Summer School on Innovative Approaches in Science

The virtual Summer School on Innovative Approaches in Science was held June 22-26, 2020. It focused on cutting-edge methods to reduce and replace animal tests in toxicology and biomedical research. Over 600 students and early-career researchers from around the world tuned in for a comprehensive program that included lectures, interactive sessions, e-poster presentations, laboratory and software demonstrations, and virtual engagement with speakers and attendees.

Jointly hosted by the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, Johns Hopkins University Center for Alternatives to Animal Testing, and the European Commission Joint Research Centre, the program, which builds on two past events held at the European Commission Joint Research Center in Ispra, Italy, highlighted modern alternatives for using animals, including in vitro methods and computational modeling. The event featured over 45 speakers from top institutions including Harvard University, Johns Hopkins University, the National Institutes of Health, the Environmental Protection Agency, the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, and more.

The Summer School recognized a few outstanding early-career scientists for their efforts in innovative science. A list of award winners is available below. 

We are grateful for your participation, for the efforts of our speakers, and to the organizing committee for essential support and planning of the meeting. 

Presentation slides and recordings are available here

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Award Winners 

The Early Career Researchers Advancing 21st Century Science (ERA21) Recognition Award was presented to Lubnaa Hossenbaccus for their poster Evaluation of the Environmental Exposure Unit as an appropriate model to study house dust mite induced allergic rhinitis.

The PETA International Science Consortium Ltd. Award for Innovative Approaches in Science was awarded to Viviana Stephanie Costa Gagosian, for their poster on Development of a new reconstructed human epidermis equivalent and performance as skin irritation model. 

The Summer School on Innovative Approaches is Science Poster Awards were presented to the following:

  • 1st place: Naeem Sheik Abdul for their poster Fumonisin B1-Induced Mitochondrial Stress and Intervention by Rooibos: Old Foe New Hero
  • 2nd place: Meryem Ok for their poster A Novel Planar Crypt Microarray for Real-Time Evaluation of Human Intestinal Stem Cell Fate
  • 3rd place: Jose Caceres-Alban for their poster on Bioprinting strategies with potential for in vitro modelling of exposure and disease
  • 3rd place: Melissa Saibene for their poster A complex tetra-culture alveolar in vitro model to study the toxicological effects of gold nanoparticle suspension

The Summer School on Innovative Approaches is Science Engagement Awards were presented to the following:

  • The Biomedical Research Track Participation Award was given to Kim Evans
  • The Toxicology Track In Vitro and In Silico Approaches Award was given to Katelyn Lavrich
  • The Toxicology Track Integrated Approaches Award was given to Veronica Bochenek
  • The Toxicology Track Regulatory Application and Risk Assessment Award was given to Ishita Virmani, Skye Kelty, and Riet Van Deun