Home Channels Biochemistry, Structural & Cellular Biology Editor Reflections: Cell Press' Catarina Sacristan Comments on Autophagy eSymposia

Editor Reflections: Cell Press’ Catarina Sacristan Comments on Autophagy eSymposia


The Autophagy: Mechanisms & Disease” eSymposia brought together the autophagy community from around the world, literally encompassing researchers from 6 continents, 31 countries and a multitude of timezones, to connect virtually with each other and share the latest advances in the field– from molecular discoveries to medical impacts.  Editors flocked to the event to find out the latest directions and follow new leads. High-impact journals including Science, Nature, Cell Press, EMBO and more were all there, seeking new frontiers as they rapidly emerge in this exciting and dynamic field. 

Here Cell Press’ Dr. Catarina Sacristan, Editor-in-Chief of the journal Trends in Immunology, shares her thoughts about the meeting, and top tips for publishing.

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Editor Reflections

Why did you attend this conference? 

Dr. Sacristán: I mostly commission articles from authors, and to do so, I am constantly interacting with the scientific community. This means keeping myself up to date with research advances and networking with scientists, as well as building relationships. I do this in part by attending many scientific conferences, such as this high-caliber one. I evaluate what the current research trends in immunology and related disciplines are on a regular basis to properly commission articles.

Moreover, this meeting discussing “Autophagy: Mechanisms of Disease” is at the forefront of many emerging approaches to gain an improved understanding of the molecular pathways underlying the regulation of autophagy, and the key role of this process role in inflammation, immunity, and disease. It is thus a key conference for Trends in Immunology to attend and engage in. My aim was to interact with as many speakers, postdocs, and students as I could, and gain knowledge on new advances in the field.


What do you enjoy most about attending Keystone eSymposia virtual conferences?

Dr. Sacristán: One aspect that I really enjoy about eSymposia, is that it maintains a high standard of scientific quality, and the topics are quite focused and timely. In addition, when available, I thoroughly enjoy interacting and discussing science with many scientists!


What advice would you offer scientists who are thinking about editorial careers?

Dr. Sacristán: I would suggest that you work on your writing skills, your breadth of scientific knowledge, and your social and communication skills. Practice critical thinking when reading scientific manuscripts. If you really want to be an editor, do so as quickly as you can, but postdoctoral experience will greatly enrich your qualifications.


What’s your top tip for a scientist looking to publish in your journal?

Dr. Sacristán: Authors should ensure that their articles are scientifically solid, based on the last 1–4 years of seminal research in their field of expertise, preferably from high-tier journals. The subject matter should fit within the scope of the journal (listed on the website); it should be timely, focused, and reach out to a broader readership. I also highly recommend that manuscripts be thoroughly proofread prior to submission.


What’s the best way for autophagy researchers to get in touch with you?

Dr. Sacristán: Attendees can reach me via:


Catarina Sacristán is the Editor-in-Chief (EiC) of Trends in Immunology.

She received her PhD in immunology from Tufts University, followed by postdoctoral research in Mexico, and then at NYU. She also did a stint in cardiovascular research at a biomedical engineering firm. She enjoys thinking about immunology, genetics, signaling, imaging, virology, metabolism, neuroscience, cancer, therapeutics, and more. She came to Cell Press from The Journal of Experimental Medicine and has worked in publishing since 2014. She was EiC of Trends in Molecular Medicine (2015-2018); Acting EiC of The Lancet Haematology (Jan-Jul 2018); consulting editor for Trends in Biochemical Sciences and Immunity, as well as a guest editor at Cell. She cherishes spending time with her family, is a movie buff, and loves to read, write, ski, horseback ride, skate, dance, and listen to music.



Shannon Weiman
Shannon Weiman
Shannon Weiman earned her PhD in Biomedical Sciences from the University of California, San Diego, specializing in microbiology and immunology. Prior to joining the Keystone Symposia team, she worked as a freelance writer for leaders in academic, industry and government research, including Stanford University’s Biomedical Innovation Initiative, the University of Colorado’s Biofrontiers Program, UCSF, the FDA and the American Society for Microbiology.

Keystone Symposia on Molecular and Cellular Biology is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization with a 47-year history of convening open, peer-reviewed conferences that connect the scientific community and accelerate life science discovery.