129th annual meeting of the American Neurological Association

08/24/04

Coaxing nerve fibers and cells to repair injuries in the spinal cord and brain … translating basic research in brain tumors and Parkinson's disease from the laboratory to the clinic … tailoring clinical trials to specific neurologic disorders … exploring the new technology of RNA interference. These are some of the highlights of the 129th Annual Meeting of the American Neurological Association in Toronto, October 2 to 6, 2004.

Leading researchers from around the world will present 11 platform talks and 250 refereed poster presentations at the world's preeminent neurology meeting. Symposium subjects will include:

Regeneration and Repair--Nerves in the central nervous system--the brain and spinal cord--don't recover from injury the way peripheral nerves do. But could they? In recent years, basic scientists have made tremendous progress in uncovering the mechanisms that inhibit regeneration and repair of nerves and nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord. Monday morning's Presidential Symposium will highlight some of the most promising advances in these research areas.

From Laboratory Bench to Bedside--Some recent advances in the basic neurosciences are already being assessed in patients. A special Monday afternoon symposium on "translational research" will describe the sometimes bumpy road from successful preclinical successes to safe and effective treatment of human disease. Experimental treatments for brain tumors, Parkinson's disease, and peripheral nerves disorders will be in the spotlight.

Clinical Trials: One Size Does Not Fit All--Parkinson's disease is not cancer … is not epilepsy. If clinical trials are to prove the value of different therapies, they must take into account the clinical attributes of the diseases in question. On Tuesday morning, a panel of clinical trials experts will illustrate how studies have been designed for maximum value in Parkinson's disease, multiple sclerosis, neuromuscular disease and epilepsy.

Excitement in the Laboratory--It's called RNA interference and it is turning heads throughout biomedical science. Many scientists believe that interfering with RNA will be safer and simpler than genetic engineering that targets DNA. The prospects of RNA interference for treatment of neurological disorders will be discussed at a Wednesday morning symposium … along with advances in bone marrow transplantation for autoimmune diseases … deep brain stimulation--the so-called "brain pacemaker"--for movement disorders … and possible approaches to treating the devastating prion diseases, most famously "mad cow" disease.

Source: Eurekalert & others

Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 21 Feb 2009
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