Fifty years since its inception the Albanian Neuropediatrics Society becomes member of the ICNA (International Child Neurology Association) and is on its way to becoming a fully fledged member of the international scientific community for the accurate scientific level of the research conducted in the field of child neurology.
The XII Mediterranean Meeting of Child Neurology taking place in Duress from September 14 to 16, in collaboration with the Foundation Pierfranco and Luisa Mariani Onlus and the patronage of the Venice International School of Neurological Science, represents an important window of visibility for the Albanian scientific community which gives value to the considerable effort made by the Foundation to help drive the scientific advancement of a country that is in many ways still quite backward. The commitment towards Albania started to develop thanks to the interest shown by doctor Laura Mira and professor David Zerbi who, following an intensive collaboration effort with the city of Saranda, implemented a collaboration project with the University of Tirana enabling many Albanian neurologists to study in Italy as well as many international specialists to work in Albania. "We are very excited about the results we achieved", commented prof. Zerbi. "The Albanian scientific community proves it has risen to truly high levels and the entry in the ICNA ratifies the importance of the scientific research conducted in these academic institutions."
Among the many reports presented at the conference, the ones attracting greater interest are those dedicated to cerebral paralysis in the pre-term infant. However, the researchers' attention is also drawn to the great progresses made in the field of neurogenetic syndromes and epilepsy, areas in which the Albanian scientific community stands out for having started the first epidemiology research ever conducted in the country to evaluate the preponderance of epilepsy in the child based population. The research, coordinated by Professor Jera Kruja of the University of Tirana, has even greater importance when considering that for every disease, epidemiologic research is the basis enabling to shed light on the causes and prevention possibilities, and that the opportunity of collecting accurate scientific data in the least developed areas of Europe still places a great limitation on research. "It is a unique opportunity enabling Albanian and European scientists to pool their experience and transfer the results of the most recent scientific research projects to clinical practice, enabling the treatment of children with neurologic disease," explains prof. Paolo Curatolo, chairman of the scientific committee supervising the conference.
Additionally the Duress conference, at which scientists from many areas of both Northern and Southern Europe share and compare their experiences, represents an opportunity to highlight the high level neuropediatric research performed in the Mediterranean countries and encourages a spirit of scientific collaboration that rises above strongly heterogeneous social-political situations that have always characterized this part of the world.
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