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It gives me great pleasure, on behalf of the Unipath 2017 Local Organising Committee, to invite you to the Unipath 2017 Congress. This is the 54th International Congress of the Federation of South African Societies of Pathology and is being co-hosted by the University of Pretoria. The conference will take place 19-21 September 2017 in Pretoria at the purpose-built CSIR International Convention Centre. The venue is situated close to all the central amenities and hotels in Pretoria, easily accessible from all major routes in Gauteng as well as being served by the Gautrain Bus from Hatfield station. It offers superb facilities and quality service with conference, function and exhibition venues that can accommodate events and groups of 500 to as many as 1000.

This is a timely event for Pathology, as a number of different pathology specialities will be represented and this is embedded in the name and theme of the conference, “Unipath: Unifying Pathology and Laboratory Medicine in the era of P4 Medicine”. P4 Medicine is being increasingly embraced within the ethos of medicine, especially diagnostic laboratory medicine.  P4 Medicine is a term coined by biologist and founder of Applied Biosystems, Leroy Hood, and is short for “Predictive, Preventive, Personalized, and Participatory Medicine.” The premise of P4 Medicine is that medical practice over the next 20 years will be revolutionized by biotechnology, to manage a person’s health instead of managing a patient’s disease.

An attractive and highly stimulating scientific programme is planned by the respective societies, with cross-disciplinary and cross-cutting presentations from the fields of Anatomical Pathology, Virology, Immuno and Haematopathology, Clinical Biochemistry/Chemical Pathology, Medical Microbiology and Forensic Pathology. There will be a strong focus on molecular diagnostics and preventive/predictive diagnostics in keeping with the idea of P4 medicine. Postgraduate students and other trainees will be given ample opportunity to present their research findings and discuss their work with their peers. Several keynote speakers from across the globe, including several A-rated researchers from the University of Pretoria, will be presenting at this meeting. A number of exciting satellite workshops are also being planned around the conference.

There will be an opportunity to participate in the trade exhibition, showcasing the latest diagnostic reagents and equipment being marketed in Africa.

Pretoria is a quaint and understated city of immense historical importance in South Africa, famous for its Jacaranda lined streets and offering numerous tourist attractions.

We extend a warm welcome and look forward to your presence at what promises to be an unforgettable event.

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