International Meetings on Hyaluronan

  • 1985 St. Tropez (France)
    Organizer: Endre A. Balazs
  • 1986 London (England)
    Organizers: Torvard C. Laurent and Roger Mason
  • 1988 Stockholm (Sweden)
    Organizer: Torvard C. Laurent
  • 1999 Padua (Italy)
    Organizers: Giovanni Abatangelo and Paul H. Weigel
  • 2000 Wrexham (Wales)
    Organizers: Glyn O. Phillips, J.F. Kennedy, P.A. Williams
  • 2002, 2003 & 2008 (St. Tropez, France) Conversations on Hyaluronan I, II, and III
    Organizers: Endre A. Balazs and Janet L. Denlinger, Matrix Biology Institute

2002 Conversations on Hyaluronan I

The first Conversations on Hyaluronan meeting supported by MBI was held in September 2002. The subject of this meeting was the Structure of Hyaluronan.
Participants were:
  • Endre Balazs (Matrix Biology Institute, Edgewater, NJ, USA)
  • Mary Cowman (Polytechnic University, Brooklyn, NY, USA)
  • Anthony John Day (University of Manchester, Manchester, UK)
  • Timothy Hardingham (Universities of Manchester & Liverpool, Manchester, UK)
  • Vincent C. Hascall (The Cleveland Clinic Foundation, Cleveland, OH, USA)
  • Torvard Laurent (University of Uppsala, Uppsala, Sweden)
  • Glyn O. Phillips (Phillips Hydrocolloids Research LTD, Wales, UK)
  • John Sheehan (University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC, USA)

2003 Conversations on Hyaluronan II

Organizers: Endre A. Balazs and Janet L. Denlinger, Matrix Biology Institute
The second Conversations on Hyaluronan II meeting supported by MBI was held in June 2003. The subject of this meeting was the Biological Function of Hyaluronan.
Participants were:
  • Endre Balazs (Matrix Biology Institute, Edgewater, NJ, USA)
  • Anthony John Day (University of Manchester, Manchester, UK)
  • Vincent C. Hascall (The Cleveland Clinic Foundation, Cleveland, OH, USA)
  • Cheryl Knudson (East Carolina University, Greenville, NC, USA)
  • Warren Knudson (East Carolina University, Greenville, NC, USA)
  • Torvard Laurent (University of Uppsala, Uppsala, Sweden)
  • Robert Stern (University of San Francisco, San Francisco, CA, USA)
  • Bryan Toole (Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston, SC, USA)
  • Eva Turley (London Regional Cancer Center, Ontario, Canada)
  • Paul Weigel (University of Oklahoma, Oklahoma City, USA)
  • Thomas Wight (The Hope Heart Institute, Seattle, WA, USA)

At both of these meetings, all participants were scientists who were well-known worldwide and spent most of their lives working intensively on the structure and function of hyaluronan and proteoglycans. They presented papers on their research on hyaluronan.

Interviews with Hyaluronan Scientists

At the meetings held in 2002 and 2003, all participants were interviewed by Istvan Hargittai and Magdolna Hargittai, both of whom are chemistry professors at the Budapest University of Technology and Economics. Between 2000 and 2006, the Hargittai’s published seven volumes (in English) with interviews of famous chemists and biological chemists under the title: “Candid Science”. Balazs and Denlinger invited them to interview the participants of the two meetings on the subjects of their research on hyaluronan and proteoglycans. These interviews were published by MBI in the following years in the books series: Hyaluronan: from Basic Science to Clinical Applications. Volume 1 is entitled “Conversations with Hyaluronan Scientists” and Volume 3, “More Conversations with Hyaluronan Scientists.” (For details, see Hyaluronan Books and Publications)

2003 The 1st International Society of Hyaluronan Sciences (ISHAS) Meeting
Cleveland (Ohio, USA)
Organizers: Endre A. Balazs and Vincent C. Hascall

MBI, under the direction of E.A. Balazs and J.L. Denlinger in cooperation with the Cleveland Clinic Foundation under the direction of Vincent Hascall, K. Vukovich, M. Dian and L. Politi-Wilk, organized this meeting in Cleveland, OH, USA in the Fall of 2003. At the meeting, 219 lectures and posters were presented and 314 participants attended the meeting, 152 from USA and 162 from other countries. The financial support was primarily provided by the Matrix Biology Institute and the Cleveland Clinic Foundation. The following companies also contributed: Genzyme Corp., Sekagaku Corp., Lifecore Biomedical, Inc., Gideon Richter USA Inc., Wyeth Pharmaceuticals, Q-Med AB, Genzyme Advanced Biomaterials Inc., Novozymes, Inc., Corgenics Inc., and Hyaluron Inc.

The early leadership of ISHAS decided to honor a member of the society at future meetings of the Society for their long and successful work and substantial discoveries on hyaluronan or proteoglycans that produced important new knowledge and understanding of the function of the biomatrix. The first such honor was presented to Torvard Laurent at the 1st ISHAS meeting in Cleveland Ohio in 2003. John E. Scott gave a speech in Torvard’s honor entitled: “Torvard C. Laurent (TCL) A Touch of Class”

At this meeting, the establishment of the “Rooster Award” was also announced. This award is given to acknowledge a “significant scientific contribution to the therapeutic use of hyaluronan”.

Details of the Dinner and Tributes
October 16, 2003
to Honor Torvard Laurent


2007: The 2nd International Society of Hyaluronan Sciences Meeting
Charleston (South Carolina, USA)
Organizers: Bryan P. Toole and Vincent C. Hascall

The 2nd meeting of the International Society of Hyaluronan Sciences was held in Charleston (South Carolina, USA) in April 2007. It was supported by the Matrix Biology Institute and the Medical University of South Carolina and by 14 international pharmaceutical companies that produced and/or sold hyaluronan worldwide.

The meeting was organized by Bryan P. Toole, Professor in the Department of Cell Biology and Anatomy of the Medical University of South Carolina, and Professor Vincent C. Hascall, Department of Biomedical Engineering, The Cleveland Clinic, Cleveland, Ohio.

Endre A. Balazs was honored at this meeting for his work on hyaluronan.


2010: The 3rd International Society of Hyaluronan Sciences meeting
Kyoto (Japan)
Organizers: Koji Kimata, Masaki Yanagishita and Bryan P. Toole

The third meeting of the International Society for Hyaluronan Sciences was held in Kyoto, Japan in June 2010. It was generously supported by Seikagaku Company of Japan. Numerous Japanese non-profit organizations and the Matrix Biology Institute also supported the meeting. In addition, drug companies from Japan, USA, China, Sweden and Czeck Republic provided support.

The meeting was organized by Koji Kimata, Aigchi Medical University, Bryan Toole, Medical University of South Carolina and Masaki Yanagishita, Tokyo Medical and Dental University.

Vincent C. Hascall was honored at this meeting for his work on glycosaminoglycans and important contribution to the success of ISHAS and its first two meetings. Timothy Hardingham gave a speech in Vincent’s honor titled: "The Long, the Short and the Tall of Vincent Hascall".

2013: The 4th International Society of Hyaluronan Sciences meeting
Oklahoma City (Oklahoma, USA)
Organizer: Paul H. Weigel

The fourth meeting of the International Society of Hyaluronan Sciences will be held June 2-7, 2013 in Oklahoma City, OK, USA and organized by Paul H. Weigel, current President of ISHAS.

For more information visit ISHAS’s website at www.ISHAS.ORG