Supporting networking and collaborative research among early career scientists and clinicians.

21st Workshop on Vitamin D

JoEllen Welsh, University at Albany



The aims of the Annual Vitamin D Workshops are:

  1. To present and discuss the latest peer-reviewed scientific research regarding the production, metabolism and mechanisms of action of vitamin D. 
  2. To discuss the nutritional concerns of worldwide vitamin D deficiency and how best to identify, treat and prevent this condition.
  3. To examine the role of various vitamin D metabolites and analogs in prevention and treatment of specific diseases.
  4. To review the evidence on the adequate and safe levels of vitamin D that should be achieved/maintained in normal individuals and in those with disease states. 
  5. To provide a forum for sharing state of the art research approaches, from populations to genetically engineered mouse models to cell and molecular genomics.
  6. To foster scientific exchange between senior investigators, junior scientists and trainees in a welcoming atmosphere.

Funding from the Bioscientifica Trust will be utilised exclusively for the support of early-career researchers attending the event.  



Conference In Brief:

CONFERENCE CHAIR: Dr. Martin Hewison, University of Birmingham, UK

LOCATION: Barcelona Convention Center (CCIB), Barcelona, Spain

HEADQUARTERS HOTEL: Barcelona Princess, Avenue Diagonal, Forum area

ATTENDANCE: 262 delegates

PODIUM PRESENTATIONS: 52 (18 invited speakers, 34 promoted abstracts)

POSTER PRESENTATIONS: 133  (including 24 Plenary Posters)

FINANCIAL SUPPORT: 10 sponsors including Bioscientifica Trust

Please visit for additional details.

Summary:  The 21st Vitamin D Workshop convened May 16-19, 2018 in Barcelona Spain. The scientific program included 3 poster sessions, 2 keynote lectures, 16 invited speakers and 34 short talks chosen from submitted abstracts. Travel awards for junior scientists were supported by the NIH, Bioscientifica Trust and Heartland Assays. Winners were chosen based on abstract ranking (list of awardees is appended). Attendees had the opportunity to publish the research presented at the meeting in the Journal of Steroid Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. The Special Issue highlighting research presented at the Barcelona Congress is available online at


Attendee Feedback:   An extensive questionnaire on Survey Monkey was sent to all attendees after the 2018 conference.  To date, 143 attendees completed the survey (~55%). Below are the major results:

  • 85% rated the scientific sessions as Very Good or Excellent.
  • The four sessions deemed most valuable by participants were:
    • Vitamin D and Nutrition
    • New Functions of Vitamin D
    • Vitamin D and Cancer
    • Vitamin D and Immunology
  • 83% felt the organizers and meeting planners were Extremely or Very Helpful
  • 75% rated the venue (Barcelona Convention Center) as Excellent or Very Good
  • 50% indicated they would submit a full manuscript for the Conference Proceedings which will be published as a Special Issue of the Journal of Steroid Biochemistry and Molecular Biology

In addition, the survey allowed attendees to provide feedback on logistics (meeting schedule and format) and scientific sessions (topics, suggestions for underrepresented areas) which will be helpful in planning our next meeting.


Grant awarded: $6,000

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