The Biology of Calpains in Health and Disease

Conference Summary

This SRC brings together calpain researchers dedicated to elucidating the molecular, cellular and physiological functions of these proteases. Dysregulated calpain activity plays important roles in many diseases, including diabetes, muscular dystrophy, cardiovascular and pulmonary diseases, neurodegeneration and cancer. Calpains are a family of intracellular thiol-proteases with diverse biological functions associated with their ability to cleave a wide variety of proteins which regulate cellular processes including mitogenesis, migration, invasion, differentiation, membrane repair and programmed cell death. This has stimulated research aimed at elucidating the structures, functions and regulation of the 15 known mammalian calpain isoforms, as well as conserved isoforms from drosophila, nematodes and other species.  Growing evidence of calpain involvement in cancer, neurogeneration and cardiovascular disease in particular are inspiring efforts to develop novel calpain inhibitors. This conference brings together leading experts and trainees to present and discuss their latest unpublished findings, including identification of novel calpain substrates and elucidation of how calpain cleavage affects their functions; as well as examples of how dysregulated calpain activity contributes to diseases and preclinical model studies investigating how blocking calpain may provide therapeutic benefits.  Session topics will include: bioinformatics of calpain substrate identification; measuring calpain activity in vivo and in vitro; calpain in autophagy; calpain in programed cell death; calpains in neural development and degeneration; calpain in cardiovascular disease and aging; calpain in cancer; and calpastatin and other calpain inhibitors.  In addition to selected invited speakers, additional talks will be selected from abstracts. Poster sessions, meet the expert sessions and informal gatherings will provide ample opportunities to share ideas and establish new interactions.

View the Program Agenda

Important Deadlines:   Early Bird: June 2, 2016         Last Day to Register: June 17, 2016 


  • New evidence for calpain as an important therapeutic target in neurodegenerative diseases.
  • Pharmacologic inhibition of calpain suppresses organ atrophy and a number of other aging symptoms. 
  • Preclinical model studies showing disruption of calpain attenuates tumor growth and metastasis.  
  • The Darrel E. Goll Award for Scholarly Publication.
  • The Koichi Suzuki Award for the best Pre-doctoral Poster Presentation
  • The Takashi Murachi Award for the best Post-doctoral Poster Presentation  

Keynote Speakers

Chris Overall
University of British Columbia
“Proteogenomic approaches to explore protease functions”

Conference Organizers

Peter Greer
Queen's University

Kevin Wang
University of Florida

Athar Chishti
Tufts University

Conference Staff

Trina Eacho, Conference Coordinator
Pippa O'Shea, Conference Assistant

Contact us:
Email:  src@faseb.org   Phone: 1.301.634.7010

Date & Location

Date: July 17-22, 2016
Location: Mountain Mall, Mammoth Room
                 50 Big Sky Resort Road
                 Big Sky, MT

Transportation & Lodging

Airport Information

The closest airport to the Big Sky area is the Bozeman Yellowstone International Airport (BZN). The lodge is approximately one hour from the airport. Please visit the BZN site for more information.

Shuttle Service and car rentals are available.  Please use the link below for Transportation & Lodging information:

Official Conference Lodging

Big Sky Resort
Huntley Lodge
50 Big Sky Resort Road
Big Sky, MT 

Guest rooms are reserved for attendees at the Huntley Lodge.  All rooms have a private bath, free WiFi, high definition TV, coffee maker, refrigerator, and seating area.  Rooms do not include air conditioning. Onsite amenities include a spa, fitness center, tennis courts and outdoor pool.

If you request a single or a double occupancy room, the registration fee covers 5 nights of lodging (Sunday through Thursday night, checkout Friday morning). A credit card will be required upon check-in for incidental expenses (i.e. in-room movies, room service, etc.)

If you plan to arrive early or stay beyond the conference dates, you must make your own reservations for the extra nights you require. You are responsible for payment upon check-out.

Click here for additional Offsite Lodging.