In June SPbU will host the First International St Petersburg Congress on Autoimmunity "Bridge between West and East".

This was said at the working meeting between SPbU Vice-Rector for Research Sergey Aplonov and Consul General of Israel Michael Lotem. They met to discuss success, not the first one for SPbU, in winning MegaGrant from the Russian Government to attract world's leading researchers and scientists to work with the Russian universities and research institutions. One of two MegaGrant 2016 was received to establish a new research laboratory, and it will be headed by an outstanding Israeli Professor Y. Shoenfeld.

Professor Yehuda Shoenfeld, MD., FRCP Professor and Head of Zabludovicz of Autoimmune Center, Cheba Medical Center, Tel-Aviv University, Israel; President of the International Autoimmunity Congress; a world's leading professional in research, treatment and prevention of autoimmune diseases. In SPbU he will create a laboratory of the mosaic of autoimmunity to study causes and mechanisms of autoimmune diseases and to create immunity tools for diagnosis and treatment. This was an only MegaGrant 2016 from the Russia's Government in clinical medicine.

Autoimmune diseases are conditions arising from the body's immune responses directed against its own tissues and parts causing tissue and organ destruction.

The new research laboratory at SPbU is destinied to become examplary research and innovative laboratory in biomedicine to offer a complete spectrum of services: from initial clinical observations, analysis, understanding the causes of the diseases to translation its findings into medical practice. The laboratory will closely collaborate with the Institute of Translational Biomedicine and SPbU's clinics.

One of the major reasons why Professor Y. Shoenfeld decided to work with SPbU is that SPbU Resource Centres are equipped, by the world's standards, with the best of the possibilities. The centres offer unique services that makes them competitive with the world's leading research centres in immunology and biomedicine, ensures research cooperation and exchange of ideas on a global scale.

At the working meeting Sergey Aplonov and Michael Lotem agreed on how the laboratory would be developed and headed by Prof Shoenfeld and  discussed how SPbU was and would be cooperating with Israeli research and education institutions, in particular those focusing on life science.

For reference: Prof Shoenfeld is an author and editor of the books: "The Mosaic of Autoimmune Diseases", "Infections and  Autoimmunity", "Autoantibodies", "Diagnostic Criteria in Autoimmune Diseases" which make grounds for research and clinical practice.

He is an author of over thousands of articles on autoimmune diseases published in: Nature, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, Journal of Clinical Investigation, Journal of Immunology, Journal of the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology.

Yehuda Shoenfeld is a member of the editorial board of 43 journals on rheumatology and autoimmune diseases; Editor-in-Chief of Autoimmunity Reviews (Elsevier), IMAJ and Harefuah (Israel), co-editor of Journal of Autoimmunity and Autoimmunity Netvork; engaged in preparing The Israeli Medical Encyclopedia; arranged over 20 international autoimmunity congresses.