Chinese Association of Life Science in Switzerland (CALSS) held its Annual meeting 2014 & Inaugurated a new Division- Agriculture & Plants (A&P)
Zürich: On the 1st of November 2014, the annual meeting of the Chinese Association of Life Science in Switzerland (CALSS) was successfully held in ETH Zurich. The meeting also honored the inauguration of CALSS first branch: division of Agriculture & Plants (A&P) and was addressed by a panel of invited speakers from the University of Zurich, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, Aquaplus and ETH Zurich. They presented a variety of interesting topics, ranging from plant protection and utilization to basic biology and traditional Chinese medicine (TCM). More than 60 Chinese life scientists and TCM practitioners from Switzerland attended the meeting. The chairman of the Chinese Association of Science and Technology in Switzerland, Dr. Jianhua Feng, the chairman of CALSS, Dr. Renwang Peng, vice chairmen, Dr. Wei Hu and Dr. Lei Zhang were in attendance.
Calling the meeting to order, Dr. Renwang Peng introduced CALSS’s organizational structure, scope of activities, and development goals, followed the presentation by Dr. Qiyan Wang-Mueller, the chairman of the division of Agriculture & Plants, the new officially founded section. This new section will concentrate on the organization of events on agriculture development and food security, plant protection and plant use for food and medicine.
In the morning session, keynote speaker, Prof. Enrico Martinoia talked about how plants deal with arsenic contaminated soils and whether basic science can help farmers. Mr. Lukas Taxböck from Aquaplus presented his research on diatoms as bio-indicators of running water in Switzerland.
In the afternoon session, Dr. Philippe Forêt, the co-director of the Environmental Humanities program at the ETH Zurich, presented examples of how individuals and societies may use their creativity to overcome the collapse of systems. Then the speech titled “create a synergistic medicine integrating TCM into western medicine and the conceptual and methodological challenges” was given by Prof. Peter Nick from the University of Karlsruhe. Three young scientists, Dr. Guowei Liu, Dr. Yibo Wu and Dr. Huihui Chen also presented their recent works on the method of genetic manipulation in improving crop nutrient using efficiency, mitochondria activity and immune signaling pathway, respectively.
At the end of the event, each speaker received a “Chinese Plate” from the Chinese Embassy as a souvenir. The annual meeting of CALSS is aimed at not only to enhance the bilateral communication and collaboration in the field of life sciences between China and Switzerland, but also to broaden the horizons of the members. We believe that the establishment of the division of Agriculture & Plants (A&P) will create momentum for achieving this goal!
Report from the Division of A&P, CALSS
Text: Dr. Guowei Liu
Photos: Song Sheng and Xiaokang Lun