American Society of Andrology.

Newsletter, Volume 1

President’s Message, Summer 2015

Dear Colleagues,

First, I would like to express my gratitude to all of you who gave me the opportunity to become the President of ASA. I am deeply honored to serve our community. I am confident that with your help and the guidance of the Executive Council, composed of Drs. Jacquetta Trasler (secretary), Rex Hess (treasurer), Jay Sandlow (past president) and Mary Lee (vice-president), and with the assistance of Ms. Donna Rostamian (Weiser & Associates), we will be able to advance the goals of our society.

Through my years on the Council and this past year as vice-president and president-elect, I have gained a deep appreciation of the vision, contributions and diligence of the past presidents of our society. My years as a member and later on as a committee member taught me that ASA is not just a society but a community composed of volunteers and friends with common scientific interests who, beyond the Annual meeting, keep communicating throughout the year. ASA is the hub for our scientific exchanges; and Andrology, the journal of the society, is our publication forum. We should strive to publish some of our best work in Andrology.

The 2015 meeting in Salt Lake City, the 40th annual meeting of ASA, with the theme “A Lifetime of Male Reproductive Health” was a success, both from scientific and financial points of view. We should thank Bill Wright and Ed Kim who, together with the Program Committee, put together an excellent scientific program, as well as Jay Sandlow (past president) who oversaw the organization of the meeting. The accompanying Testis Workshop on the theme “Healthy Sperm – Healthy Children” was also a scientific and financial success, and we should thank the organizers, Drs. Jacquetta Trasler and Leslie Heckert.

I am hopeful that the 41st ASA meeting at New Orleans will be another successful meeting, both in content and audience. Almost a year ago, I appointed Drs. Robert Viger and Arthur (Bud) Burnett as program chairs for the 2016 meeting. Robert and Bud put together an outstanding committee and organizing what will be an exciting scientific program, spanning basic sciences to the clinic. Please mark your calendars for April 2-5, 2016 to meet at the Astor Crown Plaza Hotel in New Orleans. Despite some unavoidable overlap with the Endocrine Society meeting, I hope to see all of you in New Orleans.

Last year, I assessed the composition and work of the various ASA committees so that upon becoming the president I was able to replace committee chairs whose terms were ending. I would like to thank all those who sent me recommendations. Your suggestions and the willingness of most of our colleagues to serve, allowed me to appoint the new chairs. They already have brought together their committees and have sent updates to be presented at our mid-term council on October 17 in Chicago. If you have any comments or suggestions, please feel free to communicate with me. If needed, there is opportunity for your comments to be brought up at our mid-term council meeting. I also take this opportunity to thank both past committee chairs for their work and new chairs for the work that they are already doing.

The society awards program is a very important means by which to recognize colleagues who have demonstrated scientific excellence and service. Your input is critical in the selection process of new awardees, and I encourage you to submit your nominations as soon as the announcements are made. Moreover, nominations for officers and council members will be soon out. ASA needs your input and ideas. I am glad to report that our endowment and fundraising efforts, led by the tireless efforts of Susan Rothmann, are reaching the goals that were set up. Your contributions and those of your friends and acquaintances are critical for ASA to offer trainee awards and travel grants, and to bring high caliber clinicians and scientists from around the world to present at our meeting.

When people ask me about what worries me the most about ASA, my answer is the same one given by presidents of all scientific societies: membership. The availability of limited funding for research in the western world has resulted in our having to make tough choices about the societies to which we belong and meetings that we attend. To retain our membership, we have to be offer high value to current and prospective members and to their research groups. ASA is a young (only 40 year- old) dynamic society built on real exchange between basic and clinician scientists aimed to answer questions dealing with the male.

ASA is a financially healthy society with international membership and many dedicated members. Over 100 members every year participate in the various ASA committees. The society recognizes excellence in young and senior investigators and trainees. The society also values service to the community as an essential factor. ASA leadership over the years has effectively helped with travel expenses for trainees so that participating members can bring with them interested students and fellows. This is essential for the recruitment of new members and for maintaining the Society’s vitality for the future. ASA offers an annual meeting with an excellent scientific program at affordable locations.

I believe that ASA membership is of great value, and I encourage you all to renew and ask your trainees and colleagues to join. Andrology is viewed as a specialty area of research and practice. However, Andrology deals with health and disease issues affecting many tissues in the body beyond the male reproductive tissues, and also deals with behavior. It also applies to half the population, and thereby affects the other half as well. Let’s claim our rightful place in biomedical research and practice, and let’s bring colleagues with interest in the male to join our community.

Thank you for your support.

Vassilios Papadopoulos, DPharm, PhD
President, ASA
(vassilios.papadopoulos@mcgill.ca)

ASA 41st Annual Meeting

“Old Dogmas, New Ideas: The Changing Landscape in Andrology”
April 2 – 5, 2016

Greetings from the co-chairs of the American Society of Andrology (ASA) 2016 Annual Meeting Scientific Program Committee!

On behalf of the Program Committee, we are pleased to provide some highlights of Scientific Program for the upcoming 41st Annual ASA Meeting to be held in the beautiful city of New Orleans, Louisiana, April 2-5, 2016. The Program Committee has put together an innovative and exciting slate of speakers and topics covering a broad area of both basic and clinical andrology. This year’s program theme is “Old Dogmas, New Ideas: The Changing Landscape in Andrology” and is meant to showcase recent new breakthroughs that have changed, are changing, or have the potential to change our thinking and understanding of andrology.

The 2016 Scientific Program will include traditional keynote lectures as well as a variety of basic science and clinical symposia. New to this year, however, will be the integration of the Trainee Directed Symposium (successfully initiated for the first time by the Trainee Affairs committee as a pre-symposium event in 2015) within the 2016 main annual meeting program schedule. We are delighted to have Dr. David Clapham (Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Boston Children’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School) as our keynote speaker. Dr. Clapham will be giving the Emil Steinberger Memorial Lecture and will be presenting his innovative work on the CatSper family of sperm specific calcium channels and their role in male fertility. In addition, the Program Committee has organized a strong contingent of lectures and symposium speakers that will be covering diverse aspects such as a discussion of fertility preservation in adolescent Klinefelter patients, the perspective of the urologist in the era of IVF/ICSI, clinical markers of gonadal function in prepuberty and puberty, environmental programming of the epigenome in paternal reproductive health, and the role of steroid binding proteins in the control of androgen action. Symposium topics will include novel therapies in andrology, somatic cells of the testis, germ cell/spermatogonial stem cell biology, and male reproductive tract/sperm biology. The 2016 ASA meeting will offer an exciting scientific program for all.

We look forward to welcoming you in New Orleans next spring!

Robert Viger, PhD
Arthur (Bud) Burnett, MD
Co-Chairs 2016 ASA Program Committee

Andrology Laboratory Workshop

“Restoring Sperm Morphology Relevance: a Consensus Workshop”
Saturday, April 2, 2016

Are you getting the information you want from your sperm morphology results? Do you think the new WHO morphology doesn’t provide useful information? Are you concerned that your laboratory might not “have it right”? This year’s Andrology Laboratory Workshop will set you straight! It is widely recognized that sperm morphology is the most difficult part of semen analysis to standardize. Participants in our workshop will classify sperm as usual, then learn a new approach, and practice to reach a consensus standardization. We plan to publish the results of this workshop. Don’t miss this groundbreaking event!

Written by Erma Drobnis, PhD, ASA Andrology Laboratory Workshop Chair

Basic Science Workshop

"ANDROmics: Genomics, Proteomics, and Epigenomics in understanding male reproduction”
Saturday, April 2, 2016

We hope you’ll join us for the 2016 Basic Science Workshop: "ANDROmics: Genomics, Proteomics, and Epigenomics in understanding male reproduction”!

This workshop is a great opportunity for trainees, research assistants, and lab leaders to share and learn about cutting edge techniques in andrology. Keep an eye out for the Call for Abstracts and Registration announcements in future newsletters! Contact Cristian O’Flaherty (cristian.oflaterty@mcgill.ca) or Elizabeth Snyder (elizabeth.snyder@jax.org) with any questions.”

Written by Elizabeth Snyder,PhD, ASA Basic Science Workshop Chair

2nd Annual Trainee-Directed Mini- Symposium

Sunday, April 3, 2016

The Trainee Affairs Committee is proud to announce the return of Trainee-Directed Mini-Symposium! The two trainee-elected representatives, Drs. Luke Simon and Mahmoud Aarabi, have led the charge in organizing the latest edition of this professional development event. Two sessions have been planned, one touching upon efficient writing of manuscripts, the other on the manuscript review process from various perspectives. This year, the Mini-Symposium has been integrated in the main program and will take place on Sunday April 3, 2016 from 4:30 pm – 6:30 pm prior to the Trainee Mixer during the Annual Meeting. The Trainee-Directed Mini-Symposium is intended for all basic scientists and clinicians attending the annual meeting, trainees and lab heads alike! We hope to see you there!

Written by Sophie La Salle , PhD, ASA Trainee Affairs Chair