The Karl Lechtreck Lab, who study ciliopathies, which are rare diseases and disorders related to cilia, attended the 2019 Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology this past August, and had a chance to see the impact of their work firsthand.
Due to their wide distribution, a number of diseases and disorders are caused by cilia dysfunction. One such disease is Bardet Biedl Syndrome, which causes loss of vision during childhood and puberty, obesity, kidney anomalies, and polydactyly. BBS is considered a rare condition, and is often not pursued by large companies. Most work in this field is done in university laboratories. Many scientists who study the biology of rare diseases may not get the chance to meet a patient affected by those diseases. The FASEB conference brought together scientists, physician scientists, BBS patients, and concluded with special talks attended by the patients and their families.
FASEB 2019, conference on the biology of cilia and flagella, was co-organized by Dr. Karl Lechtreck, Associate Professor of Cellular Biology, and supported in part by the UGA Office of Research.
UGA postdoctoral research associate, Peiwei Liu, won the first place award for oral presentations from Daniel Grimes, assistant professor at the University of Oregon. UGA PhD candidate, Jenna Wingfield, won the first place award for poster presentations. UGA MS student, Kewei Yu, won the third place award for poster presentations.