History
ACC, an Asian forum for chromosome communities:
a 17-year retrospective

by  Kiichi Fukui, Osaka University, Japan

When we look at Asian countries, with all their unique cultures and histories, we can be proud of our traditions, so different from country to a country. In contrast, science requires a certain degree of universality from us. However, until the end of 20th century, there was no such a common forum for chromosome science.

In 1998, while the 18th International Congress of Genetics was being held in Beijing, some chromosome researchers attending from Japan, China, Korea and Thailand, and who knew each other from previous international meetings, discussed the possibility of creating an Asian forum for chromosome researchers. An enthusiastic discussion followed and unanimously concluded with the decision to create a first Asian Chromosome Colloquium (ACC) to be held at Beijing. One of the reasons why an ACC was agreed upon is that there was already a long tradition of bilateral conferences between China and Japan initiated in 1987 at Beijing*1) and in 1992 at Tianjin*2) by Profs. Hao Shui (Northeast Normal Univ.), Chen Ruiyang, (Tianjin Univ.), Hong Deyuan (Inst. Botany, Academia Sinica) Ryuso Tanaka, Kenji Taniguchi, and Masashi Nakata (all at Hiroshima Univ.).

ACC1, the first Asian Chromosome Colloquium was initiated by mainly Chinese and Japanese collaboration. Three years have passed without much apparent activity, however, Chinese organizer Dr. Zhiyong Xin (Director General, Inst. Crop Breed. Cult., CAAS) and his local organizers led by Dr. Youzhi Ma (Inst. Crop Breed. Cult., CAAS) made concrete steps in turning ACC1 into reality.

The international side of ACC1 was coordinated by Prof. Kiichi Fukui (Osaka Univ.) and his national secretariat, Drs. Takefumi Sone (Osaka Univ.) and Toshiyuki Wako (Natl. Inst. Agrobiol. Resour.) who visited Beijing to assist their Chinese counterparts. In Sept. 27-29, 2001, at the beginning of 21st century, over 120 chromosome researchers gathered at the Beijing International Conference Center under the unifying theme of “Chromosome Science in the New Millennium”. All the foreign participants were impressed by the valuable presentations and enthusiastic discussion; they also greatly enjoyed the delicious traditional Chinese cuisine. The first proceedings of the ACC were published under the editorship of Prof. Fukui and Dr. Xin in 2002*3).




The second ACC (ACC2) was held at the International Culture Center of Chungnam University, Daejeon, Korea in May 20-22, 2004; the colloquium organizers were Profs. Jae-Wook Bang (Chungnam Natl. Univ.) and Yasuhiko Mukai (Osaka Kyoiku Univ.). ACC2 was held under the theme of “Chromosome Science in Post-Genome Era” with Prof. David M. Stelly (Texas A&M Univ., USA) as a guest speaker. Over 60 researchers and students gathered and enthusiastically discussed many topics in chromosome science. They also enjoyed delicious traditional Korean cuisine, which has become something of a good tradition of the ACC. The second proceedings were published under the editorship of Profs. Bang and Mukai in 2006*4).




ACC3 was held at MO Hall, Osaka University, Japan in Dec. 1-3, 2008, with over 170 participants from Japan, China, Korea, India, Turkey, Russia, Thailand, Philippines, Iraq, Indonesia, etc. Thus ACC3 was long remembered for the reason that the number of Asian nationalities attending was greatly expanded, reflecting the growth of the Asian region. The theme of ACC3 was “Development of Chromosome Research Network in Asia”. The organizers were Prof. Kenji Taniguchi (Hiroshima Univ.) and Dr. Xueyong Zhang (ICS, CAAS) with three executive secretariats of Dr. Youzhi Ma (ICBC, CAAS), Profs. Yoichi Matsuda (Hokkaido Univ.), and Takuto Koba (Chiba Univ.). All the participants enjoyed not only interesting presentations and discussion but, as usual, delicious traditional local cuisine. The proceedings of ACC3 was published under the editorship of Prof. Taniguchi and Dr. Zhang*5).





ACC4 returned to the home of ACC, Beijing, and was held at a resort hotel at Xiangshan in Beijing, where the first Sino-Japanese Symposium on Plant Chromosomes had been held in 1987. The colloquium was held in Oct. 11-14, 2010 with more than 200 participants. The theme was “Advances in Chromosome Sciences” and the organizer was Prof. Zhensheng Li (former Vice President, CAS) with executive secretaries Profs. Youzhi Ma and Xueyong Zhang (ICS, CAAS). All the participants greatly appreciated the organizer's heartfelt welcome and the smooth organization of the colloquium; they also enjoyed the delicious modernized Chinese cuisine on offer.




Looking back these seventeen years and forward to ACC5 to be held in Bangkok in 2015, we can be very proud of our good tradition in serving as a forum for chromosome researchers within Asian countries by providing venues for meetings, discussion, and local specialties. The professors and doctors who have contributed much to the organization of past ACCs are, however, now retiring. ACC5 will take place at a new venue, where we wish new members with new ideas to join the ACC. We do hope that you, young researchers and students that participate in ACC5, will evolve a new style of ACC, one that is perhaps more fitting to the new Asian era of science and technology, by learning something from the past history of the ACC.



References

  1. Hong Deyuan, ed. 1989. Plant Chromosome Research 1987, Proceedings of the Sino-Japanese Symposium on Plant Chromosomes held at Beijing, China, October 6-11, 1987, Published by Organizing Committee Sino-Japan. Symp. Plant Chrom., Nishiki Print Co., Hiroshima, p.437.

  2. Ryuso Tanaka, ed. 1994. Plant Chromosome Research 1992, Proceedings of the Second Sino-Japanese Symposium on Plant Chromosomes held at Tianjin, China, November 1-6, 1992, Published by Organizing Committee Second Sino-Japan. Symp. Plant Chrom., International Academic Publishers, Beijing, p.482.

  3. Kiichi Fukui and Zhiyong Xin, eds. 2002. Advances in Chromosome Sciences vol. 1. Chromosome Sciences in the New Millennium. China Agricultrual Science and Technology Press, Beijing. p.485.

  4. Jae-Wook Bang and Yasuhiko Mukai, eds. 2006. Advances in Chromosome Sciences vol. 2. Chromosome Sciences in the post Genome Era. Daeheung Press Inc., Daejeon. p.203.

  5. Kenji Taniguchi and Xueyong Zhang, eds. 2010. Advances in Chromosome Sciences vol. 3. Development of Chromosome Research Network in Asia. The Chromosome Colloquium, Japan and The Society of Chromosome Research, Hiroshima. p.196.