke about ‘Using epigenetic biomarkers to understand and predict disease’ focusing on epigenetic variation in the form of DNA methylation in human population for predicting disease prognosis. The final talk of the session was given by Prof Sanjay Kinra on ‘Artificial Intelligence and Global health: pathway to equality?’. He spoke about the widespread availability of low cost digital technologies and advances in artificial intelligence as a unique opportunity to address global health inequalities. He also provided examples of the current usage of these technologies, and a potential research agenda for addressing the implementation gap.
As a part of the symposium, participants presented their work through e-posters which were evaluated by four eminent judges. Due to fierce competition and highly talented and creative participation, 5 best posters were awarded cash prizes. The participants thoroughly enjoyed the symposium and were actively involved in scientific discussions with the expert speakers.
The success of this symposium underscores commitment to advancing research and fostering collaboration for the betterment of global health. The symposium sets the stage to look forward to future endeavours that continue to push the boundaries of knowledge and innovation in the field.