The first virtual Keystone Symposia “Autophagy: Mechanisms and Disease” was celebrated on October 5-8. Organized by Dr. Patricia Boya (Margarita Salas Center for Biological Research, CIB-CSIC), together with Felix Randow (MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology) and Masaaki Komatsu (Juntendo University School of Medicine), the symposia received more than 440 registrations from 30 countries, being the third in number of different countries from the 11 virtual events held by the Keystone organization.
The main topics discussed through the meeting were the new insights into the molecular regulation of autophagy, both selective and non-canonical autophagy, autophagy and organelle crosstalk as well as the relationship between autophagy and disease, focusing on new therapeutic opportunities. The invited speakers included the top experts on the field and this together with the high amount of unpublished data presented made this conference one of the most relevant autophagy events of the year.
Additionally, a mini-symposium was included honoring Dr. Beth Levine, who has recently passed away. She was a pioneer in the field of modern mammalian autophagy -discoverer of Beclin1, a master regulator of autophagy- and on the implications of autophagy in physiological and pathological conditions, from exercise to aging and cancer to infectious diseases. This session was hosted by Skip Virgin, Ana Maria Cuervo, Malene Hansen and the members of Levine’s Lab, Xiaonan Dong, Yang Liu, and Salwa Sebti.
The event counted on the participation of many attendees from Spain, with two invited short talks and many posters. Moreover, the online event summed up 82 unique chats where 213 questions were delivered during the talks, and more than 526 chats during poster sessions. 1:1 Connect sessions were celebrated to chat with speakers and journal editors as well as interesting roundtable events focused on mentoring and advice as well as an editor session which counted with the presence of Stella Hurtley (Science), Sadaf Shadan (Nature), Elisabetta Argenzio (EMBO Journal), and Petra Gross (Journal of Cell Science).