Citation: Kuehl P, “The 21st International Society of Aerosols in Medicine Congress”. ONdrugDelivery Magazine, Issue 74 (Apr2017), pp 42-43.

The International Society for Aerosols in Medicine (ISAM) is a scientific society focused on all areas of aerosols including health effects of aerosols and pulmonary drug delivery. ISAM was founded in 1970 with an objective to foster interdisciplinary communication within the areas of aerosols in medicine. Current society membership includes researchers from academia and industry, physicians and regulatory scientists, all of whom are focused on pulmonary research. The society holds a congress every other year to bring its membership together in a dynamic setting to review the current state-of-the-art research and brainstorm new scientific strategies.


ISAM was founded in 1970 with the first congresses held in Baden, Austria and Vichy, France. The focus of the society is on the interdisciplinary co-operation and exchange of information in all areas of aerosols in medicine. These include pulmonary drug delivery and the health effects of inhaled aerosols. The society utilises many different venues to communicate the scientific findings including a congress every two years and publication within the ISAM journal, the Journal of Aerosol Medicine and Pulmonary Drug Delivery (JAMPDD), which has an impact factor of 3.041.

To foster networking among its membership, ISAM maintains six different focus groups:

  • Regulatory Affairs and Standardisation Issues
  • New Devices and Emerging Therapies
  • Paediatrics and Cystic Fibrosis
  • Imaging, Modelling and Physiology of Aerosols in the Lung
  • Environmental/Occupational Health
  • Plus a networking group for Graduate Students, Post-Docs, Fellows and Junior Faculty.

Membership within ISAM enables participation in the networking groups, subscription to JAMPDD, reduced congress fees, reduced membership to joint organisations (European Respiratory Society), and access to the ISAM Textbook of Aerosol Medicine. The textbook, which is on the ISAM website, provides unique and comprehensive coverage of a broad range of topics related to aerosol science and clinical applications of aerosol therapy. It has been written by content experts and provides concise and up-to-date information on various topics of interest to aerosol scientists and clinicians.


The 21st ISAM congress will be held in Santa Fe, NM, US from June 3-7, 2017 at the Eldorado Hotel and Spa ( Previous recent congresses have been held in Chapel Hill, NC, US and Munich, Germany. An ISAM congress typically has about 300 attendees from across industry, academia, clinical practice and regulatory sciences. The congress provides an environment that fosters face-to-face interactions within aerosols in medicine.


The 21st ISAM congress will be preceded with three workshops each with a different focus. The workshops will be a full-day (June 3, 2017) immersion into each topic, employing international experts in an interactive setting with the attendees. The three workshops are: “New Frontiers in Inhalation Technology”, “Current State of E. Cigarettes and Their Impact on Pulmonary Health”, and “A Lab Practical for Inhalation Studies”.

The “New Frontiers in Inhalation Technology” workshop is a joint workshop organised by the International Pharmaceutical Aerosol Consortium on Regulation and Science (IPAC-RS) and ISAM. The workshop will include presentations on: novel technologies for inhalation products; evolving technologies for monitoring use of inhalation devices; a patient perspective on new technologies; and a review of the current global regulatory status for inhaled therapies. The IPACRS/ ISAM joint workshop continues to be a cornerstone of the ISAM congress workshops and has always provided a unique dialogue between scientists and regulatory experts. This year’s session is sure to provide the same.

With the rapidly changing state of electronic cigarette technology, movement towards regulations and the continued expansion of their use, the workshop on the “Current State of E.Cigarettes and Their Impact on Pulmonary Healt” promises to be well-attended. This workshop will include presentations on the in vitro, in vivo and regulatory aspects of electronic cigarettes. The in vitro presentations will include aerosol characterisation (how to do it and what the results say) and the in vitro tolerance findings within multiple different in vitro models. The in vivo data presentations will include both clinical and non-clinical studies of pharmacokinetics, addiction, and tolerance. With the recent publication of the FDA’s Premarket Tobacco Application (PMTA), the presentations on the regulatory aspects will reflect the current interpretation/application of testing to meet the PMTA guidelines.

The workshop on “Lab Practical for Inhalation Studies” will provide a unique hands-on experience for the attendee with experts in operating and conducting inhalation studies. The attendees will have the opportunity to learn about, handle and operate a variety of inhalation products including:

  • Nebulisers (compressed air jet, ultra-sonic, vibrating mesh)
  • Dry powder devices (clinical and non-clinical)
  • Exposure systems
  • Particle-sizing devices (impactors and electronic devices)
  • Other unique devices.

This workshop will enable attendees to better link the science behind device design and operation with applications in their own research.


The scientific program for ISAM 2017 will start on June 4, 2017 and conclude on June 7, 2017. Over these three and a half days, a variety of sessions will be presented that are designed to present current/novel/evolving data and technologies to the attendees while also providing the opportunity for scientific dialogue.

Topics will include asthma/COPD, infectious disease, nasal drug delivery, in vitro cell models, therapeutic and diagnostic gases, pulmonary fibrosis, personalised medicine, new/emerging aerosol therapy, and electronic cigarettes. Each session will include invited speaker(s) based on their expertise within the focus area and will also include presentation(s) selected from the submitted abstracts. In this manner the congress will include the most current state-of-the-art science within each area.

Additionally, during the scientific program, ISAM will present several awards. These awards include:

  • The Thomas T. Mercer Award
  • Career Achievement
  • Young Investigator
  • Student Research
  • Jurai Ferin
  • Best Oral Presentation.

Details on the criteria for each award and the submission process can be found on the ISAM 2017 congress website.


The organisation committee for ISAM 2017 is seeking the submission of high-quality abstracts for the 21st congress. Abstracts can be submitted via the congress website and will be reviewed by the organisation committee for scientific merit. All accepted abstracts will be presented as a poster throughout the congress and are indexed by the JAMPDD.

Additionally, to ensure that the scientific program represents the current state-of-the-art in the designated areas, multiple high-quality abstracts will be selected for oral presentations within the congress program. Therefore, scientists are encouraged to submit high-quality scientific abstracts based on novel research.


ISAM congresses provide an opportunity for companies to showcase current technologies or products to scientists and clinicians alike. The setting enables an intimate interaction for discussions, product display, and training. Any interested company is referenced to the sponsorship page on the congress website.

The 21st ISAM congress will provide attendees with a high-quality meeting to develop scientific knowledge for researchers at all levels. It is with great excitement that the organisation committee encourages anyone interested in aerosols in medicine to consider attendance, abstract submission, sponsorship or exhibition.

Further information, including contact details, is available at the ISAM Congress website. Hope to see you all in Santa Fe!