ISAC E-News -- Spring 2003
1st International Cytomics Conference in Wales: A Successful, Historic ISAC Event
by Harry Crissman
On the ISAC home page is a list of ISAC's goals as a scientific and educational organization. The second item is: "To facilitate integration of the many disciplines within analytical cytology."
At the ISAC Council Strategic Planning meeting in May 2001, the Council decided that ISAC should move in the direction of mainstream genomics and proteomics and integrate these fields into the society's classical vision of cytometry.
The term cytomics was chosen to represent this integration. It was decided to use the term cytomics to attract scientists to ISAC from these recently developed disciplines.
At the 2001 meeting it was decided to hold an interim ISAC meeting in Wales around the cytomics theme AND Paul Smith was given charge of the organization. In advance of that Conference, at the 2002 ISAC Congress in San Diego, the initial two days were devoted to cytomics plenary sessions with presentations by leading scientists in the field.
The success of the 2002 congress, as demonstrated by a record attendance of about 1,160 registered participants, was indicative of the response by the membership to move to broaden the horizons of the Society.
On 6-9 May 2003 the 1st International Cytomics Conference was held at the Celtic Manor Resort in Wales and heralded as "A New Era in Cell-Based Research," with emphasis on cytometric, proteomic and microarray technologies and new ventures in innovation, application and exploitation.
The conference was truly a scientific success, despite attendance being somewhat less than what was initially anticipated. For those of you who were not able to join us, we really missed you and you missed a fine meeting. You can download the entire program including all the abstracts (presentations and the posters) from the ISAC Web site.
General Information for the Cytometry Community
- The May special issue of Clinical Cytometry on Predictive Medicine contains several outstanding and thought-provoking articles. The issue is rich with new ideas.
- Don't miss the update on ISAC's journals in this issue of E-News.
- Contributions from our readers to ISAC E-News are always welcome and encouraged-from ISAC members in industry, clinical medicine, private consulting, research and others. Contact E-News Editor Scott Cram at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Interested in ISAC funding for a meeting or travel to conduct a course at a meeting?
The ISAC Scientific Advisory Committee has a $10,000 budget to help ISAC lend support to meetings, particularly those sponsored by regional cytometry societies. If you are an organizer of such a meeting, please contact the Scientific Advisory Committee Chair David Galbraith at email@example.com.
At the last ISAC Council meeting (see Council Report below) $5,000 was allocated to the Membership Services Committee to support the travel of ISAC members to non-ISAC meetings. Contact the Membership Services Committee Chair Nicholas Terry at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Call for Nominations
The ISAC Nominating Committee, chaired by ISAC Past President Lisa Staiano-Coico, invites ISAC members to suggest names of individuals to be considered for nomination to serve on the ISAC Council for the 2004-2006 term.
The deadline for submission of names is 1 October 2003.
Send your suggestions via e-mail, fax or mail to:
Lisa Staiano-Coico, Chair
ISAC Nominating Committee
60 Revere Drive, Suite 500
Northbrook, IL 60062
Eight positions will be filled in the upcoming election:
- Councilor, Biological Cytometry (3)
- Councilor, Clinical Cytometry (2)
- Councilor, Cytometric Technology (1)
Details on the duties of these roles are available online at
Nominations by petition may also occur. According to ISAC bylaws, nominations by petition from the membership require the signatures of 17 members of the Society. The deadline for nomination by petition is 1 October 2003.
Send your petitions to ISAC Nominating Committee at the address above.
The Nominating Committee will compile a slate of candidates including at least two nominees for each position. This slate may include nominees by petition. Unslated nominees by petition will also be included on the ballot.
Ballots will be mailed by 15 January 2004, with a 15 March 2004 return deadline.
If you have questions, contact ISAC Headquarters.
Cytometry Journal Update
By Chuck Goolsby
Cytometry Editor in Chief
This is the first of two articles discussing the current health of Cytometry Parts A and B (Clinical Cytometry). The first article will address the status of manuscript submissions with emphasis on Cytometry; an article in the next issue of E-News will discuss impact factor.
In early 2002, as editorial responsibilities for Part A moved from the New York Blood Center to Northwestern University, manuscripts submissions were low. In January 2002, only a handful of manuscripts (seven) were submitted. For the first quarter of 2002, submissions remained thin with 34 submissions. However, as 2002 progressed, manuscript submissions increased with 56 manuscripts submitted for the year. This increase in manuscript submissions in the last three quarters of the year had a stabilizing effect to ensure that the journal continued to publish within its regular publication schedule.
Cytometry Part A is now comfortably publishing 12 issues per year with approximately seven original articles per issue. A total of 79 articles, including Original Research, Rapid Communications, and Technical Notes, were published in 2002. Submissions in early 2003 are consistent with or ahead of last year with 43 new submissions for the first quarter. Our projection for the year is 72 submissions. Although this is very positive in comparison to early 2002, the number of manuscripts published in Cytometry Part A for 2002 is down from previous years. Our goal is to publish 12 issues per year with 12 to 13 original articles per issue.
At our current rejection rate of about 50 percent, we need manuscript submissions to increase to 280-300 manuscripts per year to meet this target. Thus a major issue immediately facing the journal is increasing the number of high-quality manuscript submissions.
A quick word about Part B (Clinical Cytometry) as well. For several years now, manuscript submissions at Part B have been stable at 85 to 90 per year. This submission level coupled with our current rejection rate of approximately 50 percent has seen Part B fill, or slightly exceed, its budgeted page allotment for the last couple of years.
Although the numbers of submitted manuscripts are lower than Part A, Part B is published only six times per year with a lower number of budgeted pages per issue than Part A. Stable submissions for regular articles coupled with a large number of manuscripts submitted for inclusion in a special issue devoted to the topic of Cytomics In Predictive Medicine (vol. 53B, number 1, May, 2003) will likely result in a record year for the number of articles published in Part B.
However, our goal is for Part B to be the leading journal in the field, thus increasing the numbers of high quality manuscripts is also of high priority for Part B as well.
Can we increase the number of high quality manuscripts being submitted? Absolutely! We have assembled an editorial team that is working hard to achieve this goal. Below are highlights of the some of the initiatives that are planned and underway.
ISAC and the Clinical Cytometry Society (CCS) have made arrangements to set aside funds to help enhance the journals and facilitate their growth and prestige. How these dollars will be allocated to strengthen the journals each year will be a joint task of both societies.
An aggressive campaign by a team of Editorial Board members to recruit manuscripts at a wide variety of meetings is planned. Large mailing campaigns are being considered to invite manuscript submissions from researchers in topical areas of interest to the journal and its readership. High-profile thematic special issues with intense manuscript recruitment efforts that include targeted invitations to potential authors and announcements distributed at appropriate thematic conferences and meetings are both planned and underway.
A team of review editors is recruiting review articles on a broad range of topics for both journals, the fruits of which should start to be seen in issues publishing in mid to late 2003. Authors have been recruited for more than 15 review articles with many approaching completion.
These initiatives will be supported by focused publicity and marketing campaigns by John Wiley & Sons. Further, in the near future selected articles from current Cytometry Parts A and B will be made available free of charge from the journal's home page at http://www.interscience.wiley.com/cytometry, regardless of subscription or membership status, in order to increase exposure of the journals. This will be coupled with targeted e-mail campaigns calling attention to free articles and inviting manuscript submissions.
The above initiatives are only a subset of what is being done to increase the quality and exposure of the journal. However, it must also be stressed that if you as a member of the Society want to see your journal be successful, you must submit to, and support it.
Some of your best manuscripts must come to the journal. In addition, whenever possible, your efforts encouraging colleagues to submit their cytometry-related work to the journal can be key in enhancing the quality and impact of the journal.
A key part of ensuring our success requires the strong support and work of the membership at large. If you have suggestions or wish to discuss issues relative to the journals, please contact me by e-mail at email@example.com or by phone at 312-926-6948.
ISAC Membership Award -- Call for Nominations
The ISAC Awards Committee is soliciting nominations for the ISAC Membership Award. The award is given in recognition of exceptional service to the cytometric community. The recipient of this award is selected from a list of individuals nominated by the ISAC membership and need not be a member of the Society.
The awardee will be selected based on the will of the membership, as inferred from these nominations, so we encourage you to make your voice heard!
The awardee will be presented a plaque and given lifetime membership in ISAC.
Please send your nominations via email to Lisa Staiano-Coico, Chair, Awards Committee at firstname.lastname@example.org. No later than Friday, November 28, 2003. Please provide the following information for each person you nominate:
- Name of each nominee
- Contact Information if the nominee is not an ISAC Member
(Institution, address, phone, email)
- A brief description of the exceptional service the nominee has provided to the cytometric community, such that the nominee warrants selection for the Membership Award.
All nominations will be shared with the Awards Committee. The Awards Committee consist of the following ISAC members:
Lisa Staiano-Coico, Chair
Maria Pallavicini (Ex Officio)
Harry Crissman (Ex Officio)
1st International Cytomics Conference
Nearly 300 attendees enjoyed the International Society for Analytical Cytology's 1st International Cytomics Conference, jointly supported by the Royal Microscopial Society and the Welsh Development Agency, 6-8 May 2003 in Cardiff, Wales. Delegates included individuals from 22 countries.
Thirty-five experts in cytomics from throughout Europe and North America spoke at the event, held at the Celtic Manor, a five-star resort complex 90 minutes from London. Featured topics included: Extracting Meaning from Microarray Data; Time-resolved Fluorescence Technologies and the Live Cell; DNA Replication and Cancer Diagnosis; and Perspectives and Challenges in Systems Biology.
The keynote speech, Honest Jim Revealed--The Writing Life of James D. Watson, was presented by Prof. Errol C. Friedberg, M.D., a widely recognized leader in the field of DNA damage and repair and as an investigator whose work has contributed to many seminal discoveries in this area of fundamental biomedical research.
In addition to numerous publications on this subject, Dr. Friedberg is the co-author of DNA Repair and Mutagenesis and author of Correcting the Blueprint of Life: An Historical Account of the Discovery of DNA Repair Mechanisms. He is professor and chair of the Department of Pathology and the Senator Betty and Dr. Andy Andujar Distinguished Chair in Pathology at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas.
The sold-out exhibit hall was host to 26 different exhibitor organizations. Seventy-one posters were also available for viewing throughout the conference. A highlight of the conference was the banquet, featuring a performance by the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama.
Many thanks for an informative and stimulating conference to conference chair Paul Smith and the organizing committee.
The final program is available on the ISAC Web site.
Highlights of the ISAC Council Meeting
May 5-7 2003, Celtic Manor, Wales
Support of member travel to non-ISAC meetings. Council approved a $5,000 budget for the Membership Services Committee to support the travel of ISAC members to non-ISAC meetings.
Electronic publishing. ISAC is working with the publisher of Cytometry and Clinical Cytometry to make our journals more Web-accessible. As part of this effort, Council strongly endorsed increasing open electronic access to articles published in Cytometry and Clinical Cytometry. One version of this plan might be that access could become free and unrestricted to the public one year after the original publication date.
Upcoming congresses. Plans are proceeding for the 2004 Congress in Montpellier. The 2006 Congress is planned to be held in Quebec City, Canada. ISAC is continuing to discuss with the International Society of Experimental Hematology the possibility that our 2006 Congress will be held in conjunction with their annual meeting.
Cytomics. Cytometric analyses that "integrate genomics and proteomics with the function of cells and tissues" have been a focus of the XXI Congress in San Diego and the recent 1st International Cytomics Conference in Wales. To explore and explain how "cytomics" fits into the existing scope of our Society's activities, ISAC leadership and the journal editor will be working on developing a paper on this subject for publication in Cytometry.
Name of the Society. Many ISAC members have noted that over time the word cytology in ISAC's name has come to seem less representative of what Society members do than the more encompassing term cytometry. Council therefore approved a resolution to change the name of the Society to the "International Society for Analytical Cytometry," which, while not perfect, would not change the ISAC initials. This change would require an amendment to the constitution; and the proposal will therefore be discussed at the next business meeting of the Society, and must finally be submitted by ballot to the membership for ratification.
Below is a list of ISAC-sponsored conferences and workshops.
For a more thorough listing of conferences in the field, see the ISAC Events Calendar. We welcome submissions to the events calendar. All listings should include contact information.
4th Samuel A. Latt Conference - Quantitative Biology for the Clinic
20-22 November 2003
Yosemite Lodge, Yosemite National Park, California
Conference Chairs: Maria Pallavicini, Joe Gray, and Graeme Hodgson
More information will be posted on the ISAC Web site in coming weeks.
ISAC XXII International Congress
22-27 May 2004
Le Corum, Montpellier, France
The premier educational conference for professionals and new investigators working in biological, clinical and analytical cytometry.
More information will be posted on the ISAC Web site in coming months.