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On-line version ISSN 1678-8060
Mem. Inst. Oswaldo Cruz vol.101 suppl.1 Rio de Janeiro Oct. 2006
In the present year, when the Schistosomiasis Program celebrates 20 years, the state of Minas Gerais, particularly the city of Belo Horizonte, is pround to hold the 10th edition of the International Symposium on Schistosomiasis. To me, it has been an honor and privilege to coordinate the team who made every effort to make the arrangements for such event. Between September 25 and 28, 2005, the attention of all colleagues who work with investigations on schistosomiasis will be focused on the capital of Minas Gerais, as, here, in Belo Horizonte, the most important world event on schistosomiasis will be taking place. The Frontiers of Research on Schistosomiasis is the central theme of the Symposium, on which researchers from 11 different countries together with Brazilian colleagues will be exchanging data, experiences, knowledge, and planning collaborations. About 400 participants have supported the present event, among them 54 specialists, 29 Brazilian and 25 foreigners, have accepted the invitation from the Organizing Committee. As the Patron, we have chosen Dr Lobato Paraense, "the malacologist of the Americas", one of the most erudite and brilliant Brazilian investigators. A malacologist, whose scientific life makes further comments unnecessary.
Two facts should be underlined here: we are celebrating the 90th aniversary of Dr Lobato and the 50th year of the first study with which he has started systematization of Brazilian mollusks of the genus Biomphalaria. Another eminent scientist, Dr Giovanni Gazzinelli: his scientific contribution cannot be worded also; however, we must emphasize his great contribution to studies on Immunology to the Oswaldo Cruz Foundation (Fiocruz), particularly to the René-Rachou Research Center (CPqRR). Indeed, he has transformed the old Laboratory of Serology, making it efficient, regarding devices and new techniques, for investigations on cellular and molecular immunology. It is now, no doubt, one of the most productive laboratories in our Institution.
We thank Dr Paulo Buss, the President of Oswaldo Cruz Foundation (Fiocruz), Dr Paulo Gadelha, Dr Ary Carvalho de Miranda, and Dr Reinaldo Guimarães the Vice-President of Institutional Development and Work Management, the Vice-President of Reference and Environment, and the Vice-President of Research and Technological Development, respectively, for the indispensable support. We also thank CPqRR, Department of Science and Technology in Health of the Ministry of Health (Decit), the United Nations for Education, Science and Culture Organization (Unesco), the Financial Supporter for Studies and Researches (Finep), the World Health Organization (WHO), the National Council for Technological and Scientific Development (CNPq), the Foundation of Research Support of the state of Minas Gerais (Fapemig), the Secretary of Health of Belo Horizonte, Electric Central of Minas Gerais (Cemig), and Carl Zeiss.
The scientific encounters will include 15 round tables, including 60 presentations, 9 sessions of free themes with 72 works, 5 conferences, one panel session, including 78 works, and 2 courses.
The state of Minas Gerais and specially Belo Horizonte are honored by your attendance. The precious historical patrimony, mainly represented by the barroque art may be admired in the towns of Ouro Preto, Mariana, Sabará, and Congonhas, all located a few kilometers from Belo Horizonte. We cannot lose the opportunity to mention our famous cuisine and the traditional hospitality of the local people, who certainly will make your stay far more pleasant.
Welcome and thank you very much.
Omar S Carvalho