Monday, November 10, 2008

ASN 2008

Here's some pics from our Philadelphia trip to the American Society of Nephrology meeting.

The meeting was something of a family affair: my Dad is also a nephrologist, and here he is introducing Sophie to riding the escalator, which to her was the equivalent to an amusement park ride.

They have a whole section at the meeting which is different pharmaceutical companies and device manufacturers. This bizarre, futuristic scene is from the Baxter booth, one of the big manufacturers of dialysis machines and related equipment. When I first saw these cool pods, I thought perhaps they were some new-wave dialysis machine which isolates the patient from their unpleasant environment. However, it turns out they were simply "isolation pods"--a place where weary convention-goers could relax and take a load of their feet. While subliminal Baxter messages playing in the background, no doubt. I decided not to try this out for fear of the "Clockwork Orange"-style brainwashing which might ensue.
Also weird was this large Amgen-sponsored cube advertising their slick new drug sensipar, which acts on the parathyroid glands, which help regulate the body's calcium levels. It turns out that dialysis patients have major perturbations with the parathyroid gland, so this drug is particularly useful.
The inside of the cube was modeled to look like the insideof a parathyroid gland cell. You can see vitamin D & its receptor floating around if you look carefully.
One of the best things about the meeting being in Philly was the ability to catch up with old friends. Here's HUP Men's Club Alum Matt Ortman pushing Sophie on the swingset. He would have preferred to have played with her on the tape-cul (see-saw) but unfortunately there was none available.


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