The mechanics of life: from development to disease – Course and Conference Office

EMBO | EMBL Symposium

The mechanics of life: from development to disease


This conference will take place at EMBL Heidelberg, with the option to attend virtually.

Registration is not yet open for this event. If you are interested in receiving more information please register your interest.

Symposium overview

Environmental mechanics impact the behaviour of cells, which in turn modify their surroundings. These bi-directional cell-tissue interactions have important consequences for gene expression, cell fate and function and give rise to transient and permanent tissue modifications. These processes are key for immunity and homeostasis, but also play a role in pathological processes as they are critical for fibrosis, inflammation and cancer metastasis.

This symposium will focus on the interplay of cells with their environment and will bring together clinicians, cell biologists and material scientists interested in mechanobiology at the molecular, cellular and tissue level to approach its role in human physiology and pathology from different perspectives and scales. We will specifically discuss new technological approaches from the field of material sciences that enable the study of mechanobiology in vivo and in vitro, keeping in mind their potential use in a more applied context.

What past participants say about the Symposium

Very well organized conference. High-level talks. When you see an interesting topic for your research field and if it’s organized by EMBL: Don’t hesitate, go and enjoy!” – Xiuyu Wang, Université de Paris, France

This conference served as great platform for me to showcase my work and gain useful
comments and suggestions from the experts in my field. I benefitted especially from the
conference being mechanobiology-focused but not too narrow in its scope in that it also traversed multiple scales as well development and diseased conditions. This helped in networking with my peers and gaining crucial insight via expert talks. I am already looking forward to the next edition of this meeting.
” – Abhishek Mukherjee, National Institutes of Health, USA

As an early-stage PhD student, I have had a fantastic experience at this conference. It was an incredible opportunity to develop connections and hear about the innovative and creative research being conducted across the mechanobiology community.” – Rachel Mckeown, University of Cambridge, UK



Kate Poole

The University of New South Wales


Scientific Organisers

Prisca Liberali

Friedrich Miescher Institute for Biomedical Research



Sponsorship opportunities

We offer a variety of event sponsoring possibilities, with the flexibility to select a set sponsorship package or combine individual sponsorship options to suit your event budget. Discounts are available for companies sponsoring multiple events at EMBL Heidelberg. View other conferences, or contact sponsorship@embl.de for further information.

If you are interested in becoming a media partner of this event, please visit our media partnerships webpage.


EMBL wishes to warn sponsors of EMBL conferences and courses of fraudulent schemes purporting to offer sponsorship opportunities on behalf of EMBL or affiliated with EMBL officials. One current scam campaign of which we are aware is conducted using the name ‘Judy Eastman’ (judy@gopcontact.a2hosted.com) and entails approaches to sponsors offering sponsorship opportunities on EMBL’s behalf. Please be kindly advised that all relevant communication regarding sponsorship of EMBL conferences, symposia and courses is handled by EMBL directly and is sent from an official EMBL account. EMBL does not work with any external providers on sponsorship acquisition.

Please also note that:

  • EMBL never provides attendee lists for purchase. Any offers of such are fraudulent.
  • EMBL will never call or email you to ask for your credit card details or to request a payment.
  • All payments are on invoice.

Suspicious communications purportedly from, for or on behalf of EMBL should be reported to EMBL at the following email address sponsorship@embl.de.


EMBO | EMBL Symposia promote scientific communication and collaboration in the European research area. They provide scientists with a platform to discuss and exchange ideas on forward-looking topics and new developments in the life sciences.

Topics emphasise upcoming developments and the interdisciplinary nature of related fields. Jointly funded and organised by EMBO and EMBL – and complementary to their respective courses, workshops, and conference programmes – the symposia promote scientific communication and collaboration.

All symposia are held in the EMBL Advanced Training Centre (ATC) in Heidelberg, Germany, or virtually.

Date: 15 - 18 Apr 2024

Location: EMBL Heidelberg and Virtual

Venue: EMBL Advanced Training Centre


  • Prisca Liberali
    Friedrich Miescher Institute for Biomedical Research, Switzerland
    • Nicoletta Petridou
      EMBL Heidelberg, Germany
      • Amy Shyer
        The Rockefeller University, USA

EMBL Courses and Conferences are kindly supported by our Corporate Partnership Programme

Founder partners

Corporate partners

Associate partners

What's new on our blog