UK Affymetrix Users Group

The UK Affymetrix Users Group was formed in early 2002 to provide a forum for UK academic users of the Affymetrix GeneChip system to exchange experiences and ideas, to provide a support mechanism and self-help group, and to allow researchers using the same system to get together on an informal basis.

The group is run for the benefit of its members by its members. The group is independent of any external commercial influence and is directed by the needs and ideas of its members.

As well as meeting face-to-face, a Yahoo Group for UKaffy is available for general discussion.

This includes an ARCHIVE back to March 2006.

UKAffy 2010 - by Paul Heath (local organiser and host)

UKAffy 9.

The 2010 meeting came to Sheffield largely because I was hoping our new building would be ready in time. As it happened this was not the case but we were able to hire The Ridge conference centre. It was more expensive than getting a free lecture theatre like Helen was able to do last year but came as an all-inclusive package which reduced the organisational load. Many of the problems Helen faced were dealt with by the centre. I have to say that my task was made much easier by Helen passing on a surplus from last year and a list of potential sponsors. As it happened 10 companies remained keen. Qiagen and Integromics were able to make it this year although VWR dropped out at the last minute. In addition we had Affymetrix, Agilent, Lab901, Nugen, Ingenuity, Partek and GeneGo.

I failed to take into account Helen’s warning about late registration and the problems it can cause. To further warn future organisers make sure you set a strong registration closure date because it makes sorting out final numbers for lots of things a great deal easier.

As ever the biggest problem was speakers. I asked for volunteers just in case but the response was underwhelming. Stuart and Mark from the Paterson and Aarti from Oxford bravely stepped forward but then I moved onto the standby of volunteering local researchers who had done microarray experiments and whose work I thought others would find interesting. Personally I thought all the speakers did a very good job and everyone got something from the talks. I also want to thank the sponsors who also contributed some good talks which fitted well into the two days without being too commercial. We did have a problem with volume which was my fault and was mostly sorted on the second day.

Whist I started the ball rolling in getting things organised I have to acknowledge the outstanding contribution of Rebecca Brown a secretary on our department. She did all the nitty-gritty phoning and emailing that saved me an immense amount of time and worry. Other members of staff also were on hand for little jobs at various times and my daughter spent a day looking after registration.

My impression and personal feedback suggests it went well. (Thanks to Mike for being unofficial photographer and his short report). I was worried that it might not happen but once it got started everyone seemed to enjoy themselves and it is such a good forum for catching up with old friends and colleagues.

We already have offers to host a meeting next year, the tenth, and the committee will get together soon to discuss what we are going to do. It seems to me that the format is slowly evolving and we need to consider how we maintain the ambience and enable people to get together like this once a year.

A brief review of UKAffy2010 by Mike Hubank:

The University of Sheffield played host to UK Affy this year, providing the usual heady mix of science and socialising we all know and love.

Two days of interesting and relevent talks from users, providers and supporting commercial operations informed and entertained all of us. The venue at "the Ridge" was one of the best we have ever had, with great conference facilities, good food and luxury accommodation on site. Student accommodation wasnt like that in my day!

As tradition demands, a fabulous local pub was close at hand where many UKAffy goers retired to consider the day´s proceedings and generally put the world to rights (and perform abysmally in the pubquiz).

Congratulations go to Paul Heath and his team who did such an excellent job of organising the event. Hopefully I´ll be able to persuade him to put a meeting report together.

UKAffy 2009 was on 17th and 18th September 2009
at the University of Warwick

The meeting venue for 2008 was in Nottingham at the Tales of Robin Hood.

The evening 'mystery meal' was a medieval banquet at the same venue and a merrie night was had by all.

Committee (2010)

Paul Heath (Chair for 2010 meeting)
Priya Banerjee, University College London
Rachel Butler, Oxford University
Jane Coghill, Bristol University
Sean May, Nottingham University (web)
Stuart Pepper, Paterson Institute for Cancer Research
Requires Yahoo login


WWW ukaffy