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Venice: 5th Mitocardia meeting

The Mitocardia partner meeting was hosted by our Italian Colleagues from the University of Padua and held at the Istituto Veneto di Scienze, Lettere ed Arti, in the historic Palazzo Loredan, in Campo Santo Stefano, Venice. The sense of history and scientific achievement associated with this location made for a truly remarkable and inspiring setting for a scientific meeting. We would like to thank all our hosts for the opportunity to meet here.

We enjoyed another productive meeting with a few key highlights:

We welcomed a new Principle Investigator to the Mitocardia Team, Professor György Hajnoczky from Thomas Jefferson University. Professor Hajnoczky is a mitochondria expert whose research interests include the biology of mitochondrial calcium homeostasis. His addition to the group will expand our ability to explore the role of mitochondrial calcium uptake on the PTP.

Work from within the group exploring the role of the ATP synthase and ANT family of proteins in PTP, as well as emerging trends in the scientific literature has led the Mitocardia group to agree that there are likely multiple protein species underlying PTP biology. This may be a significant advancement in the field as it may clear a major roadblock in understanding the full identity of the PTP. We have resolved to test this paradigm as the group proceeds.

We have also resolved to increase our exploration of the role of mitochondrial calcium uptake and homeostasis in PTP. Unlike the PTP itself, the identity of the mitochondrial calcium uniporter (MCU) and its components are increasingly well understood. Given the known role for mitochondrial calcium and MCU in PTP activation, we believe the better understanding the biology of MCU may provide novel insight into cardiovascular necrotic cell death and potential therapeutic targets. The Mitocardia team plans to expand this facet of our research.

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