Recipient of a Travel Grant to attend the International Symposium on Ligaments and Tendons (ISL&T)-X

Dr. Matthew Fisher and Dr. Ho-Joong Jung

I had the opportunity to attend the International Symposium on Ligaments & Tendons (ISL&T) – X in Hong Kong in early February 2010. I spent my first day with the group led by Dr. Kai-Ming Chan, the conference chair, at the Prince of Wales Hospital. I was impressed by the number of assistants working in Dr. Chan’s office. There must have been 8-10 helping out for the conference. Following some additional planning for the conference, I went to Dim Sum nearby with Dr. Pauline Lui and her research group. Lunch was very good. I refuse to eat the chicken feet, but they convince me to try tripe (cow stomach). The taste is not bad, but the texture is rubbery and slimy at the same time. I did manage to swallow one bite, but that’s all. The eating customs were interesting in that it is a very communal eating style. If your plate is empty, your company will assume you want more and place food on your plate without asking.

In the afternoon, I spent some time discussing research with Dr. Lui and her group. Their research interests are mainly in the area of tendinopathy. Afterward, I met with Dr. Daniel Fong’s group, which focuses on clinical biomechanics. Later, we check out the meeting space for the conference. It was a nice auditorium, with very professional banners and wall posters in the registration and break areas.

The next day was the ISL&T-X conference. Dr. Woo and Dr. Chan gave the day a lively start. The audience was very diverse with the majority from Asia, however, there were significant numbers from the U.S. as well as Europe. Overall, the presentations were high quality. My presentation entitled “A Novel Extracellular Matrix Bioscaffold Can Enhance ACL Healing” was well received. The keynote lectures were also very educational. As is the custom at ISL&T, a banquet followed the presentations. It was a very traditional Hong Kong style dinner, with 11-12 courses in total, including an entire fish (with the head) served on a plate.

ISL&T Banquet
ISL&T Banquet

One new event at ISL&T-X was an additional half day with lectures specifically geared toward students and a time for lively discussion of hot topics in the field, including tendinopathy and ACL reconstruction. Dr. Woo gave a very entertaining lecture entitled, “How to Write a Good Paper.” The lectures were followed by an ASIAM fundraiser luncheon that included several former Musculoskeletal Research Center (MSRC) fellows, including Drs. Christos Papageorgiou, Chih-Hwa Chen, Yin-Chih Fu, Ping-Cheng Liu, Yuji Yamamoto, Guoan Li, Wei-Shui Hsu, James Wang, Xianna Guo, and Hiromichi Fujie. In the evening, we traveled to Lan Kwai Fong to take in some nightlife.

I would like to thank ASIAM Institute for their generous support which allowed me to attend ISL&T-X. It was an educational experience from start to finish.