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2006 IMSC17 Conference Report
Prague, Czech Republic

The 17th International Mass Spectrometry Conference was held in the Prague Congress Center, Prague, Czech Republic. It was prepared by the National Organising committee in cooperation with the Executive Committee of the International Mass Spectrometry Society, the I. Marcus Marci Czech Spectroscopic Society, and the Institute of Microbiology, Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic. The National Organising Committee consisted of 16 members, with Professor Zdenek Herman (J. Heyrovský Institute of Physical Chemistry, Acad. Sci.) as the Chair, Professor Vladimír Havlíček (Institute of Microbiology, Acad.Sci.) as Vice-Chair and Treasurer, and Dr. Petr Halada (Institute of Microbiology, Acad.Sci.) as Secretary.

Total number of registered participants was 1847, representing the total of 48 countries. The highest number of participants was from the United Kingdom, from the USA, from Germany, and from the Czech Republic. Among the participants there were almost 400 students whose participation was enabled in many cases by generous travel grants from the International Mass Spectrometry Society.

Scientific Programme
Close to 1000 abstracts were received for the 17th IMSC and the final Scientific Programme consisted of 2 Tutorial Lectures (H. Schwarz, N. Kelleher), 6 Plenary Lectures (P. Crutzen, D. Hunt, A. W. Castleman, A. Aguzzi, J. L. Beauchamp, W. Thiel), and 32 Keynote Lectures accompanied by 96 Oral Contributions and presented in the respective sessions. In addition, there were 3 training courses, 9 workshops, and numerous Exhibitor seminars.

Authors of Plenary and Keynote Lectures were invited to submit their lectures for publication in the Advances in Mass Spectrometry and we are grateful to all those who did so. Abstracts of all Oral and Poster presentations were made available to all participants in the Abstract Book of the 17th IMSC and they are freely available in electronic form on the web site of the International Mass Spectrometry Foundation.

Social Programme
The conference started on Sunday, 27 August, with an Official Opening, followed by a performance of the Black Light Theater and a cocktail mixer, available for all delegates. Wednesday afternoon was free for sightseeing tours in which buses with guides took the participants through the historical monuments of the City of Prague. The Conference dinner took place Thursday evening close to Prague, in the medieval surroundings of the Fortress of Dřevčice, and included a rich and colorful entertainment and fireworks. About 800 participants took part in it. Besides that, on Monday evening the speakers of the 17th IMSC were received by the representative of the City of Prague in the Residence of the Mayor of Prague. On Tuesday evening a Dinner was organized for the members of the IMSC Governing Committee and the IMSC Executive Committee in the Restaurant Mlýnec by the Charles Bridge.

Excellence Awards
During the International Mass Spectrometry Conferences three types of awards have been traditionally distributed.

The Thomson Medal Award 2006 was presented to three distinguished mass spectrometrists, to John H. Bowie (University of Adelaide, Australia), to Michael L. Gross (Washington University, St. Louis, Missouri, U.S.A.), and to Michael Karas (Johann Wolfgang Goethe University in Frankfurt, Germany).

The Curt Brunnée Award (sponsored by Thermo Electron Corporation), for achievements in instrumentation by a scientist under 45 years of age, was presented this time to Roman Zubarev, University of Uppsala, Sweden.

Five Awards of the Journal of Mass Spectrometry (sponsored by John Wiley & Sons), for best contributions in mass spectrometry by young scientists, were given in 2006 to David Touboul (ICSN-CNRS, France), Kerryn E. Mason (Children, Youth and Women Health Service, Australia), Bethny Morrissey (University of Sydney, Australia), Brendan Prideaux (Sheffield Hallam University, UK), and Michael Volný (University of Washington, Seattle, USA). The awards were connected, as usual, with a symposium with presentations of all winners.

Commercial Participation
The 17th IMSC had a rich participation of 39 exhibitors presenting their products during the conference and organizing special meetings and seminars.

Closing Remarks
The IMSS Executive Committee informed the members of the IMSS Governing Board of changes required for present legal registration of the organization. From now on, the name of the International Mass Spectrometry Society changes to "International Mass Spectrometry Foundation" (IMSF) and the members of the IMSS Governing Board form now the "Meeting of Affiliates". The IMSF Executive Board is in charge of the IMSF. 

For the period 2006-2009 the members of the IMSF Executive Board will be: John Traeger (La Trobe University, Melbourne, Australia), President; John. J. Monaghan (University of Edinburgh, UK), Past-President; Marcos Eberlin (University of Campinas, Brasil), Vice-President-Foundation; Jürgen Grotemeyer (University of Kiel, Germany), Vice-President-Conferences; Dietmar Kuck (University of Bielefeld, Germany), Treasurer; Cathy Costello (Boston University, USA), Secretary; Einar Uggerud (University of Oslo, Norway), A-Region Representative; Yoshino Wada (Osaka University, Japan), Region B-Representative; Paul Mayer (University of Ottawa, Canada), Region C-Representative.

The 18th International Mass Spectrometry Conference will be held in 2009 in Bremen, Germany, and will be chaired by Professor Jürgen Grotemeyer. The Meeting of Affiliates decided that the location of the Conference in 2012 will be Kyoto, Japan.

Finally, I wish to thank all who helped to make the 17th IMSC in Prague such a success.

Zdenek Herman
Chairman of the 17th IMSC
J. Heyrovský Institute of Physical Chemistry
Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic
Czech Republic

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