04 Mar Helminth Extracellular Vesicle workshop in Hydra was a success (and great fun!)
We held a workshop for researchers studying extracellular vesicles in helminths, which took place in Hydra, Greece on August 30, 2019. In total there were 30 researchers from 17 countries who took part in this meeting. The format provided a unique opportunity for exchange of information with several goals: 1) disseminate recent research findings in EVs across helminth models, 2) discuss the challenges and opportunities associated with EV research in helminths (some of which are similar to the mammalian field and some of which are unique), 3) enable more junior researchers and those new to the field to present their ideas and get feedback, and 4) learn from experts in the broader EV field on technical challenges and emerging biological properties of EVs that are relevant to helminth research. The format consisted of excellent Keynote talks from Prof. Edit Buzas and Dr. Esther Nolte-t Hoen followed by talks from Investigators who have been working with helminth EVs for a number of years as well as lightening talks from those more new to the field. The final session involved small group discussions on several themed questions about EV research and its application in helminth models. The meeting finished with a wrap-up session where all participants discussed what is required to ensure rigour in helminth EV research and explored mechanisms to make more visible the importance of helminth research in understanding fundamental aspects of EV biology & function in animals (a position paper is in draft). Thanks to co-organizers Karl Hoffman (Aberystwyth University), Alex Loukas (James Cook University) and Ron Hokke (Leiden University) as well as Jessica Longworth (Aberystwyth) for administrative support! Thanks to the International Society for extracellular vesicles, International Journal for Parasitology and Elsevier for sponsorship!