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Home Annual Meeting Meeting Program Biological Sciences Program
Biological Sciences Program

The Biological Sciences (BS) Program is designed for researchers and professionals with interests in the biological processes that underlie aging. Symposium and poster sessions will address the aging process at the molecular, cellular, and organismal level, as well as the specific disease conditions that are related to, or that accompany, the aging process.  

View the biological sciences program for the 2014 Annual Scientific Meeting below. Please note, new this year, individuals were invited to submit a paper or poster ONLY (no symposia submissions) to the biological sciences section. *Additional speakers/sessions will be organized based on submitted abstracts that fit in with the below themes.  Every effort will be made to include speakers from the Emerging Scholar & Professional Organization (ESPO). The Biological Sciences, Health Sciences, and Social Research, Policy and Practice Sections will jointly sponsor a “Late Breaker” Poster Session; details will be available in July.

View the 2013 program to peruse sessions from last year's conference; providing a preview to the wide range of biological science sessions that take place during GSA’s Annual Scientific Meeting.

2014 Biological Sciences Program

*Subject to change.

Organized by the GSA Biological Sciences Section
GSA Annual Scientific Meeting, Washington, DC, Nov 5-9, 2014
From the Basic Biology of Aging to Healthspan Interventions

"We have several exciting symposia planned for the 2014 Annual Scientific Meeting that build directly on the theme and momentum of the 2013 conference, “From the Basic Biology of Aging to Healthspan Interventions”.  The sessions will present results from current approaches designed to promote healthspan and highlight studies on mechanisms underlying age-associated dysfunction that may provide new potential targets and strategies for intervention." - Charlotte A. Peterson, PhD, Chair, Biological Sciences Section

Presidential Symposium

This symposium, jointly sponsored with the HS Section (Ronald Shorr, Chair), will focus on knowledge gained from large cohort studies (i.e. HealthABC, Life, Baltimore Longitudinal Study).  Success from these translational studies in enabling basic scientists to begin to design experiments to understand underlying mechanisms of aging, so called “reverse translation,” will be discussed by Tamara Harris, Bret Goodpaster, Roger Fielding and Luigi Ferrucci. 

Aging Intervention Testing

This session, chaired by Richard Miller, aims to present the key accomplishments, newest results, and key future goals for this NIA-supported program that tests drugs to find agents that can extend lifespan in genetically heterogeneous mice.  Agents that are found to increase mouse lifespan, such as rapamycin, are then evaluated further, in follow-up studies, to look for beneficial effects on age-sensitive markers of health; to test ideas and the cellular and physiological control of aging; and to learn more about the mechanisms by which the drugs act to prolong healthspan. 

Exercise as Medicine*

There is intense interest at both the basic science and clinical levels in the cellular and molecular mechanisms through which exercise counteracts the effects of aging. Several symposia will highlight new findings on mechanisms underlying changes in muscle mitochondrial function, and other benefits of exercise as an intervention for aging.  Participants: Marcas Bamman, Mark Tarnopolsky, Kevin Conley and invited speakers from submitted abstracts.

Protein Homeostasis*

Aging in many tissues results in the accumulation of misfolded and aggregation-prone proteins that are poorly degraded. This session will focus on the effects of age on cellular processes, such as authophagy, that alter protein homeostasis and their contribution to the aging phenotype and aging-related diseases.Participants: Ladora Thompson, Ana Maria Cuervo, Aaron Gitler, and invited speaker from submitted abstracts.

Inflammation and Aging*

Much of the aging phenotype, including immunosenescence, can be explained by an imbalance between inflammatory and anti-inflammatory networks, resulting in a low grade chronic inflammatory state. Recent advances in understanding these networks, as well as potential interventions to reduce chronic inflammation in different tissues, will be discussed. Participants:  George Taffett, James Kirkland, Donna Wilcock, Todd Trappe, and invited speaker from submitted abstracts.

Variability in Response to Interventions to Extend Healthspan*

Aging is associated with increased variability in response to exercise, nutritional supplements and drug treatment, likely influenced by an individual’s genetic makeup, revealed through genomic, proteomic, metabolomic, or epigenomic profiling. Recent advances in understanding variability in response to interventions to promote healthy aging and prevent age-associated disease will be described.  Charlotte Peterson will lead the session that will include invited speakers from submitted abstracts.

Geroscience - Aging Biology as the Common Risk Factor for Chronic Diseases

This symposium will focus on the emerging field of geroscience, an interdisciplinary field that aims to understand the relationship between the basic biology of aging and age-related diseases. A central concept of geroscience is that multiple human diseases arise from a common cause, aging itself. Progress in the development of new tools, models and paradigms that address the basic biological underpinnings of these multiple diseases will be discussed.  Felipe Sierra will lead the session. 

USC DavisThe Annual Scientific Meeting website is sponsored by the USC Davis School of Gerontology. For more information on programs, please visit