The International Symposium on Kallikreins and Kallikrein-related Peptidases (ISK) took place on September 25.-27. in Prague. Being not from the kallikrein-field, I learned a lot. E.g. I was not aware that KLK4 can activate plasminogen (a fact that might explain some of our early, inconsistent results where KLK4 occasionally seemed to weakly activate VEGF-C in cell culture). Not surprisingly, many participants were interested in our findings that KLK3/PSA can activate the growth factors VEGF-C and VEGF-D, both of which are implicated in cancer progression, notably in metastasis. They confirmed that there is not very much research on the effect of KLK3/PSA mutations on human fertility, but I am sure that someone is going to look at that.
Even though it is considered more prestigious to deliver a speech than to present a poster, I have to reconsider and perhaps will present next time a poster. What I would prefer most: talking AND presenting and poster. Why do so few conferences offer this possibility? What depth can you delve into if you have only 15 minutes on stage? Has the attention span of conference participants really decreased over the recent decades due to Facebook, Youtube, and Instagram? Maybe: https://www.telegraph.co.uk/science/2016/03/12/humans-have-shorter-attention-span-than-goldfish-thanks-to-smart/
The atmosphere at the conference was really friendly and cooperative, perhaps also owing to the relatively small number of participants. If we really should extend our excursion into the KLK-field, I have many experts to turn to for help. I also met some researchers from the Charles University of Prague, who are doing lymphatic research and it looks like we can help each other out with our specific experimental possibilities. All in all, a very successful trip. Excluding the Lufthansa flight back home, which arrived so late for transit in Frankfurt that I did not manage to do shopping there on my way back as I had originally planned (many shops in Germany do close at 5 pm).