Investing in a healthy future for all

DOHaD 2019 will be held at the Melbourne Convention Centre.
DOHaD 2019 will be held at the Melbourne Convention Centre.

The World Congress on Developmental Origins of Health and Disease (DOHaD) will be held at the Melbourne Convention Centre from 20-23 October 2019. This congress has been years in the making, with two Monash scientists leading the successful Melbourne bid to host the event back in 2016.

Monash Biomedicine Discovery Institute researcher, Professor John Bertram, is the chair of the Congress, and led the successful bid with Professor Euan Wallace. Professor Bertram said that Melbourne is known internationally for research in this area.

“This is just the second time the Congress has been held in Australia. More than 1000 delegates are attending, including 750 international delegates. Monash has a long history in this research area, with many researchers based in the Monash BDI,” Professor Bertram said.

The scale of DOHaD sets it apart from other conferences. Attendees from around the world will gather at the Melbourne Convention Centre to address the many challenges that currently impact the health of mothers and fathers, babies in the womb, infants, children and adolescents. Local, national and international scientists, as well as clinical researchers, obstetricians, paediatricians, public health professionals and policy leaders will gather to explore solutions, interventions and policies to optimise health across the lifespan, under the theme of ‘Investing in a healthy future for all’.

The event includes nine plenary speakers who are experts in the field, including Monash BDI’s Professor Charles Mackay, a leading advocate of a new explanation for many ‘western lifestyle' diseases - that diet, gut microbes and their metabolites are responsible.

DOHaD provides attendees with a great opportunity to meet with colleagues and form new collaborations.

The congress will run over four days, filled with workshops, parallel symposia on a diver range of topics, two standalone poster presentations and three satellite meetings. A public engagement event will also involve members of the public and secondary school students.

This public forum, ‘Adolescents: Investing in future generations’, is aimed at adolescents (aged 10-24), parents, teachers and the public. A panel of researchers and adolescent community leaders will discuss issues faced by adolescents in today’s society including mental health, diet and exercise and Indigenous health. The interactive discussion will include how choices adolescents make today can impact their health in the future, and possibly on the health of their children.

Chaired by journalist and ABC TV broadcaster Ian Henderson, the panel includes adolescent community leaders and university academics: Dr Sandro Demaio, CEO VicHealth; Professor Patrick McGorry AO, Orygen Youth Mental Health; Professor George Patton, adolescent expert, Murdoch Children’s Research Institute; Dr Jacquie Bay, Liggins Institute’s adolescent knowledge translation programme, Auckland, New Zealand; Associate Professor Kym Rae, Indigenous health expert, University of Newcastle. The panel also includes adolescent leaders from Melbourne and Geelong.

The public forum will be held on Monday 21 October from 5.45-7.30pm. Click here to register.

If you aren’t already registered for DOHaD, you can do so by visiting the website.

About the Monash Biomedicine Discovery Institute

Committed to making the discoveries that will relieve the future burden of disease, the newly established Monash Biomedicine Discovery Institute at Monash University brings together more than 120 internationally-renowned research teams. Our researchers are supported by world-class technology and infrastructure, and partner with industry, clinicians and researchers internationally to enhance lives through discovery.

About the DOHaD Society

The International Society for Developmental Origins of Health and Disease was set up to promote research into the fetal and developmental origins of disease and involves scientists from many backgrounds.