SPotlight Newsletter

Spotlight Newsletter

Summer Issue 2019

President's Report

As we all work hard on our day jobs, we also prepare for the upcoming SPS Annual Meeting in Barcelona, Spain. As deadlines loom, I quote Jenny Han “Everything good, everything magical happens between the months of June and August.”

I strongly encourage you to take a moment today to register for our 2019 Annual Meeting as well as for our social evening event on September 25 at an attractive venue close to the beach. Please do not forget to book your hotel as well!

In addition to the Annual Meeting, we are preparing for 2 regional meetings in 2019. The west coast meeting will be in South San Francisco, CA in November and the east coast can consider Shrewsbury, MA in October. Details for the meetings are being finalized and more information will be shared in the coming month. Registration for all SPS Regional Meetings will open this summer and information will be posted online and announced via email. I would like to thank the volunteers who are working on the respective organizing committees.

We have multiple initiatives underway as we reach the half-way point in 2019. The members of the Board of Directors continue to execute against our strategic plan which was approved earlier this year. One of the initiatives is to increase our efforts to partner with other organizations. We have sent letters stating our interest to partner safety pharmacology groups in Japan and China and are seeking liaisons to other groups.

Meanwhile, I hope you are enjoying our webinars, and remember if you missed any of the live webinars, you may view them anytime by visiting the Webinars page under the section called “past webinars” (member login required).

Finally, I would like to personally thank the members of the Society who have so graciously agreed to take an active role on a committee or other Society activity. The strength of our Society flows from our members who are so willing to commit their time and energies to further the Society. The shared goals and strong sense of community across our broad membership is perhaps one of our greatest strengths.

See you in Barcelona!

Michael Engwall, DVM, PhD, DSP
President, Safety Pharmacology Society

Annual Meeting News

Top Reasons to Attend the 2019 SPS Annual Meeting

On behalf of the Safety Pharmacology Society (SPS) Board of Directors and Officers, we would like to invite you to attend the 2019 SPS Annual Meeting at the Centre de Convencions Internacional de Barcelona in the beautiful, art-inspired city of Barcelona, Spain. The 2019 SPS Annual Meeting provides a dynamic forum for sharing the latest in safety pharmacology.

Top 10 Reasons to Attend #2019SPS

  1. Dynamic forum for best practice sharing within industry, CRO’s, academics, clinicians and regulators
  2. 50+ Scientific Sessions on some of the hottest topics in safety pharmacology related research
  3. 6 Continuing Education Courses taught by experts in the field
  4. 2 Plenary Keynote Presentations by key opinion leaders
  5. 50+ Exhibitors offering access to industry vendors
  6. 180+ Posters featuring cutting-edge research
  7. 20 Oral Communications in the main program from select poster abstracts
  8. Networking opportunities with a global community of scientists from regulatory, industry, and academia
  9. 10 Award opportunities that bring together Student and Jr. Investigators with seasoned scientists
  10. Sponsored Sessions by leading technology and service providers showcasing new technologies and research

The 2019 Scientific Program features a diverse range of scientific sessions organized into two themed tracks and covering issues such as:

  • Emerging In Vitro Models and their Application in Safety
  • Hot Topics in Central Nervous System
  • Can Safety Pharmacology Studies Support the Assessment of Immune-Related Adverse Events?
  • Thoughts on Translation
  • How Clinicians and Clinical Pharmacologists View Safety Pharmacology Data
  • Recent Trends in High Performance Computing for Safety Pharmacology
  • What Do Biomarkers Mark? A Safety Pharmacology Perspective
  • Impact of Early Safety Pharmacology Derisking Strategies and Technique
  • Strategies for Getting to FIH and Beyond – Efficiently and Safely
  • Revisiting S7A and S7B
  • We also have two keynote plenary presentations planned on the topics The Utility of Human Stem Cell Models of Nervous System Disorders: Progress and Clinical Proof of Concept and Leveraging the In Silico World of Data to Identify Personalized Medicine Approaches for Novel Drug Targets

The Meeting offers a broad Continuing Education program both on an introductory level as well as advanced courses for the expert. A program outline is now available on the 2019 Meeting website. For those interested in increasing their knowledge, recognition and expertise in the field, we will also be holding the 2019 certification exam for the Diplomate in Safety Pharmacology on September 22 and invite all interested SPS members to consider sitting the exam this year.

Join us in Barcelona for our 2019 Annual Meeting this Fall!

Register by July 15 and Save $200!

Register Online | Mail or Fax Registration Form

2019 Annual Meeting Mobile App: Coming Soon!

The 2019 SPS Annual Meeting mobile app is coming soon! This interactive app will allow you to:

  • View the schedule and sessions, save sessions to your personal agenda, and get detailed presenter information.
  • Stay up to date on the most popular sessions, promotions, and events in the Activity Feed.
  • Receive announcements and obtain the most up-to-date information about what's going on.
  • Expand your professional network and have fun by interacting with other attendees in the app.

Visit our website for more information and download instructions!
The Mobile App is scheduled to launch about one month prior to the Meeting.

Abstract Deadline Extended to June 21

Great news! We have extended the Abstract submission. If you have already submitted your abstract, please feel free to log in and make edits to your submission between now and then. If you have not yet submitted, please be sure to finalize your abstract and submit it before June 21. The Jr. Investigator and Student Travel Award application deadline (July 1) has not been extended.

Student and Academic Opportunities

Travel Awards for Students and Junior Investigators

To encourage and support world-wide representation of students and junior investigators at the Meeting, SPS offers Junior Investigator Travel Awards and Student Travel Awards. The deadline for submitting award applications is July 1, 2019.

The deadline to submit your abstract online for the award is June 21. All other award application materials are due by July 1. Please visit our website for complete details on Travel Award eligibility.

Networking Events at the Annual Meeting

Student/Academic Speed Networking Event
Tuesday, September 24, 2019 ~ 12:00–13:00
Centre de Convencions Internacional de Barcelona
Room: TBD

SPS Student, Jr. Investigator and Academic Speed Networking Event

For all students and young investigators interested in the field of safety pharmacology and toxicology: generate new connections and learn more about safety pharmacology by attending our Speed Networking Event (including free lunch). This event is a fantastic way to grow your network, meet SPS members and open new opportunities! This event is open to both Annual Meeting registrants and Non-registrants (you do not have to register for the Annual Meeting to take advantage of the networking event, but everyone must RSVP—see below).

All interested students, junior investigators, and academic participants are welcome! Participants who are not registered for the Annual Meeting, are invited to join the afternoon sessions at the Annual Meeting taking place on Tuesday, September 24 from 12:00–17:45 for free.

If you wish to attend this event, you must complete the RSVP form by September 1.

Hotel Deadlines—Book Today!

2019 SPS Annual Meeting Housing Reservation Deadline—August 21

SPS has negotiated discounted rates with three nearby hotels (all within a one block radius), exclusively for our attendees at the Hilton Diagonal Mar Barcelona, the Barcelona Princess and AC Hotel Barcelona Forum. Discounted rooms are limited this year, so we encourage you to book as soon as you know your travel plans!

    Hilton Diagonal Mar Barcelona
    Passeig del Taulat, 262–264
    08019 Barcelona, Spain

    The Hilton Diagonal Barcelona is the headquarters hotel. We have negotiated a room block with the hotel group rate of €254 (single)/€274 (double) including VAT, breakfast and Wi-Fi. These rates will be available on a first come, first serve basis until August 21.

    Reserve Your Room

    Barcelona Princess
    Avinguda Diagonal, 1
    08019 Barcelona, Spain

    The Barcelona Princess Hotel is located in front of the Forum and Convention Centre. We have negotiated a room block with the hotel group rate of €176 (single)/€196 (double) including VAT, breakfast and Wi-Fi. These rates will be available on a first come, first serve basis until August 31. Please note a non-refundable one night deposit is required at the time of booking.

    Reserve Your Room by faxing (+34) 93-356.10.22 or emailing your completed reservation form to book your room

    AC Hotel Barcelona Forum
    Passeig del Taulat, 278
    08019 Barcelona, Spain

    The AC Hotel Barcelona Forum is located just around the corner from the Convention Center. We have negotiated a room block with the hotel group rate of €225.50 (single)/€248.60 (double) including VAT, breakfast and Wi-Fi. These rates will be available on a first come, first sever basis until August 21.

    Reserve Your Room

Visit the Annual Meeting Website for more on the travel, housing and city information to discover anything you might need to know to explore this beautiful city.

Important Reminder: SPS does NOT work with a housing/hotel reservations company. The only way to reserve your hotel room with the SPS block is to use the links listed on our website or call the hotel directly. Communications from persons other than SPS are not authorized and should be regarded as spam.

Waived Registration: US Federal and International Regulatory Agency Employees

In order to facilitate greater interaction with our regulatory colleagues, all US federal employees, and international regulatory agency employees may register to attend the 2019 SPS Annual Meeting at no charge. Waived registration is available to all active US federal employees, and all active employees at international regulatory agencies (must show valid regulatory/government ID at registration).

Registration is required by September 1.

Partner with Us! 2019 Sponsorship Opportunities

SPS is in the process of planning our 2019 Annual Meeting to be held September 23–26 in Barcelona, Spain, which attracts over 500 participants from around the globe. Over the last few months, the Program Committee has been hard at work to organize a scientific program that is inclusive of topics across the broad range of interests to our members and colleagues in the field.

General Annual Meeting Support

It is through the generous support of companies like yours that SPS has been able to offer affordable educational programs, such as our Annual Meeting, to a global audience. We hope that you will consider supporting the Society by becoming a sponsor of the 2019 Annual Meeting. Please refer to the 2019 Sponsorship Levels showing the detailed list of benefits/recognition that SPS can offer in return for your support. If a formal grant/support request needs to be submitted online, we would be happy to complete the next steps to ensure we comply with your company's policy.

2019 SPS Social Event Sponsorship (GO Beach Club)

In addition to the Annual Meeting support, we have two Diamond Level sponsorship opportunities as well as various Supporter and Contributor levels available for our evening social event on September 25 at the GO Beach Club. This event provides a unique and fun experience for attendees to participant in an evening social event with colleagues. These sponsor opportunities are a fun way for your company to interact with attendees by sponsoring special items/services during the event and your company name is showcased in front of a targeted group of attendees. All levels of sponsors for the event are included in all event promotions, website and event day signage. Details on the special event opportunities are available upon request.

Exhibit Opportunities at the 2019 Annual Meeting

Networking + Science at the premier event in the industry.

500 + high-level, influential decision makers
Industry professionals looking to Exhibitors for innovative, emerging technology solutions
3.5 days of intensive best practice sharing, networking and education

As an Exhibitor, you receive:

  • Two complimentary full conference registrations, which allow exhibitors to participate in all scientific sessions and social functions;
  • Company listing and exhibit location published in the Society's Annual Meeting Program provided to all meeting attendees;
  • All networking functions including breaks, lunches, and poster sessions within the exhibit space;
  • A variety of ways to communicate and connect with attendees through exclusive advertising and marketing opportunities.

Don't wait, there are only 18 booths left and we anticipate a sold-out Hall! Join us today to become part of this extraordinary program!

Reserve your booth today!

Advertising & Marketing Opportunities


We have a large variety of advertising and marketing opportunities available to companies who wish to have a presence at the 2019 Annual Meeting and beyond. These opportunities include items such as; email blasts to attendees, mobile app push notifications, mailing list rentals, sponsored education opportunities, unique visual advertising in the meeting space, and final program advertising.

Please note: some opportunities are exclusive to exhibitors and sponsors, and many are limited opportunities.

Please read through our Advertising and Marketing Prospectus to view all the opportunities available. Availability for each opportunity is updated on the advertising and marketing page.

Please email Amy Willis to secure your opportunity!


Diplomate in Safety Pharmacology (DSP) Certification Exam and Preparation

The Diplomate in Safety Pharmacology (DSP) has gained increasing recognition over the last five years. With more than sixty Diplomates as of today, the certification includes members representing all major areas of our discipline including academia, industry and regulatory agencies. Achieving global recognition, the DSP establishes high quality standards for professionals evolving in the field of safety pharmacology. The Safety Pharmacology Society invites you to register to participate in our Diplomate in Safety Pharmacology (DSP) certification exam this fall in Barcelona, Spain on September 22, 2019.

All details relative to the certification exam process including eligibility, study materials, scientific scope, and examination format are presented on the DSP website.

Register for the DSP Exam today!

2019 Distinguished Service Award Recipient

The Safety Pharmacology Society is honored to recognize its 2019 Distinguished Service Award Recipient, Brian D. Guth, PhD.

The award is in recognition of Dr. Guth’s significant scientific contributions to many areas of safety pharmacology including cardiovascular physiology/pharmacology, and his direct impact on safety pharmacology as an academic discipline demonstrated by the recent educational initiatives he implemented in South Africa. Dr. Guth’s body of work over the past 35+ years has been impactful and impressive.

Please be sure to attend Dr. Guth’s DSA presentation at the 2019 SPS Annual Meeting on Thursday, September 26, 2019 at 09:15.

2019 SPS Regional Meetings: Save the Date/s

October 2019
Shrewsbury, MA (Charles River Laboratories)

SPS East Coast Regional Meeting: Topic TBD

Details for the SPS East Coast Regional Meeting are being finalized and more information will be shared in the coming months.

November 8, 2019
South San Francisco, CA (Genentech)

SPS Bay Area California Regional Meeting: Topic TBD

Details for the SPS Bay Area California Regional Meeting are being finalized and more information will be shared in the coming months.

Registration for all SPS Regional Meetings will open this summer, information will be posted online and will be announced via email.

We hope to see you at a future SPS Regional Meeting!

SPS Collaborations and Activities

SOT Scientific Liaison Coalition (Member since 2011)
JSPS Meeting Participation (March 2019)
SOT Global Gallery and Post-doc Mixer participant (March 2019)
UW Madison Distance Learning Course support (April–May 2019)
ASCPT Webinar share with SPS Members (May 2019)
SPS is Partner Organization in the EU Commission Grant: INnovation in Safety Pharmacology for Integrated cardiovascular safety assessment to REduce adverse events and late stage drug attrition (INSPIRE) (May 2019–September 2023)

Upcoming Webinars

Upcoming Meetings

Member News

SPS Members Speaking at World Preclinical Congress (WPC) this Month

We wish to recognize SPS members Najah Abi-Gerges, Gary Gintant, and Vivek (Vic) Kadambi for their upcoming talks during the June 17–20 WPC in Boston, MA. If you will be at the Meeting, be sure to attend their talks to support your fellow SPS Member!

SPS Member Interviewed by High School Student for Science Project

We wish to thank SPS Member and Academic Outreach Committee Chair, Khuram Chaudhary for taking time out of his day to participate in a phone interview with a high school student interested in pharmacology/safety pharmacology. The student was completing a science class project where they had to research more about a field they were interested in. As part of their project, they were instructed to interview someone who works in that field. The transcript from the interview can be found here.

Recent Publications of Interest

The West coast regional safety pharmacology society meeting update: Filling translational gaps in safety assessment

Simultaneous assessment of compound activity on cardiac Nav1.5 peak and late currents in an automated patch clamp platform.

Verification of CiPA Recommended Voltage Protocols in Patch-Clamp Assay for hERG, Cav1.2 and Late Nav1.5 Currents