Table of Contents  
Year : 2015  |  Volume : 17  |  Issue : 5  |  Page : 691-692

Epididymal research one generation on

1 Institute of Biochemistry and Cell Biology, Shanghai Institutes for Biological Sciences, Shanghai, China
2 Tuen Mun, NT, Hong Kong SAR, China

Date of Web Publication24-Jul-2015

Correspondence Address:
Trevor G Cooper
Tuen Mun, NT, Hong Kong SAR
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/1008-682X.160264

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How to cite this article:
Zhang Y, Cooper TG. Epididymal research one generation on. Asian J Androl 2015;17:691-2

How to cite this URL:
Zhang Y, Cooper TG. Epididymal research one generation on. Asian J Androl [serial online] 2015 [cited 2022 Dec 4];17:691-2. Available from:

Foreword to the 6th International Conference on the Epididymis, Shanghai special issue in the Asian Journal of Andrology.

The Sixth International Conference on the Epididymis (Epididymis VI: Networks in the Epididymis, Basic and Clinical Research) was held between October 31 and November 3 2014 in Shanghai, China.

This was the second Chinese venue for this meeting, following the first meeting concentrating solely on the Epididymis (retrospectively named Epid I) in Hong Kong in 1992. Between these two have been held 4-yearly meetings in Newcastle, Australia in 1998 (Epid II); in Charlottesville, Virginia, USA in 2002 (Epid III); in Chatel-Guyon, France in 2006 (Epid IV) and in Sañ Paulo, Brazil in 2010 (Epid V). Some of the senior participants had also been present at forerunner meetings: the First Annual Meeting of the Society for the Study of Reproduction in the USA in 1968, which featured a session "From Caput to Cauda" chaired by JM Bedford with MC Orgebin-Crist as speaker, and The Epididymis and Male Fertility in Germany in 1985, when talks were given by JM Bedford and TG Cooper. [1]

The venue for Epid IV was the lecture hall of the Shanghai Institute of Biochemistry and Cell Biology (SIBS) of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS), close to the participants' accommodation, either adjacent to the SIBS campus (Hope Hotel) or a short walk away (Pine City Hotel). Epid VI received 99 online registrations, from 15 countries, of which 48% were from China. In addition to the registered participants, there were 30-40 local attendees as audience per day.

The Local Organizing Committee comprised (in alphabetical order): Degui Chen (SIBS, CAS), Xuefeng Huang (First Affiliated Hospital of Wenzhou Medical College), Hongjun Li (Peking Union Medical College), Zheng Li (Renji Hospital, Shanghai Jaio Tong University School of Medicine), Zhongdon Qiao (Shanghai Jiao Tong University), Jian Wang (Shanghai Institute of Planned Parenthood Research), Hua Xu (SIBS, CAS), Wenjuan Zhang (SIBS, CAS), Qinzhu Zheng (Asian Journal of Andrology).

The conference was sponsored by four foreign societies; the American Society of Andrology (USA), the Society for Reproduction and Fertility (UK), the Society for Reproductive Biology (Australia), and the Society for the Study of Reproduction (USA); by four units from the Chinese Academy of Sciences; headquarters of CAS, Shanghai Institute for Biological Sciences, State Key Laboratory of Molecular Biology, Shanghai Institute of Biochemistry and Cell Biology, School of Life Science and Technology, Shanghai Tech University; by six companies, Thermofisher, Shanghai Bio-Chain Co., Ltd., Illumina China, Gene Company Limited, Shanghai Generay Biotech Co., Ltd., and Guangzhou Kangrun Biotech Co., Ltd.; and by the National Natural Science Foundation of China, Shanghai Renji Hospital, Shanghai Research Center for Model Organisms.

The aim of the congress was to provide orientation for future epididymal research, to attract people to join together to make great contributions on some not only important, but also clinically needed problems, by multidisciplinary approaches and new technologies.

The meeting consisted of eight sessions before a final audience-led session on challenges to future epididymal research. In these sessions were 41 talks, including those from 25 invited speakers (36% from the USA) and 16 oral presentations selected from submitted abstracts (47% from China) and given by either students or those lab leaders. There were 29 posters, available for viewing throughout the meeting at morning tea and afternoon coffee breaks.

Epididymis VI started with an introductory lectures (Session I) given by three retired epididymal researchers: Michael J Bedford, Trevor G Cooper and Terry T Turner, who looked back at their own or others' work to reveal unresolved issues, to examine defining moments in a scientist's career and to discuss where the future of epididymal research may lie.

Session II covered The Development of the Epididymis and Dysgenesis (Barry T Hinton, Pablo E Visconti, Thomas Carroll) and Session III Epididymal Epithelial Cell Biology, Fluid Formation and Composition (Sylvie Breton, Robert Sullivan, Jianyuan Li [presented by Xin Liu]).

Session IV, The roles of the Epididymis in Sperm Maturation, Protection, and Storage, was large enough to include three sessions: (I) with Julia R Dorin, Hsiao Chang Chen, Petra Sipilä, (II) with Patricia A DeLeon, Maria Christina Avellar, Patricia Cuasnicú, and (III) with Joël R Drevet, Mark Baker, Jean-Louis Dacheux.

Session V dealt with Regulatory Mechanisms of Temporal and Special Gene Expression in the Epididymis (Bernard Robaire, Olli A Jänne, Clemence Belleannee), Session VI with Epididymal Diseases (Andreas Meinhardt, Robert E Brannigen, Zheng Li) and Session VII with a Variety of Research Approaches to the Epididymis (Xingxu Huang, Winnie WC Shum, Minjie Lin, Ralf Middendorf, Emily R Rose).

Session VIII was for the Young Investigators' presentations (Zhen Li, Erick JR Silva, Chen Chu, Angelika Stammler, Shuanggang Hu, Camilla M Ribeiro, Binfang Xu, Chunhua Tang, Ida Björkgren, Aki Murashima, Jiehong Huang).

Session IX was an unrehearsed spontaneous Panel Discussion of topics allocated on the day to the audience divided into a Basic and Clinical Research panel and a Young Investigator panel.

We are grateful that all but two of the presenters approached at the meeting agreed at short notice to produce a chapter of their work for this Special Issue of the Asian Journal of Andrology on Epididymis VI, although subsequently withdrew because of time restraints.

  References Top

Cooper TG, Waites GM, Nieschlag E. The epididymis and male fertility. A symposium report. Int J Androl 1986; 9: 81-90.  Back to cited text no. 1


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