At the European QSAR Meeting held in Yugoslavia in 1986, some key participants from the UK identified the niche for a regular simple and effective means to communicate developments in the field. They formed the UK QSAR Discussion Group, later renamed UK QSAR & Chemoinformatics Group to reflect the synergy between these fields, to meet twice yearly at venues throughout the country. Participating affiliations sponsor the Meetings that are frequented by up to 120 delegates in academia, commerce and industry based not only in the UK but also on the continent.
Membership is complimentary and open to all with an interest in QSAR and Chemoinformatics. The nearly 400 members develop and apply methods in the agrochemical, cosmetic, detergent, paint, pharmaceutical and software industries as well as in academia. To cater for this diverse mix, the one-day Meetings adopt a blend of theme-based and miscellaneous presentations delivered by speakers who range from postgraduate students to renowned investigators from the UK as well as abroad. The scope is largely property prediction, data analysis and molecular modelling, which are depicted in the Group's logo as an octanol:water partition held in place by a set of Cartesian coordinates, and new perspectives to extend these interest are always welcome.
The Group's activities are often considered to be an invaluable service to the QSAR and chemoinformatics community. Delegates find that they are able to share their findings in a friendly and constructive environment. Students get the opportunity to visit varied work settings and network with potential colleagues. Sponsoring hosts find the Meetings effective at enhancing awareness of their research activities amongst their colleagues insided their own company, while promoting the scientific profile of their organisations to the outside.
The scientific programme is identified by way of discussion between the host and the Committee. Registration is usually from ~9.15am and the presentations start at 10am. After 3-4 talks, delegates break for lunch and often a poster session, before reconvening for another 3-4 speakers. The meeting ends with afternoon tea at ~4pm. Attendance at the meeting is without charge.