The 2011 ABES was successfully held on Saturday, Nov. 5th 2011, at the KUSCO headquarter in Vienna, VA.

This symposium was organized by the National Institutes of Health (NIH)-Korean Scientist Association (NIH-KSA) with the active involvement and generous financial and logistic support of KUSCO and KSEA.

In fact, this was the first time that the ABES was held at the KUSCO headquarter, as previous ABES conferences were always held on NIH campus. The relocation of the conference site to KUSCO headquarter in VA is symbolic of the NIH-KSA, KUSCO and KSEA’s efforts to link biomedical scientists in the greater Washington area to a close knit community of scientific exchange and communication. Announcement of this event was disseminated through a variety of media including the KSEA website, the NIH-KSA mailing list, newspaper such as the Korea Times (, local scientific organizations such as the BLSA (Baltimore Life Scientists Association), and Universities including U. of MD and Johns Hopkins.

Two eminent senior scientists from the NIH, Dr. MH Park (NIDCR, NIH) and Dr. BJ Song (NIAAA, NIH) delivered the keynote lectures, which were titled “Hypusine synthesis in eIF5A: A novel post-translational modification essential for eukaryotic cell proliferation“ and “How to live long and healthy? Lessons from rodent experiments”, respectively. More than 35 poster abstracts and 14 oral presentations from various areas of bioscience and engineering were presented, among which six posters were awarded the NIH-KSA poster prize. Moreover, two outstanding lectures were awarded the Johng S. Rhim Young Investigator prizes, which have been made possible by the generous donation by Dr. Johng S. Rhim, the founding President of the NIH-KSA.

The symposium had more than 80 participants from the NIH, FDA, Johns Hopkins University, and the University of Maryland. Importantly, a number of attendees and presenters were non-Korean scientists, indicating the growing interest of the US scientific community in Korean and Korean-American scientists. Finally, the generous support of KUSCO was appreciated by the NIH-KSA, which was commemorated by awarding a plaque to KUSCO. The NIH-KSA is a 250 member strong association of Korean and Korean-American scientists at the NIH. Established in 1990 by Dr. Johng S. Rhim, the NIH-KSA is one of the most important organizations in the biomedical field that bridges the US research and scientific planning activities to Korean biomedical scientists both in the US as well as in Korea.