6–7 May 2020
Cancer Research UK Cambridge Institute

This symposium is a forum where practitioners of established or emerging in situ hybridization technologies come together to share unpublished know-hows and pitfalls with trainees, scientific peers, and industry partners.

Form follows function and vice versa in biology. This principle underlies in situ analysis of DNA and RNA within intact cells, tissues, or whole organisms. Classic in situ nucleic acid hybridization techniques revolutionized the study of spatial dynamics in gene expression during organismal development, including sub-cellular RNA localization involved in specifying the developmental axis. In medicine, DNA in situ hybridization methods have been utilized in the diagnosis of hematological malignancies affecting patient management.  

Today, advances in DNA synthesis, single-molecule imaging, and computational analysis are transforming in situ technologies, enabling unparalleled sensitivity, depth, and resolution. While such advances have opened the field of in situ hybridization to new frontiers, we are mindful that such methods must find their way to biologists who will make discoveries and clinical pathologists who will examine patient specimens. Unfortunately, the multi-disciplinary nature of modern in situ technologies can yield protocols that are challenging for many labs. Moreover, distinguishing robust protocols and applications from early-stage method development and proof-of-concept demonstrations can be demanding for non-experts.

Our mission is to 1) serve as a clearinghouse for curated in situ hybridization methodologies and protocols with recommendations from in-house and invited reviewers, and 2) provide a forum where practitioners of established or emerging in situ hybridization technologies come together to share unpublished know-hows and pitfalls with trainees, scientific peers, and industry partners. In this spirit, our conferences are centred around application-specific in situ hybridization protocols, along with a critical assessment from biologists, technologists, and clinicians. At the end of each conference, our goal is to summarize key technological advances and identify protocols suited for specific biological or clinical applications.

The field of in situ hybridization will continue to evolve and incorporate the latest advances from chemistry, microscopy, genomics, and computational analysis, perhaps making it even more challenging to implement. However, we believe that a community of advanced practitioners, industry collaborators, biologists, and clinicians, in which the essential ‘nuts-and-bolts’ of individual technologies and applications are thoughtfully deliberated, is vital to its refinement and commercialization as a critical tool in scientific discoveries and clinical diagnosis.   

Sessions

Session 1  

Insights to Multiplexing Challenges

  Chair: Dr Julia Jones, University of Cambridge, UK

Session 2  

In situ single cell-based methods

  Chair: Professor Scott Fraser, University of Southern California, US

Session 3

Genomic organisation and Hybrid protocols

  Chair: Professor Jay Lee, Cold Spring Harbor Labs, US

Session 4

In Situ Hybridisation methods in disease and infection

  Chair: Dr Romualdo Ciau-Uitz, University of Oxford, UK

 

View Programme