Sixth Keele Meeting on Aluminium, 2005

Aluminium :  Lithosphere to Biosphere (and Back)

26th February - 2nd March 2005
Palace Hotel Bussaco
Buçaco, Portugal

Organisation | Aims of the Meeting | Call for Papers | JD Birchall Memorial Lecture | Registration | Bursaries | Venue | Travel | Air Portugal discount for Meeting participants | Social Programme | Contacts | Preregistration Form | Registration Form (PDF) | (DOC)


The Sixth Keele Meeting on Aluminium will be held in Portugal.

The decision to take the meeting on the road will give groups around the world the opportunity to host future Keele Meetings.

Local hosts will be responsible for the organisation of the Conference Venue and Conference Registration.

The organisation of the Scientific Programme of the meetings will not be changed and will continue to be coordinated through Keele.

Enquiries regarding hosting the Seventh Keele Meeting in 2007 should be addressed to Dr C Exley at Keele (

The local hosts for the Sixth Keele Meeting are Professor Paula P Gonçalves of the University of Aveiro and Professor Catarina R Oliveira of the University of Coimbra.

Their team includes:

Paula P Gonçalves, António JA Nogueira, Fernando M Morgado and Virgilia S Silva
Centre for Environmental and Marine Studies, Department of Biology, University of Aveiro.

Catarina R Oliveira, Ana Cristina Rego and Paula Agostinho
Centre for Neuroscience of Coimbra and Institute of Biochemistry, Faculty of Medicine, University of Coimbra.

Aims of the Meeting

Aluminium is everywhere. But why ? How did it come to be concentrated in the Earth's crust and why considering that the crust has been recycled several times during the existence of our planet is aluminium predominantly still found in these mineral forms ? What are the geochemical controls which continue to keep aluminium out of the biosphere ? Are these controls the reasons behind the paradox that is the ubiquity of this element. For example, in the natural selection of the elements of life (thanks to RJP Williams for this breathtakingly simple but immenseley powerful Darwinian tool) the ‘principal of the economical utilisation of resources’ should have dictated a role for aluminium in the evolution of life on Earth. Perhaps it did and this role has long since departed or perhaps the evolution of life proceeded as it has because of the absence of biologically available aluminium. What is evident in what should now be known as ‘The Aluminium Age’ (cf. Bronze or Iron Ages of Man's recent past) is that the metal is escaping its inert stores and it is finding its way in ever increasing amounts into all aspects of life on Earth. Is there a cell in your body that does not include an atom of aluminium ? The passage of this mostly silent traveller from soil solution to each level of every food chain can be viewed as either ominous (let natural selection begin !) or benign. However, what it should not be is unknown and this gap in our knowledge is alone more than should be required to justify our research into this most fascinating of all elements. To understand aluminium you have to get inside the element and understand it from its history to its present day meanderings. This is what we aim to promote at Keele Meetings. To bring together our disparate community under one roof to discuss and digest the life of this element and this element in life. Come and join us, it is a fascinating journey which, at least in the mind of this Meeting Organiser, is only just beginning.

As usual submissions of new research in all aspects of aluminium in life (including silicon in life) are invited, for example:

  • Aluminium and Silicon Geochemistry (Including Soil Chemistry)
  • Aluminium Interactions with Microorganisms
  • Aluminium Interactions with Algae and Plants
  • Aluminium Interactions with Invertebrates and Vertebrates
  • Analytical Aluminium Chemistry
  • Inorganic Aluminium Chemistry
  • Bioinorganic Aluminium Chemistry
  • Clinical Aluminium Chemistry
  • Aluminium Biochemistry
  • Aluminum in Food, Cosmetics and Drugs
  • Aluminium in Health and Disease (Man and Laboratory Animals)
  • Silicon Deposition in Biota and Man

This list is by no means exhaustive and the final programme will as usual be governed by the quality of the submissions. The Keele Meetings on Aluminium have gained a reputation for the dissemination and discussion of high quality research. They are also considered to be informal and friendly meetings at which old acquaintances are renewed and new friendships and collaborations are born. I do hope that you will join us at The Sixth Keele Meeting in Portugal and share with us your latest research on our favourite metal, aluminium.

Christopher Exley

Call for Papers

The Keele Meetings on Aluminium are organised to provide a forum for the presentation and discussion of new and previously unpublished research. Papers are invited in any area of aluminium research. The content of the Scientific Programme will as is usual for Keele Meetings be organised according to the nature of the contributed papers. The agenda will be set by the most timely research in the field. Submissions are sought for both Platform and Poster presentations. Both of these involve some degree of oral presentation. Platform presentations are allocated 30 minutes. Only 20 minutes should be used to present research. Each Platform presentation will be followed by a 10 minute discussion period. This emphasis on discussion is a key element of the Keele Meetings and Session Chairs will enforce these times with the utmost rigour ! Participants presenting Posters will be allocated a 5 minute oral slot within an appropriate Platform Session to ‘advertise’ their Poster.

Prizes are available for the ‘Best Postgraduate Presentation’ (Platform or Poster) and ‘Best Poster’. All presentations, Platform and Poster, will be eligible for submission for publication in the Journal of Inorganic Biochemistry. The Keele Meeting Issue of JIB will be a regular issue of the journal (see for example, JIB 97, Number 1) and all submissions will be subject to peer review.

If you are interested in presenting your research at the Sixth Keele Meeting on Aluminium please send a 150 word abstract of your presentation to Dr C Exley, Birchall Centre for Inorganic Chemistry and Materials Science, Lennard-Jones Laboratories, Keele University, Staffordshire, ST5 5BG, UK. Abstract submission by email ( attachment using WORD is preferred.

Deadline for submission of abstracts is 31st October 2004.

Please be prompt.

JD Birchall Memorial Lecture

In 2005 the JD Birchall Memorial Lecture will be given by Professor Daniel P Perl, Professor of Pathology, Psychiatry and Neurobiology, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York, USA. The title of his talk is:

The Association of Aluminum and Neurodegenerative Disease (1980 to 2005) Personal Recollections and Future Perspectives

Timetable and Scientific Programme

Saturday 26th February 2005

17.00 Registration / Poster Assembly

20.00 Welcome to Meeting / Welcome Buffet

Sunday 27th February 2005

09.00 Conference

13.00 Lunch

14.30 Conference

18.30 End of First Day

20.00 Dinner

Monday 28th February 2005

09.00 Conference

14.00 Lunch

15.00 Free Afternoon

20.00 Dinner

21.00 Wine Reception and Poster Session

Tuesday 1st March 2005

09.00 Conference

13.05 Lunch

14.30 Conference

17.00 JD Birchall Memorial Lecture

20.00 Conference Dinner and Prize Giving


The Conference is run at cost. This means that the Conference Fees pay for the major costs of the Conference. All participants will pay the Conference Fee of €600 (six hundred Euro's), per person for single room occupancy or €520 (five hundred and twenty Euro's) per person for double room occupancy.

Accompanying guests will be charged the double occupancy rate of €520 and will be treated as delegates.

The Conference Fee includes: Registration; Accommodation (26th, 27th,28th & 1st); All meals (Evening Buffet on 26th of February to Breakfast on the 2nd March) including the Port Tasting and the Conference Dinner; The use of all of the Hotel Facilities.

Delegates requiring other combinations of accommodation and attendance etc. are asked to contact by email the local conference organiser Professor Paula Gonçalves for an estimate.

Method of Payment:


By cheque (In Euro's) payable to Universidade de Aveiro mailed together with a completed registration/accommodation form (see end of this announcement). The name of the participant(s) must be clearly identified on the reverse of the cheque.


By bank transfer (In Euro's) to the Caixa Geral de Depósitos-Agência de Aveiro, account nr. PT50003501230009770193010 in favour of Universidade de Aveiro (Aluminium Meeting 2005) at Campus Universitário de Santiago, 3810-193 Aveiro (Portugal), stating your full name and address (please, make sure that any transfer charges are not deducted from the Registration/Accommodation Fee).

If you have any questions about payment please contact Paula Gonçalves.

The number of places available at the Sixth Keele Meeting will be restricted to maintain the informal and friendly atmosphere that is characteristic of the Meeting. If you intend to attend the Conference please download the Pre-registration form and post, fax or e-mail it as an attachment as soon as possible to either Chris Exley or Paula Gonçalves.

Please note that confirmation of your place at the meeting can only be made upon receipt of the Conference Fee and the Registration/Accommodation Form .

The Conference Fee and the Registration/Accommodation Form must be received by 10th December 2004.

If participation is cancelled before December 31, 2004 in writing, the registration fee will be refunded with a reduction of 30% to cover administrative costs.

(Later bookings will only be possible at the discretion of the local hosts.)


Five postgraduate bursaries are now available for students making presentations (Platform or Poster) at the Conference. These bursaries will cover the Conference Fee for shared room occupancy (€520). Please indicate that you would like to be considered for a bursary when you submit your abstract.


In 2005 the Sixth Keele Meeting on Aluminium will be held at the Palace Hotel do Bussaco near Luso in Portugal.


Buçaco is situated 120 km from the airport of Porto (Oporto) and 230 km from the airport of Lisboa (Lisbon). Both have many flights to European destinations. Lisbon is the main airport for transatlantic flights. An airport minibus service is available to the railway stations S. Bento (Oporto) and Sta Apolónia (Lisbon).

TAP Air Portugal has agreed with the University of Aveiro, in the ambit of the 6th Keele Meeting on Aluminium, to be held in Bussaco from the 26th of February to the 2nd of March 2005, to offer a discount to the participants who make their flight booking and buy their ticket exclusively through TAP Air Portugal’s website.

The discounts offered are the following:
- 10% in economy class
- 20% in business class

The code IT5TPCG05 has been given to this conference and it must be mentioned when making the booking in order to benefit from the discount.

The Palace Hotel do Bussaco can be reached locally via the bus lines "Rodoviária da Beira Litoral" from the railway stations Mealhada (15 km) and Coimbra (29 km). At the airports and at all railway stations taxi services are available. A minibus service will be available from the airport of Porto and from the railway station of Aveiro to the Palace Hotel do Bussaco. If you would like help with transport to the hotel please contact the local organiser, Paula Gonçalves, with your flight times/travel arrangements etc.

Social Programme

In addition to the social events which are part of the Conference Programme and therefore included in the Conference Fee, the local organisers have arranged a City Tour of the historic coastal town Aveiro. If you are interested in finding out more about this tour and to reserve a seat in advance contact Paula Gonçalves.


General enquiries should be made to either Chris Exley or Paula Gonçalves.

Abstracts should be sent to Chris Exley.

Enquiries concerning The Conference Fee, Accommodation, Travel, The Venue and The Social Programme should be made directly to Paula Gonçalves.

Chris Exley
Birchall Centre for Inorganic Chemistry and Materials Science
Lennard-Jones Laboratories
Keele University
Staffordshire ST5 5BG
Tel: +44 1782 584080 Fax: +44 1782 712378 Email:

Paula Gonçalves
Department of Biology
University of Aveiro
Campus Universitário de Santiago,
3810-193 Aveiro

Tel: +351 234 370336 Fax: +351 234 426408 Email: