“The Vital Nature Sign” Dedicated to Lithuanian University Centennial

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16th International Scientific Conference “The Vital Nature Sign” was organized online on May 12-13, 2022, by Vytautas Magnus University (Kaunas, Lithuania), Lithuanian Academy of Sciences, and Nordic Separation Science Society. The Conference is organized annually and provides an opportunity to present the most recent scientific results to colleagues and guests of the Conference for no conference fee. It is a nice opportunity to create new contacts and to find partners for the future collaboration projects. There is no need to think about poster printing – only e-posters (5 min flash-presentation) are presented during the conference. This tradition was started already 6 years ago and it is gladly supported by the scientific community, since it helps solving poster – related technical, environmental, logistics and many other problems.

This year Conference was devoted to the Centennial of Lithuanian University. On February 16, 1922, the University of Lithuania was established in Kaunas, from which three contemporary higher education institutions, namely Vytautas Magnus University, Kaunas University of Technology and Lithuanian Health University have grown up. Kaunas, the second largest city in Lithuania, which was the temporary capital of Lithuania in 1919–1939, was the city where the first and the only Lithuanian higher education institution at that time was established. In 1922, after reorganizing the Higher Courses in Kaunas, the University of Lithuania was founded. In this occasion author of this article and Head of the Conference forwarded the greetings word from the Rector of Vytautas Magnus University, patron of the Conference Juozas Augutis, who pointed out the importance of the establishment of Lithuanian University for scientific development, social, cultural advancement of Lithuanian society and its role in education. Diversity of scientific directions at the Faculty of Natural Sciences of Vytautas Magnus University was reviewed in the Faculty Dean’s Saulius Mickevičius greeting speech to the participants.

The distinguished feature of the Conference series “The Vital Nature Sign” from the beginning is its multi-disciplinarity, as it covers natural, life and technology sciences. Many interdisciplinary project results were reported in the Conference. Organizers notice, that often very involving, interesting discussions of such reports develop during the Conference. Organizers treat the Conference as an important education tool for students and early phase scientists, as well as, these are the main reasons why they do voluntary work organizing the Conference.

Many interesting presentations were reported in the Conference. Twenty-four oral presentations and forty-three flash presentations of the e-posters were presented during the conference. Academician E. Bartkienė and Prof. G. Juodeikienė along with research groups with international partners reported about emerging technologies, development of new products and assessment of their quality in food sciences. Ecotoxicity and genotoxicity assays based on the plants development and application was presented by prof. M. Zacchini and his research group from Rome CNR, Italy. Nickel toxicity was discussed by Dr. S. Terpilowska from Poland. Dr. E. Donati with co-authors from Italy presented interesting research results on edible wild plants. Dr. M. Ligor with co-authors from Prof. B. Buszewski research group at Nicolaus Copernicus University, Poland reported on methodological developments of determination of neonicotinoids in honey. A few more presentations on methodological developments and analysis of different matrices were reported by Prof. B. Buszewski’s research group. Application of highly ordered π-electron materials and contactless conductivity detection for analysis of bioactive compounds was presented by author of this article with the research group and colleagues from three research institutions from Japan lead by Prof. H. Ihara and Prof. M. Takafuji. Cold plasma treatment effect on morphometric and biochemical parameters of the plant was discussed by Dr. R. Žūkienė and her research group. Researchers from Laboratory of Molecular Neurooncology, Neuroscience Institute, Medical Academy, Lithuanian University of Health Sciences presented results obtained on TSP-1 in glioma patients blood serum and tumor tissues. Scientists from Czech Republic with colleagues from Lithuania presented research on fluorescently labelled auxins and elucidation of their biological activity.

Variety of the Flash presentations induced active discussions, raised numerous questions, and attracted a lot of attention from the audience.

The organizers noticed broad scope of the topics reported and discussed. Prof. M. Zacchini noticed usefulness of such interdisciplinary conference and opened possibilities for further cooperation. Prof. A. Vegvari from Karolinska Institutet, Sweden, pointed out the growth of the conference in sense of the importance and relevance of the topics presented.

For the participants an opportunity to publish Conference proceedings in scientific journals  „Chemija“, „Lithuanian Journal of Physics“, „Biologija“, „Toxicological & Environmental Chemistry“ and „Environmental Research, Engineering and Management“ is provided.

The abstract book of the Conference and more information can be found at:  http://vns.microsep.org/

Academician Audrius Maruška,

Chairman of the Conference

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