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|Feng Liu Candidate Statement|
Professor, State Key Laboratory of Membrane Biology
Institute of Zoology, Chinese Academy of Sciences (Beijing, China)
Since the year of 2009 when I came back to set up my own lab in China, I have devoted much time to helping organize national zebrafish meeting, Asia-Pacific zebrafish meeting, and other scientific meetings. For instance, together with Prof. Anming Meng, I successfully organized the 5th Asia-Oceania Zebrafish Meeting in Beijing in 2011. We have seen over 80 zebrafish PIs from Japan, Korea, Singapore, India and China at this regional meeting and received positive feedback about conference organization from the participants. In addition, I have been also involved in the organization of the China Zebrafish meeting for four times since 2010 with over 500 attendees joining us at the latest one in 2015.
To attract more young scientists (including junior faculties, postdocs, and students) into this field, Prof. Anming Meng and myself, with the support of Zeiss, launched a Zeiss-China Zebrafish Society Science Award in 2015. Over 20 young scientists have been awarded since then with the total amount of 200,000 RMB. As a member of Board for the China Zebrafish Resource Center (CZRC) since 2012, I have made significant contributions to persuade zebrafish researchers to send their home-made zebrafish lines and reagents into the center, aiming to develop a national resource center for shared use to benefit the whole community.
Other than organizing the regional and domestic conferences, I am also a strong advocate for broader international communication. To make more Chinese scientists actively involved in benefit from such communication, Anming Meng, Han Wang, and myself, have discussed with the IZFS committee, specially Brant and Mary, and proposed to hold the 2019 International Zebrafish Meeting in China. This would be the very first time for the Chinese Zebrafish researchers to attend this prestigious conference in their homeland. Given the huge population of scientists working on Zebrafish in China, I believe this will be a great chance to build strong bond between the Chinese scientists and their international peers and further grow the IZFS to be even stronger and more influential internationally.
China Zebrafish Society was officially established in 2016 and has nearly 500 members currently, representing one of the biggest national zebrafish societies in the world. As the current President of China Zebrafish Society (2016-2020), I strongly believe that the International Zebrafish Society (IZFS) should have at least one or several members from China acting as board officer and regional directors, to represent over 150 zebrafish principal investigators in China. As the most rapidly developing region in the world, China has been investing heavily in building up strong science for both basic and translational research. Since the year of 2000, China has seen a great surge in zebrafish studies, and the laboratories using zebrafish as the main research model have been increasing dramatically to reach nearly 150 zebrafish labs now. In the year of 2015/2016, the total number of zebrafish publications in China, for the first time, reached the half of that in USA and many of them were published in high-profile journals such as Cell, Immunity, Neuron, Developmental Cell, and Development, etc.
As a nominee for IZFS, I hope I can contribute more to the society to truly reflect the ‘international’ nature of the zebrafish community, and will devote myself to encourage more Chinese scientists using the zebrafish model for various explorations from early development, organogenesis, to disease models and translational medicine. By doing so, I hope our IZFS society will bear more influence in promoting broader communication and collaboration to facilitate a wide application of zebrafish model in life science.