As the COVID-19 pandemic threw every scientist’s conference diary into disarray, ARMI, Monash University and Osaka University were undeterred and forged ahead to hold the 2nd Monash University – Osaka University Symposium on Advanced Biomedical Science virtually last month. While an online event was markedly different from the inaugural meeting in Osaka last year, the opportunity to discuss the progress of our projects with peers was met with gusto.
“We were determined to meet with our colleagues in Osaka,” explained Associate Professor Mikaël Martino. “Conferences are a key pillar in research, and with conference technology adapting to our new COVID environment, we knew that we could organise a virtual event.”
“Conferences are a key pillar in research, and with conference technology adapting to our new COVID environment, we knew that we could organise a virtual event.”
The symposium opened with welcomes from ARMI Director Professor Peter Currie, accompanied by words from Consul-General and Senior Trade Commissioner David Lawson and Consul-General Kazuyoshi Matsunaga. These addresses highlighted the ongoing sister city relationship between the cities of Melbourne and Osaka more generally, a relationship that was established over 30 years ago.
Then, we heard from the scientists and the progress of their collaborative projects, covering topics ranging from cutting edge imaging techniques to heart regeneration to the role of the microenvironment in regulating tissue regeneration. From ARMI, we heard from Mikaël, Dr Jennifer Zenker and Dr Gonzalo del Monte-Nieto.
Following these updates, there were robust discussions about academia more broadly. Professor Ross Coppel, the Deputy Dean and Director of Research in the Faculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences at Monash University, talked about implementing joint research projects across the two universities and how to foster exchanges amongst the student cohort. Professor Eiichi Morii, from the Graduate School of Medicine at Osaka University, discussed how to boost international academic reputation and the implementation of research results in the world. The symposium ended with a roundtable, exploring the future of biomedical research and the systems that need to be in place to achieve our goals in creating impact in the lives of patients.
This symposium further galvanised the growing relationship between ARMI, Monash University and Osaka University. It demonstrated why these institutes and their brilliant scientists are leaders in tissue regeneration and biomedical engineering.
“Building collaborations, especially global ones, are so critical in biomedical research and translational medicine…It is so invaluable to discovery, and we are excited to have Osaka University as one of our partners.”
“Building collaborations, especially global ones, are so critical in biomedical research and translational medicine. There’s the exchange of new thinking and different approaches, and even the sharing of resources, from biomaterials to biologics and cells. It is so invaluable to discovery, and we are excited to have Osaka University as one of our partners,” said Mikaël.
Thank you to all the attendees, speakers and organisers. We look forward to meeting again next year but in person!