Keystone Symposia

This meeting took place in 2004

For a complete list of the meetings for the upcoming/current season, see our meeting list, or search for a meeting.

Molecular Control of Adipogenesis and Obesity (X2)

Organizer(s) Stephen R. Farmer and Sheila Collins
March 4—10, 2004
Fairmont Banff Springs • Banff, AB Canada
Abstract Deadline: Nov 3, 2003
Late Abstract Deadline:
Scholarship Deadline:
Early Registration Deadline: Jan 5, 2004

Sponsored by Abbott Laboratories and Biovitrum AB

Summary of Meeting:
The focus of this conference is on understanding the molecular mechanisms that control the formation and function of adipose tissue as well as understanding how various physiologic processes acting through adipose tissue regulate metabolism and energy homeostasis. This is a very timely conference since there has been an alarming increase in obesity and its associated disorders (most notably type 2 diabetes) throughout the United States and the Western World during the last 10 years. It is clear now that obesity is associated with an increased risk of diabetes. From 1991 to 2000, there was a 61% increase in obesity and 49% increase in type 2 diabetes among adults of both genders. The most exciting current research in this field includes: 1. Identification of the adipocyte as an endocrine cell which acts at the center of a complex physiologic process to control overall metabolism and energy balance by secreting hormones, cytokines and other peptides that regulate functions in the hypothalamus, muscle and liver. 2. Characterization of adipocyte-specific secreted proteins such as adiponectin that act on the liver and muscle to sensitize these tissues to insulin. 3. Continued on-going research on leptin - defining its mechanism of action within the brain and in the periphery. 4. The role of circulating fatty acids and their accumulation in peripheral tissues such as liver and muscle where they contribute to the insulin resistance observed in these tissues in obese individuals. 5. Identification and characterization of the signaling pathways and transcription factors that regulate the formation of adipose tissue (adipogenesis) and thermogenesis in adipocytes and muscle cells. 6. Elucidation of the role of nuclear hormone receptors and their associated cofactors in regulating glucose and lipid homeostasis. In addition, several of these receptors are targets for drug discovery to combat obesity and to sensitize individuals to insulin. This is most elegantly illustrated by the elucidation of the mechanism of action of the thiazolidinedione family of insulin sensitizers, which are ligands for PPAR gamma (the master regulator of adipogenesis). Some of the major problems are: Understanding the contribution of genetics versus the environment and life style to obesity and type 2 diabetes. Awaiting bioinformatics from the genome and proteome progects to help elucidate some of these problems. A further understanding of the integration of insulin-responsive tissues in regulating metabolism and energy balance. To identify new hormones and peptides that mediate the signaling processes among these different tissues. To determine why visceral fat depots are linked to a higher risk of cardiovascular disease and diabetes in obese individuals. The goal of this meeting is to bring together experts in the listed areas of research to present their lastest results so that the obesity and diabetes research community can integrate this information with their own observations to begin to understand the underlying cause of obesity and its related disorders. This meeting is strengthened by the fact that it is a joint meeting with Diabetes Mellitus: Molecular Mechanisms, Genetics and New Therapies, which will facilitate an even greater interaction across additional fields of expertise.

View Meeting Program


Scholarship / Award Information

Scholarship Deadline: (11:59 PM US Mountain Standard Time)
*All deadlines end at 11:59 PM US Mountain Standard Time
NOTE: Please use the button above to Apply for a Scholarship


Keystone Symposia is offering scholarships of up to 1,200 USD to Students and Postdoctoral fellows. These scholarships are to be used to help defray the expenses associated with conference attendance, including airfare (restrictions may apply based on funding source), ground transportation, lodging costs, and a portion of meeting registration. Receipts will be required to receive reimbursement.

Abstracts submitted for poster presentation will be used as the basis for awarding the scholarships. Scholarship recipients will be selected based on the quality of science of the abstract and the relevance of the abstract to the conference topic. Only one application per abstract is accepted. Only one award per lab will be allocated.


To be eligible for a scholarship, you must be:

A graduate student or postdoctoral fellow currently enrolled in an academic institute at the start of the meeting for which you are applying. Note: a graduate student is defined as a student who is studying for a higher degree at an academic institution. A postdoctoral fellow is defined as an individual with a Ph.D., M.D., or DVM degree who is engaged in a temporary period of mentored research and/or scholarly training for the purpose of acquiring the professional skills needed to pursue their desired career path, and is within 6 years of these degrees.

Review Criteria

Criteria for Abstract Review:

  1. Relevance to the meeting topic
  2. Significance of the scientific question and results
  3. Style
    • Organization (e.g. the abstract has a clear beginning, middle and end)
    • Grammar and spelling
  4. Clarity of scientific presentations
    • Clear question or hypothesis
    • Sufficient background
    • The experimental approach and rationale for the approach are clear
    • The results are clearly presented
    • The interpretation and conclusions are reasonable and logical

Application Process

If you are eligible and wish to be considered for a scholarship, you should complete all of the following by the scholarship deadline for the meeting you wish to attend. It is recommended you begin these steps in advance of the deadline date to ensure completion.

Click here to start a scholarship application.

  See the Scholarship FAQ's

Underrepresented Trainee Scholarships are also available...
Please Click Here for more information about Underrepresented Trainee Scholarship.

  See the Underrepresented Trainee Scholarship FAQ's

If you have any questions, please contact