International School
on Advanced Immunology

Oveview of 2022 Session 

The 1st International School on Advanced Immunology was held at Awaji Yumebutai International Conference Center on 7-10 November 2022, jointly by Osaka University Immunology Frontier Research Center (IFReC) and ImmunoSensation2 at the University of Bonn. The School is the continuation of the NIF Winter School on Advanced Immunology, which IFReC jointly organized with the Singapore Immunology Network (SIgN) in 2012-2020.

Forty-nine extremely talented young researchers were selected from 382 applicants from around the world to participate in the School. These young researchers learned cutting-edge immunology from 15 world-renowned senior researchers over a four-day period, and all participants gave short oral and poster presentations. They formed close friendships with their peers through lively discussions and communication. In addition, on 11 November, XX young researchers who wished to visit IFReC had the opportunity to tour IFReC’s laboratories.

Except for the participation fee (50,000 yen), which was paid by the participants, IFReC covered the cost of airfare, accommodation in a comfortable room and excellent meals at the high-class hotel (Awaji Nikko Grand hotel).

On the other hand, because COVID-19 measures were strongly advised in Japan at the time of the School, participants were required to ensure sufficient social distance and to wear masks at all times during the School. Thanks to the understanding and cooperation of the participants, the School was successfully completed without any health problems. However, unfortunately, due to the restrictions, we were unable to have as many opportunities for close exchanges as in the previous Schools.

The School organizers cordially appreciate the financial support of Chugai Pharmaceutical, Otsuka Pharmaceutical, the Tsutomu Nakauchi Foundation, the Hyogo International Association, the Naito Foundation, the World Premier International Research Center Initiative (WPI), and the JSPS Core-to-Core Program (JPJSCCA202110008).

Date and Venue

7-10 November 2022
Awaji Yumebutai International Conference Center, Awaji Island, Japan

11 November 2022

Immunology Frontier Research Center (IFReC), Osaka University, Osaka, Japan
Participants were given the opportunity to visit IFReC on the Suita Campus of Osaka University in Osaka, Japan.

Application and Selection

Participants were selected by the 2022 International School Selection Committee through a competitive screening and selection process based on submitted application materials: Curriculum vitae, a personal statement describing their motivation for attending the program, an abstract of the applicant’s presentation, and a recommendation letter.

  • 50 applicants were successfully selected from 382 applicants. Because one participant was unable to attend, 49 participants of 20 nationalities attended.
    Two of the participants joined the School through the exchange program between the German Society for Immunology and the Japan Society for Immunology.
  • 32 participants were female (65%) and 17 participants were male (35%).
  • 30 participants were PhD students (61%) and 19 were early postdocs (39%)
  • Average age of participants was 29.6 ± 2.8 years old.
  • Participants were originally from Europe (22), Asia (13), Oceania (2), Northern America (8), South America (3) and the Middle East (1).
  • Participants belong to institutes located in Europe (26), Asia (7), Oceania (4), Northern America (10) and the Middle East (2).
  • Four young researchers from the companies collaborating with IFReC also attended (two from Chugai Pharmaceutical, Co., Ltd. and two from Otsuka Pharmaceutical, Co., Ltd.).
  • Click here to view the flyer of International School on Advanced Immunology 2022 (pdf)

2022 Program

The scientific program comprised participants’ short presentations, poster sessions, and 15 guest lectures. Each participant presented during a poster session and gave a short oral presentation as well. In addition to the scientific program, there were welcome and farewell parties in a friendly atmosphere after dinners as a part of the program.

Lecturers (7-10 November, 2022)

Shizuo Akira IFReC, Osaka University (Japan)
Ido Amit Weizmann Institute of Science (Israel)
Eva Bartok University Hospital Bonn, ImmunoSensation2 (Germany)
Keishi Fujio The University of Tokyo (Japan)
Koji Hase Keio University (Japan)
Axel Kallies The University of Melbourne (Australia)
Eicke Latz University Hospital Bonn, ImmunoSensation2 (Germany)
Elvira Mass University of Bonn, ImmunoSensation2 (Germany)
Gabriel Núñez University of Michigan (USA)
Marion Pepper University of Washington (USA)
Marco Prinz University of Freiburg (Germany)
Michel Sadelain Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (USA)
Shimon Sakaguchi IFReC, Osaka University (Japan)
Ziv Shulman Weizmann Institute of Science (Israel)

Presentation Award Laureates

Awards were given to the following participants for their excellent presentations.

Sandra Nakandakari-Higa The Rockefeller University, USA
Nathalie M. Schmidt University College London, UK
Lydia N. Raines Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, USA
Josipa Jerak Universita della Svizzera Italiana and ETH Zurich, Switzerland

Organizing Committee

Immunology Frontier Research Center, Osaka University

Tomohiro Kurosaki (Director)
Hisashi Arase
Sho Yamasaki
Naoki Hosen
Kazuhiro Suzuki
Wataru Ise
James Badger Wing

ImmunoSensation2 Cluster of Excellence, University of Bonn, Germany

Gunther Hartmann
Waldemar Kolanus
Christian Kurts
Eicke Latz
Elvira Mass
Katrin Paeschke
Andreas Schlitzer


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Messages from the Participants

The quality of the school has exceeded my expectations. highly recommend you to participate and feel it.

This is an excellent winter school that I would recommend to everyone I know! It was an amazing experience!! I not only learnt a lot about immunology-related topics from labs all over the world, but also made new friends and possibly new collaborators.

This was a great conference that I would highly recommend to any student or young postdoc. I have met new science friends that I hope I will see many times over my scientific career, I learned about different fields of immunology, and had an amazing week on the beautiful awaji island in Japan.


Very rewarding experience. I recommend.

As a computational biologist, I had the great opportunity to interact with many young talented immunologists as well as leading researchers in this school. I highly recommend to all of the junior researchers with a strong interest in immunology.

Can we still at least try to join the future school even we already participated this year? It’s too good to be missed

I cannot say anything more that this School was really worth applying to. I encourage any interested doctoral student and early postdoc to apply and I also join the visits the School propose. They will be an occasion to meet participants out of the lab and build stronger contacts with them.

Yes, I would highly recommend.

The International School on Advanced Immunology, with world-leading immunologists from four different continents, offered the perfect environment to foster scientific exchange and strengthen networks among immunology labs. The broad scope covers topics ranging from innate immune receptors and signalling modulation to adaptive responses and immunological memory. I cannot think of a better place where to share my research, look for a possible collaboration, future place to work on, or just get to know the directions of immunological research around the world!

I am very glad that I got the chance to participate in this school. It was a pleasure to met so many excellent researchers and discussed about science. Their feedback was very helpful for my project. In addition, the organization was very good. I am very sure, that we all were stunned by the japanese hospitality. Thank you very much for hosting us.

It was a fantastic opportunity to network with so many budding international immunologist. I learnt a great deal and made great friendships with a number of colleagues which I hope to maintain into the future!

I highly recommend the participation at the school. It was very inspiring to meet immunology leaders and make new friendships with young researchers from all over the world.