In contrast to the outside dull and gray weather conditions, BPS meeting is buzzing with activity today. Even as you walk the streets of the city, you see people with yellow string tags crowding the bars and cafes all along. As you step in the Moscone center, you see people walking briskly towards the rooms where they are about to attend the talks of their interest or people sitting scanning the green colored BPS meeting book sorting their itineraries.
My morning starting crisp and sharp as I headed towards the cardiac muscle symposium in Room 304. The very first talk contrasted STED (a new imaging technique) with confocal microscopy, showing beautiful pictures of imaged t-tubules, showing the sharper images you get with STED and the better resolution you get being able to capture the z-plane as well. A lot more people have trickled in the room by this time and it is beginning to getting cramped. The second talk was from Dr. Poggessi's lab in Italy by Cecilia highlighting novel experiments looking at the impact of loss of t-tubules on cardiac muscle function. It was a very interesting talk. Following this was a FT-ICR mass spectrometry talk by Dr. Alan Marshalls group showing deuterated water exchange studies on the troponin complex in calcium free and calcium bound state. By now the room was super crowded and people were sitting on the floors.
The next talk kind of zoomed by really fast as the multiple structural conformations of troponin complex simulations were talked about. The simulations were picoseconds to nanoseconds long. Cool electrostatic mapping of the structures revealed positive charged areas which allow repositioning of molecular lobes within Tn complex. The next few talks focused on the specific mutations in either tropomyosin, troponinC, which altered the cross-bridge cycling kinetics and showed altered calcium sensitivity. The platform session concluded with a very interesting talk showing the Drosophila wing heart m-mode echocardiography videos studying the an UNC-45 knockdown mutation and its effects.
It was an intense session marred only by the fact that the room was very crowded and some people were denied entry because of over crowding!