Language is a powerful tool that in its many manifestations is a system, used for communication, comprising a finite set of arbitrary symbols and a set of rules (or grammar) by which the manipulation of these symbols is governed. In biology and medicine, the importance of languages used to represent knowledge, communicate and query information is immense. Likewise auxiliary tasks such as translation, summarization and information extraction play important roles supporting scientific research. The automation of such tasks has significantly advanced knowledge discovery in biomedicine.

Incumbent technologies that discover, read and process language are continually stretched by the vigorous demands of bio-medical scientists and there is the continual need and incentive for language techniques to evolve. Despite this, the distinct communities involved in language processing rarely borrow from one another or look over the fence to see what other approaches are in use. And yet synergistic interactions across methodological disciplines and across different topics are frequently the harbingers of revolutionary technologies. In this context, it is imperative that we adopt diversification, more lateral and creative interaction between language professionals.

The International Symposium on Languages in Biology and Medicine (LBM) 2007 seeks to provide a renewed opportunity for interaction between language professionals with different methodological backgrounds. LBM was established in 2005 and the remit of this event remains highly relevant today. The symposium focuses on the languages that are in active use for biology and medicine. We are calling for original research papers on, but not limited to the topics listed below. Papers focusing on application aspects of languages in biology and medicine are also invited.

LBM2007 will consist of oral paper and poster presentation, invited speeches and a panel discussion. In addition to on-line conference proceedings, oral paper presentations will be published in BMC Bioinformatics and receive a MEDLINE citation.