2015 Grand Copthorne Waterfront Hotel, Singapore (18-23 January 2015)

Overview of 2015 Round

The enthusiasm of the participants and the high scientific quality of the lectures made the 2015 NIF Winter School an extremely successful event. Throughout the days of the program, from 18th to 23rd January, lecturers and students shared intriguing insights and findings in immunology, discussed new ideas and forged friendships that fuelled networking and future collaborations.

This was the fourth year of the NIF Winter School – a partnership between the IFREC Institute in Japan and SIgN in Singapore - and the second time that was held in Singapore. The course selected a group of 50 excellent students from 17 different countries out of 180 applicants, and was able to attract a prominent international group of Immunology Faculty from the US (2), Europe (4), Japan (4), Australia (3) and Singapore (3).

The Grand Copthorne Waterfront Hotel located within easy reach of the Central Business District and the waterfront precincts of Robertson Quay, Clarke Quay and Boat Quay along Singapore River was an ideal environment for the school. There was also a chance to explore Singapore during a free afternoon, and many participants chose to extend their stay to take advantage of the trip and enjoy the local culture.

We hope that the Winter School experience made a strong impact in all participants, widened and deepened their understanding of immunology, created many new friendships, and furthered their commitment to excellence in scientific research.

Date and Venue

18-23 January 2015
Grand Copthorne Waterfront Hotel, Singapore

Application and Selection

We received 180 applications for NIF 2015 Winter School from 41 countries. Organizing committee carefully shortlisted all applications and 50 applications were selected based on scientific excellence. 2 applicants withdrew at last minute due to personal reasons, so final number of students was 48. Participants of 25 nationalities came from institutes & universities in 17 countries of 5 continents. 39 of them were advanced PhD students; 11 were early postdocs. Most of the participants were 24-34 years old. 70% of the participants were female.

2015 Program

The scientific program comprised of 16 guest lectures, participants' short presentations and poster sessions. Each participant presented a poster during one of the poster sessions and gave a short oral presentation as well. The short talks and lectures were grouped according to the topic.


Shizuo AKIRA, IFReC, Japan
Facundo BATISTA, London Research Institute, UK
Burkhard BECHER, University of Zurich, Switzerland
Yasmine BELKAID, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, USA
Frank CARBONE, The University of Melbourne, Australia
James DI SANTO, Institut Pasteur, France
Nicholas GASCOIGNE, National University of Singapore, Singapore
Tomohiro KUROSAKI, IFReC, Japan
Ana-Maria LENNON-DUMÉNIL, INSERM/Institut Curie, France
Kenneth MURPHY, Howard Hughes Medical Institute, USA
Shalin NAIK, Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research, Australia
Evan NEWELL, Singapore Immunology Network, Singapore
Laurent RÉNIA, Singapore Immunology Network, Singapore
Shimon SAKAGUCHI, IFReC, Japan
Mark SMYTH, QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute, Australia
Kiyoshi TAKEDA, IFReC, Japan

Presentation Award Laureates

Three "Best Presentation" prizes were awarded to:

Francisca FERREIRA DE ALMEIDA - Singapore Immunology Network, Singapore
"Identification of Potential T cell Progenitors in the Adult Epidermis"

Yonit LAVIN - Mount Sinai, USA
"Tissue Macrophage Enhancer Landscapes are Shaped by Ontogeny and the Local Microenvironment"

Yochai WOLF - Weizmann Institute of Science, Israel
"Studying Microglia in Context"

Messages from the Participants

"It was a very inspiring cohort of researchers, I learnt a lot about the science that is conducted across the world."

"Great time and structure."

"Fantastic and relaxing setting for students to interact with invited speakers and participants around the globe."

"The lectures are all leading scientists in their fields. They brought the latest advances to us."

"People discuss a lot, it's excellent!"

"Had a great time meeting and discussing science with faculty and students."

"Organizers were very helpful and accommodating."

"It was a pleasure to attend this 4th NIF Winter School thank you very much!"

Organizing Committee

Laurent RÉNIA (SIgN) – Chair of the 2015 committee
Florent GINHOUX (SIgN) - committee member
Siew Cheng WONG (SIgN) - committee member
Katja FINK (SIgN) - committee member
Nicholas GASCOIGNE (NUS) - committee member
Klaus KARJALAINEN (NTU) - committee member

Photo Album


Organizer title