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Center for Neuroregeneration | Houston Methodist
2019 CNS NEUROREGENERATION STRATEGIES:
DISCOVERY AND IMPLEMENTATION
 
SYMPOSIUM SUMMARY
There has been a remarkable acceleration in the clinical application of neurostimulation devices and brain computer interfaces. In parallel, regeneration biologists have discovered new pathways for neural plasticity, neurite growth and synaptogenesis that are being explored in research models of injury and degeneration. Here we propose to stimulate a discussion and create active collaborative networks aimed at first, unlocking the mechanisms of neural stimulation in animal models and humans and , second, creating partnerships that explore how molecular pathways of neural plasticity can be co-applied with neural stimulation methodologies in humans. Despite some evidence of efficacy there is a weak understanding of how stimulation works at the physiological and, particularly the cellular level.

A major opportunity exists for clinical/basic research partnerships to accelerate discovery of the mechanisms of stimulation but also inject exciting concepts from the field of neural regeneration to create combinatorial approaches that will further the efficacy of patient therapy.

This symposium is the second in a bi-annual series that began in 2016. It’s the first workshop its kind with the stated goal of catalyzing the communication and functional cooperation across what has long been a set of siloed sub-disciplines in neurobiology, engineering and physiology. The format is distinct from established physiology conferences and dedicated neural regeneration conferences in several ways including; 1) highly focused on the gap between molecular regeneration and electrophysiology, 2) concept driven by clinician and experimentalists that are currently problem solving in human therapy and 3) focused on the establishment of cross training and expertise development in graduate and clinical fellows.

SCIENTIFIC NEED AND TIMELINESS

There is a tremendous gap in communication between experimental physiologists/regeneration biologists and researchers developing neural activation devices. This symposium focuses on the intersection of biology and physiology to 1) identify new principles in how neural activity effects plasticity and regeneration of connections, and 2) create new combined regenerative collaboration approaches with new technology and concepts.

SPECIFIC PROGRAM
The symposium will be comprised of six plenary sessions over two days chaired by prominent researchers and clinicians from the major research institutes in the Houston area. The speakers in each session are international leaders in computer interfaces and brain signaling, neuroplasticity, biomaterial engineering, and cutting edge regenerative model systems.

Our symposium will solicit abstracts from junior investigators and trainees across the country with focus on underrepresented groups and women in science. The organizing committee will review submitted abstracts and provide travel awards to outstanding submissions. Winners will also be invited to give podium talks and participate in breakout sessions focused on facilitating new ideas for collaboration in the traditionally discrete disciplines of engineering, physiology, and neural regeneration.

PROGRAM AGENDA
Six plenary sessions will be held covering the following topics:

Developmental Control, Specificity and Connectivity, Conditioning and Plasticity Human Neural Plasticity: Neural Activity in the Patient, Activity Dependent Plasticity: Neural Repair Systems, Emerging Topics

 

For more information, click here.

AWARDS & GRANTS:

The Center for Neuroregeneration research is funded by the following organizations:

  • National Institute of Health
  • Department of Defense, Government of the USA
  • National Science Foundation
  • National Institute of Aging
  • Paralyzed Veterans of America
  • Paralysis Project
  • The Utley Foundation
  • Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation
  • Frank and Penny Webster
  • The Naylor Foundation
  • Junta de Andalucia, España
  • Wings for Life-Spinal Cord Research Foundation
  • The Adler Family
  • Mission Connect - A TIRR Foundation


We thank each and every one of our sponsors for the tremendous support!
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