PHA4GE Conference 2023, Cape Town, 30 October - 1 November 2023
The Public Health Alliance for Genomic Epidemiology (PHA4GE) will draw some 100 participants from 32 countries to Cape Town for its 2023 Conference, to be hosted at the Cavalli Estate from 30 October to 1 November.
The conference will be themed ‘Developing Collaborative Bioinformatics solutions for Public Health & Beyond’. Sessions will be dedicated to a swath of topics and discussions, including quality assurance in public health laboratories, priority pathogens, computational tools for pathogen surveillance, and infrastructure to enable public health pathogen genomics in resource-limited settings.
The conference will open with a keynote address from Dr Anita Ghansah, senior research fellow at the Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research, University of Ghana. Dr Torsten Semmler, head of the Genome Competence Centre at the Robert Koch Institute in Germany, will close the meeting with the event’s second keynote address.
The interest in the conference, the Alliance’s first since its founding in 2019, speaks to the growing interest in the fields of genomics and bioinformatics as key tools to combat disease around the globe, explains Professor Alan Christoffels, chairperson of the Alliance’s steering committee and director of the South African National Bioinformatics Institute (SANBI) at the University of the Western Cape.
“In many ways, genomics is still an undervalued part of countries’ – and the world’s – public health response to disease outbreaks,” he adds. “But Covid-19 illustrated how it can help inform how, when and where countries and regions can address diseases of concern.”
A two-day workshop programme will also take place at the University of the Western Cape over the weekend immediately preceding the conference, ie 27 and 28 October.