Retina Workshop 2019

Retina: Mechanism of photoreceptor degeneration and regeneration, and roles of immune system


Monday 11 November to Friday 15 November 2019


Okinawa Institute for Science and Technology Graduate School (OIST)
OIST Seaside House Campus

Workshop organizers

Ichiro Masai (OIST) and Sumiko Watanabe (University of Tokyo)


Loss of photoreceptors causes blindness, which severely compromises the quality of people life. There are more than 250 genes whose genetic mutations induce photoreceptor degeneration in human. Many research groups investigated molecular mechanism that underlies photoreceptor degeneration. However it is still far beyond to clarify the mechanism of photoreceptor degeneration and develop effective therapeutic tools. In contrast to mammals, damaged retinas effectively regenerate in fish. Recently, it was revealed that helper T cells are promptly activated in damaged zebrafish retina and triggers a cytokine TNF-alpha, which subsequently promotes Muller glia to start regeneration program. In addition, microglia also respond to injury or degeneration of retinal neurons. So, it is likely that immune cells play a critical role in the transition between photoreceptor degeneration and regeneration. In this workshop, we will invite excellent researchers, who are investigating the mechanism of retinal degeneration, retinal regeneration and the roles of microglia and helper T cells in retinal regeneration. The workshop is designed to enable participants to overview each of these topics. So, the workshop provides a platform where all the participants actively interact with each other, share their data, and exchange their new ideas, hopefully leading to future collaboration.

Confirmed Speakers

  • Dusanka Deretic (UNM school of Medicine)
  • Silvia Finnemann (Fordham University)
  • Seth Blackshaw (Johns Hopkins University)
  • Daniel Goldman (Michigan University)
  • David Hyde (University of Notre Dame)
  • Thomas Reh (University of Washington)
  • Deepak Lamba (UCSF)
  • Kazu Kikuchi (National Cerebral Cardiovascular Center Res. Inst)
  • Jeff Mumm (John Hopkins University)
  • Wai Wong (NIH)
  • Tian Xue (Univ. Sci. Tech. Chia)
  • Jin Woo Kim (KAIST)
  • Takahisa Furukawa (Osaka University)

How to Apply

We will recruit 30 participants, who are motivated retinal investigators from Japan and overseas. Young researchers and PhD students are especially welcome. All the participants are supposed to attend a full period of workshop and give an oral or poster presentation.

OIST will support meals and lodging during the workshop, and transportation between Okinawa Naha airport and the workshop venue (full coverage). For young postdoc researchers and phD students who need financial support for international flight, we will consider their travel support (partial coverage, up to 50%), although we strongly encourage applicants to seek external travel grant/fellowship. If you have some special situation, please mention your request for travel support in the letter of intent of your application. 

Please fill out the Retina Workshop 2019 Participation Application by the deadline - Sunday, 28th of July (JST).

Program (Tentative)

Nov 11th (Mon)

  • 13:00-17:30 Registration
  • 17:00 Opening remarks
  • Session I “Introduction of this workshop aim and our research for photoreceptor differentiation and degeneration”
    • 17:10-18:00 Talk1 (50min) Ichiro Masai (OIST)
    • 18:00-18:50 Talk2 (50 min) Sumiko Watanabe (University of Tokyo)
  • 19:00-21:30 Welcome dinner

Nov 12th (Tue)

  • 7:00-9:00 Breakfast
  • Session II “Photoreceptor differentiation and homeostasis”
    • 9:00-9:50 Talk3 (50 min) Dusanka Deretic (UNM school of Medicine)
    • 9:50-10:40 Talk4 (50 min) Silvia Finnemann (Fordham University)
    • 10:40-11:00 Coffee Break
    • 11:00-11:50 Talk5 (50 min) Seth Blackshaw (Johns Hopkins University)
    • 11:50-12:10 Short Talk1 (20 min)
    • 12:10-12:30 Short talk2 (20 min)
  • 12:30-14:00 Lunch
  • 14:00-16:00 Campus tutors
  • Session III “Photoreceptor regeneration”
    • 16:00-16:50 Talk6 (50 min) Daniel Goldman (Michigan University)
    • 16:50-17:40 Talk7 (50 min) David Hyde (University of Notre Dame)
    • 17:40-17:50 Coffee Break
    • 17:50-18:40 Talk8 (50 min) Thomas Reh (University of Washington)
    • 18:40-19:00 Short talk3 (20 min)
  • 19:00-21:30 Dinner
  • 20:00-21:30 Poster session and Evening discussion

Nov 13th (Wed)

  • 7:00-9:00 Breakfast
  • Session IV “The role of immune system in photoreceptor degeneration and regeneration”
    • 9:00-9:50 Talk9 (50min) Deepak Lamba (UCSF)
    • 9:50-10:40 Talk10 (50min) Kazu Kikuchi (Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute)
    • 10:40-11:00 Coffee break
    • 11:00-11:50 Talk11 (50 min) Jeff Mumm (John Hopkins University)
    • 12:00-14:00 Lunch
    • 14:00-14:50 Talk12 (50 min) Wai Wong (NIH)
    • 14:50-15:10 Short Talk4 (20min)
    • 15:10-15:30 Short Talk5 (20 min)
    • 15:30-15:50 Short Talk6 (20 min)
  • 15:50-16:00 Coffee Break
  • Session V “New dynamic approach for photoreceptor functions”
    • 16:00-16:50 Talk13 (50min) Tian Xue (Univ. Sci. Tech. Chia)
    • 16:50-17:40 Talk14 (50min) TBD
    • 17:40-18:00 Coffee Break
    • 18:00-18:20 Short talk7 (20 min)
    • 18:20-18:40 Short talk8 (20 min)
    • 18:40-19:00 Short talk9 (20 min)
  • 19:00-21:30 Dinner
  • 20:00-21:30 Poster session and Evening discussion

Nov 14th (Thu)

  • 7:00-9:00 Breakfast
  • Session VI “Construction of neural circuit of in vivo and in vitro retina”
    • 9:00-9:50 Talk 15 (50 min) Jin Woo Kim (KAIST)
    • 9:50-10:10 Short talk10 (20 min)
    • 10:10-10:30 Short talk11 (20min)
    • 10:30-11:00 Coffee Break
    • 11:00-11:50 Talk16 (50min) Takahisa Furukawa (Osaka University)
  • 12:30-17:00 Excursion to Syuri castle/ Naha or Churaumi aquarium (Lunch in bus)
  • 18:00-20:00 Farewell party

Nov 15th (Fri)

  • 7:00-9:00 Breakfast
  • Departure