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The School of Optometry and Vision Sciences hosts successful stem cell symposium event

21 November 2017

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Japanese sake-barrel breaking “Kagami biraki” ceremony during the evening reception of the Symposium (from left to right: Prof Marcela Votruba; Prof Garry Baxter; Dr Masayo Takahashi; Prof Kohji Nishida; Prof Nobuo Ueno).

On 2-3 November, The School of Optometry and Vision Sciences welcomed over 120 guests including delegates from Osaka University as part of a research symposium event entitled Stem Cells & the Eye.

The event, which was opened by Rt. Hon. Carwyn Jones AM, First Minister of Wales and Cardiff University’s Vice-Chancellor, Professor Colin Riordan, welcomed researchers with a common interest in stem cell biology as applied to the eye and vision.

This research area had a truly global reach,  guests from Japan, the UK, and the USA were brought together to discuss the advances in stem cell applications in relation to ophthalmology.

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The Symposium featured a koto player - a traditional Japanese musical instrument.

The first day of fascinating talks was followed by an evening reception with a Japanese cultural theme, where representatives from Wales-Japan Club, the Japanese Council in Wales, Embassy of Japan, as well as Welsh Government were present.

The reception included Japanese traditional musical instrument koto-player and sake barrel breaking ceremony, “Kagami biraki”, representing harmony and symbolising two families, Japan and the UK, coming together in order to promote collaboration and new developments.

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The event was opened by Rt. Hon. Carwyn Jones AM, First Minister of Wales

Lead organiser, Professor Andrew Quantock said, “I am delighted with the success of the symposium. It was an honour to welcome such a vast array of people with a common interest and I am hopeful that this symposium will foster collaborations between the UK and Japan-based researchers with shared interests in stem cell biology.”

The Symposium organisers would like to thank all the speakers, the Keynote speakers Professor Sir Martin Evans and Dr Masayo Takahashi, as well as JSPS, BBSRC, Wales-Japan club, the Welsh Government, Embassy of Japan, and all delegates for their support.

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From left to right, the event lead organizers Prof Kohji Nishida (Osaka University) Prof Andrew Quantock (Cardiff University) along with the co-organizers Dr. Elena Koudouna (Cardiff University) and Dr. Alina Akhbanbetova (Cardiff University).

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