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The Symposia, 1933 — 2003

2002:   The Cardiovascular System, Vol. LXVII

Organizer: Bruce Stillman

Table of Contents

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The Cold Spring Harbor Symposium on Quantitiative Biology has rarely been devoted to a single organ. One notable exception was the successful Symposium in 1990 on the brain, which marked in part President Bush’s proclamation of the 1990s as the decade of the brain, and also the beginning of the current Cold Spring Harbor initiative in neuroscience. There has been no presidential pronouncement about the heart, and Cold Spring Harbor has not focused research on it, but there have been remarkable developments in molecular understanding of the cardiovascular system over the last decade. It seemed fitting, therefore, that this year’s Symposium should focus on such an important biological topic.

Development of the cardiovascular system during embryogenesis is a

major area of research, particularly the patterning that forms the branches of the peripheral blood and lymphatic systems and development of the heart itself. The Symposium made clear that there is now a good general understanding of how the system develops. An equally important area of inquiry was the signaling pathways that permit the cardiovascular system to maintain its function. And cardiovascular disease, the western world’s most common cause of death, also received appropriate attention.

Jan A. Witkowski

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