Biological and Pharmaceutical Complex Fluids III: Protein Self-Assembly, Rheology and Interfacial Properties

An ECI Conference Series

July 14-18, 2019
Schloss Hernstein
Hernstein, Austria

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Call for Abstracts!   Deadlines:   Oral- April 1, 2019   Poster- April 15, 2019         

Visa Information for Austria

Please forward this link to colleagues who may be interested in the conference topic.

About This Conference

The focus of this conference is quite unique in that it brings together scientists in two very different industrial sectors: Biotherapeutics and Foods.  The common unifying theme being the challenges and progress made in these areas for characterizing complex fluids found commonly in both the sectors, such as proteins.

Biotherapeutics or biologics is rapidly emerging as the next generation of therapeutic solutions for many life-threatening diseases in the area of unmet medical needs.  This sector is expected to continue its significant growth over the next decade as rapid development of recombinant proteins and peptides, along with identification of new targeting approaches, leads to augmentation or replacement of small organic molecules with therapeutic proteins.  Developing stable formulations with these biological complex fluids comes with its own set of challenges as complex specific and non-specific interactions can lead to self-association, irreversible aggregate formation, and other manifestations that negatively impact physicochemical properties and delivery.

These, in turn, lead to issues in formulation storage stability, high viscosity and associated issues in manufacturing, injectability, etc.  Similar to other complex fluids, these biological complex fluids also exhibit rich interfacial and surface properties leading to structuring and interactions with air/water and solid/water interfaces.  Understanding and establishing the structure-property relationships in such systems and understanding interactions in complex biopharmaceutical formulations is, therefore, key to designing stable new therapeutic solutions and novel drug delivery mechanisms.  However, most of these systems have their unique characterization challenges such as small sample volumes, high sensitivity to any applied shear, external conditions, etc.

Also, it is of primary importance to characterize the microstructure and interactions either in vivo or in environments that very closely mimic the biological environment of interest.  The need to characterize and gain physicochemical insights into biological complex fluids/soft matter systems also extends to other industrial sectors such as foods, where proteins are utilized in products and similar insights into the microstructure, rheology and interfacial properties is critical in optimizing food product performance.

This meeting, the third in this ECI series, will focus on bringing together a wide range of multi-disciplinary groups from academia and industry with a view to discussing key challenges, recent developments, key insights and future trends in understanding protein aggregation, rheology and interfacial properties with a specific focus on formulations and products encountered in the biotherapeutics and foods industrial sectors.  It is expected that this will lead to significant cross-industry learning and potential new cross-industry collaborations.

Some of the key areas of focus for the meeting will be:

  • Protein-Protein interactions
  • Protein Aggregation-Thermodynamics, Kinetics and Interactions
  • Protein Rheology and Microrheology in Bulk
  • Protein Structuring and Rheology at Interfaces
  • Impact of Surfactants and Polymers on protein-based forumulatons
  • New Characterization Techniques

Click THIS LINK to visit the previous conference on this topic in 2014.

Confirmed Speakers

Komla Ako, CNRS/Grenoble, France
Michaela Blech, Boehringer Ingelheim, Germany
Guy Carpenter (Kings College, UK)
Luke Clifton (Rutherford Appleton Laboratory, UK)
Nicholas Darton (Arecor, UK)
Nikolai Denkov (University of Sofia, Bulgaria)
Vito Fodera, Copenhagen University, Denmark
Wolfgang Freiss (Ludwig-Maximilians-University of Munich, Germany)
Vitor Geraldes IST, University of Lisbon, Portugal
Christoph Grapentin, Lonza, Switzerland
Joel Karr, University of Colorado, USA
Clément de Loubens, CNRS/Grenoble, France
Mikael Lund, Lund University, Sweden
Cait MacPhee, University of Edinburgh, UK
Daniel Molnar, Boehringer Ingelheim, Germany
Malin Zackrissson Oskolkova, Novo Nordisk, Sweden
Karoline Bechhold Peters (Novartis, Switzerland)
Elke ScholtenWageningen University, Netherlands
Frank Schreiber , Uni Tuebingen, Germany
Ian Shieh (Genentech, USA)
Anna Stradner (Lund University, Sweden)
Marco van de Weert (Copenhagen University, Denmark)
Gerhard Winter, University of München, Germany
Emanuela Zaccarelli, Universita’ “La Sapienza” , Italy
Jingtao Zhang, Merck, USA

(as of 3/13/2019 — More to follow)

Conference Organization


Samiul Amin, Manhattan College, USA
Miguel Rodrigues, University of Lisbon, Portugal
Paolo Arosio, ETHZ, Switzerland

Organizing Committee:

Karin Anderson, Pfizer
Mark Auty, Mondalez, UK
Daniel G. Bracewell, University College London, UK
Robin Curtis, University of Manchester, UK
Tapan Das, Bristol-Myers Squibb, USA
Deniz Zeynal Gunes, Nestle, Switzerland
Michael Marlow, Boehringer-Ingelheim, USA
Christopher Roberts, University of Delaware, USA
Shahid Uddin, Medimmune, UK
Erik van der Linden, Wageningen University and Research, Netherlands

Abstract Submission

Please use the following key areas of focus to pre-select up to three sessions where you believe your work fits best:

  • Protein-Protein Interactions
  • Protein Aggregation-Thermodynamics, Kinetics and Interactions
  • Protein Rheology and Micro-rheology in Bulk
  • Protein Structuring and Rheology at Interfaces
  • Impact of Surfactants and Polymers on Protein-based Formulations
  • New Characterization Techniques

Abstracts (one page maximum) that include specific results and conclusions to allow a scientific assessment of the proposed oral presentation are invited.  Please prepared your abstract according to this template: docx or doc.

Abstracts must be submitted electronically using the template provided at THIS LINK.

Oral abstract submission deadline:                April 1, 2019

Poster abstract submission deadline:             April 15, 2019

Abstracts of all presentations will be made available to conference participants prior to the start of the conference.

Note: Only a limited number of oral presentation slots are available and thus all submissions for oral sessions will be considered for both oral and poster presentation.

ECI will sponsor awards for the outstanding student poster presentations.

Sponsor Levels

Please click on This Link to view the various levels of sponsorship.

Conference Registration

Registration will open soon.

The expected all-inclusive conference fee for single room occupancy  is US $1695.   Note that this includes room for Sunday, Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday nights; all meals beginning with reception/wine-tasting and dinner on Sunday through Thursday breakfast; excursion; taxes and gratuities.  There will be discounted rates for graduate students.

Conference Venue

The conference will be held at Schloss Hernstein Seminar Hotel. The hotel is situated in the wonderful Triestingtal valley, surrounded by pine forests and a carp lake. Guests can enjoy sauna, steam and fitness rooms, as well as a large indoor swimming pool. There are also several signposted routes for jogging on forest tracks starting at the hotel.

Brochure describing the history of Schloss Hernstein:          Part I                    Part II

Hernstein Castle is situated at the fringe of the Viennese Basin, in the stepped footland of the Styrian and Lower Austrian limestone alps. Its history goes back to medieval times: once the castle safeguarded the street to Berndorf Village and the valley before it. In former times the building comprised a housing unit and a chapel. It would have been very difficult to expand the building; therefore a new castle – the core of today´s castle – was built in the valley at the foot of the mountain where the old castle had been built.

After the Turkish wars this new building was expanded and in the 18th century it got a uniform facade. For a long time the castle was owned by the Habsburgs and was used as domicile by Archduke Leopold Ludwig. The renowned architect Theophil Hansen designed the castle.

Hernstein Castle is one of the largest seminar hotels in Austria and is only available to seminar participants. Therefore it ensures a tranquil atmosphere of learning and working. Hernstein Castle has 74 modern bedrooms. Room amenities include sky and satellite TV, a minibar, work desk, and wireless internet.

Address:  Seminarhotel Schloss Hernstein, Berndorfer Strasse 32, 2560 Hernstein. Telephone:+43-2633 472510

Weather                      Activities in Austria


The Vienna International Airport (VIE) is about 60 km from Schloss Hernstein or about 1 hour by car.

Driving Directions

By Train:  The S-Bahn (Rapid Transit) is an easy, economical means of travel between the airport and the Vienna Main Train Station (Wien Hauptbahnhof).  Railjet leaves every 30 min. for this 15 min. ride.  You can then take a RailEurope train from Vienna to Leobersdorf and then a taxi to Hernstein. Be certain to print out the map and directions in case the taxi driver in Vienna is not familiar with the rural area where Schloss Hernstein is located.

Conference Fees and Registration

Coming soon!

General Information About ECI

Engineering Conferences International (ECI) is a global engineering conferences program, originally established in 1962, that provides opportunities for the exploration of problems and issues of concern to engineers and scientists from many disciplines.

The format of the weeklong research conference provides morning and late afternoon or evening sessions in which major presentations are made. Available time is included during the afternoons for ad hoc meetings, informal discussions, and/or recreation. This format is designed to enhance rapport among participants and promote dialogue on the development of the meeting. We believe that the conferences have been instrumental in generating ideas and disseminating information to a greater extent than is possible through more conventional forums.

All participants are expected both to attend the entire conference and to contribute actively to the discussions. The recording/photographing of lectures and presentations is forbidden. As ECI conferences take place in an informal atmosphere, casual clothing is the usual attire.

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