Our objective was to bring together the numerous investigators who do research on oncogenic DNA viruses to foster new collaborations and ways of thinking about Kaposi’s sarcoma virus and to explore new therapeutic strategies for treating patients with ailments associated with this oncogenic virus.
The 22nd International Workshop on Kaposi’s Sarcoma Herpesvirus (KSHV) and Related Agents was the 25th Anniversary of the virus’s discovery. The 2019 annual conference brought together 184 researchers and clinicians working on the oncogenic human herpesvirus, Kaposi Sarcoma Herpesvirus (KSHV), and other closely related pathogens.
The first KSHV Workshop was held in 1998 at UC-Santa Cruz. Meetings have been held annually since then, rotating among the US west coast, US east coast, and Europe, typically attended by 120-150 participants. In 2012 and 2018, joint KSHV and EBV meetings were held and attended by 200-250 participants.
The International Workshop on KSHV and Related Agents is the premier forum for the exchange of new research developments in the field of gamma-herpesvirus biology and disease as it relates to Kaposi’s sarcoma virus. A yearly meeting is key to enhance interactions among all scientists in the field and promote interdisciplinary communication and collaborations among gamma-herpesvirus researchers with expertise that span:
- molecular virus biology
- innate and adaptive immunobiology
- animal models of pathogenesis
- pathology, epidemiology and therapeutic strategies
Thus, this meeting facilitates cross-fertilization of ideas, techniques, and reagents and provides a critical environment to strengthen the education and professional development of trainees, spanning graduate students, medical students, post-doctoral fellows and clinical fellows, and pre-tenured junior faculty; with added emphasis for those under represented in biomedical research or coming from disadvantaged backgrounds.
The meeting encourages the presentation of data before publication to enable open discussion and feedback from a field of experts, in addition to fostering the development of their scientific communication skills. Networking opportunities will be structured for trainees to interact with senior faculty at academic institutions and scientists from industry and government.