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19th International Congress of Cytology

28. May - 01 June, 2016 Pacifico Yokohama, Japan

The congress held in Yokohama this year was an outstanding success. The very modern location at Pacifico Yokohama was an excellent choice. Easily accessible, a pleasant location with the very latest in technical equipment. Internet access was fast, free and available everywhere.


The Japanese Society of Cytology had held their annual meeting directly before the start of the congress on the Sunday when registration opened. Many stayed and experienced a truly international meeting. The IAC examinations were also held on the Sunday morning leaving the participants free of any nervousness and able to concentrate on the days to come.

At the opening ceremony in the main hall of the convention center local dignitaries, the IAC President, Dr. Phillipe Viehl and the Congress President, Dr. Aoki expressed their pleasure to warmly welcome participants from far and wide. 

FS VS Honorary Award
It was also a very great pleasure to present the nine richly deserved IAC Awards. One surprised recipient was Dr. Volker Schneider (right) former IAC Secretary-Treasurer and Chairman of the International Board of Cytopathology who was presented with an "Academy Honorary Award". Unknown to him Dr. Fernando Schmitt (left) had looked into his life and work and amused everyone with some pictures from his past to honor him for his many contributions for the International Academy of Cytology.The Welcome Reception afterwards provided everyone with a chance to meet up and talk. The wonderful and generous selection of refreshments and samples of local food rounded off a wonderful evening. Kampai!


By Monday morning many registrants had received an e-mail introducing a special application specifically created for the congress. Once downloaded onto a smart phone or mobile device this app provided a clear presentation of the program and had all the information needed to plan a personal agenda for each day. It was a great help with the wide variety of parallel symposia, slides seminars, workshops, poster presentations, 'Meet the Expert' and other meetings. The app also enabled registrants to participate and respond at slide seminars and view the results as well as all the slides. Looking for a particular lecture? ...ask the app!

The industrial exhibition was the location for poster presentations and coffee breaks where old friends and colleagues met and new friends were made. Midday meals could be had at one of the eight sponsored luncheon seminars which were very popular.

Award lectures, Keynote lectures, Meet the Expert: knowledge, views and experiences were presented and acknowledged. Posters were ICC 2016 CaligraphyICC 2016 Message Boardmounted viewed and discussed. There were companion meetings and business meetings. On both Monday and Tuesday, for over twelve hours from 7am to 7pm the activity didn't stop. And if anyone felt they could get away for a while and relax why not have a go at Ikebana or calligraphy. At the end of the day was the IAC Annual General Meeting.


The congress theme "New Innovative Technologies Changing Cytology" was certainly well chosen. The tried and trusted has it's place but the future will and is bringing changes. The digital world is providing amazing forms of communication and teaching opportunities. Molecular technology has already opened new and exciting possibilities and will continue to be an important way forward. The 2013 International Congress produced the Paris System for Reporting Urinary Cytology and the 2016 congress has seen that the Yokohama System for Breast Reporting is now in motion.


Tuesday evening saw everyone who had a ticket guided to the wonderful venue for the Gala Dinner. The Osanbashi PierICC 2016 Gala dinner 1 is, amongst other things, a terminal for cruise ships and also has a multi-purpose hall with beautiful wooden flooring reminiscent of an old sailing ship. The walls of the hall were lined with food stations and the center with exquisitely laid dining tables. The fun began with a greeting ceremony which entailed smashing open ceremonial sake barrels and then the buffet was declared open. As always with such a selection, choices have to be made and the selections were excellent and varied. Not sure about Sake? Well there were beautifully dressed experts to help you choose from the 10 brands on offer.


The first part of the evening was accompanied by a brass band of very accomplished medical students. Then, at some point in the evening everyone was asked to take a seat, the lights went out and the "Wrecking Crew Orchestra" amazed everyone with a lightshow dance inspired by the 80´s cult film "Tron".... Wow, we didn´t expect that !ICC 2016 Gala dinner 3

To round it all up the walk back out into the evening air presented the amazing nighttime skyline of the Yokohama waterfront that enthralled everyone.


The final day was also packed with meetings and the closing ceremony came all too soon. The Congress President, Dr. Aoki expresses his delight and thanks to all participants, the new IAC President, Dr. Robert Osamura was welcomed and announced the new IAC Committee Chairmen. Then the President-Elect, Dr. Andrew Field invited everyone to the next international congress in Sydney, Australia in 2019. It looks as if another memorable congress is coming up. The promotion video raised everyone´s heartbeat – sun, sand and an exciting city to discover.


For those who attended, this international congress will remain in their memory as a truly fantastic experience and to help maintain the memories the congress organizers have provided a link to many wonderful photographs. It has to be said the organization was great. Thanks to all of you at Congress Corporation, Tokyo, Japan. All photographs courtesy of the official event photographer.

© The International Academy of Cytology