28 - 31 March 2013 @ TIFR, Mumbai


This international conference will bring together pioneers and experts addressing fundamental questions in the fields of olfaction and taste, developmental neurobiology, and the organization of neural circuits that underlie behavior. These areas have seen enormous progress since the birth of behavioural neurogenetics as a discipline and the identification of the genetic basis for olfactory perception in Drosophila. Pioneering discoveries in both were made at Department of Biological Sciences at TIFR, Mumbai and the National Centre for Biological Sciences, where they continue to be strong areas of research. The delineation of the molecules (receptors, transducers, modulators) and the logic of circuits that underlie chemosensation that followed these pioneering discoveries have posed more interesting questions, such as the link between chemosensation, animal behaviour and ecology, and have given birth to the areas of pheromone biology and chemical ecology. They have also provided both tractable and attractive models for understanding the basis of plasticity, learning and memory.

The meeting will cover four broad categories: i) the genetics of chemosensation ii) the development of chemosensory structures, iii) circuits underlying chemosensory behaviour (smell, taste and the response to pheromones) and iv) the contributions of chemosensation to our understanding of learning and memory and iv) the links between chemosensation, pheromone biology and chemical ecology. The conference is first, an affirmation of the ongoing intense activity in these fields and their impact on contemporary biology and second, an opportunity to brainstorm about directions in which to expand. This will be facilitated by a strong interactive session on pheromone biology and chemical ecology. These emerging areas are of immense interest not only from a fundamental standpoint of understanding how animals interact with their environments but also impact agriculture (insect –plant interactions) and medicine (control of insect borne disease transmission), especially relevant in a country like India.   

The program will include research and perspective talks and interactive discussion sessions that will outline frontiers in these specific areas of research. We will have approximately 60 participants from around the world. We also hope to be able to hold a workshop towards the end of the meeting to facilitate more intense interactions and discussions that will include student participants actively engaged in research in these areas.



You can download the poster from here.