Morning Short Course

Neuro-Innovation: Exploring the Next Frontier of the Human Brain

 

Monday, February 10, 2014 | 8:30 - 11:30 am | Moscone North Convention Center | San Fransisco, CA 

 

"The human brain is one of the most complicated structures in the known universe. We have an unprecedented opportunity to develop new technologies that will allow us to map the circuits of the brain, measure activity within those circuits, and understand how their interactions maintain health and modulate human behavior.”  
Francis Collins, M.D., Ph.D., Director, NIH 
 

This short course will present an overview of the factors leading to innovation in neuroscience. This timely course coincides with the 2014 release of funding opportunities by the National Institute of Health to build a new arsenal of technologies and tools to unlock the mysteries of the brain. Panelists will include successful neuroscientists at top research-oriented universities and leaders from research institutions focused on mental health. We'll explore how innovation in neuroimaging studies are identifying the systems underlying cognition, emotion and mood. We'll explore genetic approaches to investigating the impact of psychological and physiological stress, and more recently sleep disorders. Given that new technologies such as imaging and the recording of brain activity are collecting massive amounts of data, we'll discuss the role of Big Data analytics and how information frameworks are enabling neuroscientists around the world to access rich virtual environments to advance scientific inquiry leading to new discoveries and treatments of human neurological disorders. These lessons and frameworks can be directly applied to other fields of life sciences seeking innovation.  

AGENDA:  

8:30 am Remarks

Organizer: Cindy Crowninshield, RDN, LDN, Conference Director, Cambridge Healthtech Institute

Course Adviser: Michael Fernandez, Founder, Quant 6  

9:00 am Presentation on Neuroscience: Neural Circuits as Substrates of Mental Illness and Targets for Novel Therapeutics  

Amit Etkin, M.D., Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Stanford University

Over the past two decades, neuroimaging studies have identified a set of commonly-observed changes in distributed brain systems underlying cognition, emotion and mood, amongst others. Establishment of these potential circuit-level biomarkers of key core mental processes, which may be perturbed in different ways across psychiatric disorders, has created the challenge of how to use these insights 1) to understand the nature of neural circuit deficits one or multiple psychiatric disorders, and 2) to directly guide the development of novel circuit-based therapeutics. I will discuss emerging approaches, illustrated through work in the lab, for definition of the neural circuit abnormalities associated with psychiatric disorders as a whole, as well as specific changes associated with particular disorders (e.g. anxiety, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder). I will then describe new methods for direct and non-invasive probing and manipulation of circuits and insights that this brings for the development of new circuit-targeting therapeutics. Together, these data suggest that we are now on the brink of innovation in "rational" circuit-based diagnostics and treatments for mental illness, thus going beyond the dominant psychotherapeutic and psychopharmacological tools currently available.

9:30 am Presentation on Neurogenetics: Innovating Psychiatry through Neurogenetics

Ruth O'Hara, Ph.D., Associate Professor (Research) of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences; Associate Director, Sierra-Pacific Mental Illness Education and Clinical Center, and (MIRECC) Director, National Fellowship Program in Advanced Psychiatry and Psychology Department, Stanford University School of Medicine

10:00 am Networking Refreshment Break 

10:30 am PANEL DISCUSSION: New Paradigms for Innovation Combining Big Data Analytics & Neuroscience

Brain disorders affect more than 60 million Americans costing the U.S. about $ 1 trillion each year. A revolutionary change driving neuro-innovation is needed to address this massive health care challenge with the potential to affect all areas of medical science. In this panel we'll explore how a new paradigm integrating Big Data analytics, data sharing, research collaboration, and new methods for combining government funding, corporate investment, and philanthropy will accelerate innovation in neuroscience and life sciences in general. We'll explore the public-private partnership model as a best-in-class model for combining technology and expertise and discuss the challenges and best practices for creating multi-country, multi-site initiatives creating large-scale datasets with rigorous biomarkers (e.g. genetics, imaging) to create new ways to share data between, academia, industry, non-profits and government.

Panelists: 

Amit Etkin, M.D., Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Stanford University 

Jeffrey S. Grethe, Ph.D., Co-Principal Investigator, Neuroscience Information Framework; Center for Research in Biological Systems School of Medicine, University of California, San Diego 

Martin Kohn, MS, MD, FACEP, FACPE, Chief Medical Scientist, Care Delivery Systems, IBM Research

Ruth O'Hara, Ph.D., Associate Professor (Research) of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences; Associate Director, Sierra-Pacific Mental Illness Education and Clinical Center, and (MIRECC) Director, National Fellowship Program in Advanced Psychiatry and Psychology Department, Stanford University School of Medicine 

 

11:20 am Closing Remarks

11:30 am End of Course
 

FACULTY PROFILES:  

AmitEtkinAmit Etkin, M.D., Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Stanford University

Amit Etkin, M.D., Ph.D., is an Assistant Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Stanford University, and an Investigator in the VA Sierra-Pacific Mental Illness Research Education and Clinical Center (MIRECC) at the Palo Alto VA. Dr. Etkin received his MD/PhD at Columbia University with Nobel laureate Eric Kandel, completed his psychiatry residency and concurrent postdoc at Stanford University with Alan Schatzberg, and joined the faculty at Stanford in 2009. He has been awarded the BRAINS (Biobehavioral Research Award for Innovative New Scientists) R01 Award from the National Institute of Mental Health and a Dana Neuroscience Scholar Award from the Dana Foundation, and is an Associate Editor at Neuropsychopharmacology. The overarching aim of the Etkin lab is to understand the neural basis of emotional disorders and their treatment, and to leverage this knowledge to develop novel treatment interventions. For more details about my background, please see Profile.   

JeffreyGretheJeffrey S. Grethe, Ph.D., Co-Principal Investigator, Neuroscience Information Framework; Center for Research in Biological Systems School of Medicine, University of California, San Diego

Dr. Jefferey S. Grethe is co-Principal Investigator for the Neuroscience Information Framework (NIF; http://nif.nih.gov) in the Center for Research in Biological Systems (CRBS; http://crbs.ucsd.edu) at the University of California, San Diego. NIF is an open source information framework enabling neuroscientists around the world to access a rich virtual environment identifying neuroscience-relevant data and resources, to advance scientific inquiry leading to new discoveries and treatments of human neurological disorders. Unlike more general search engines, NIF provides deeper access to a more focused set of resources that are relevant to neuroscience, provides search strategies tailored to neuroscience, and also provides access to content that is traditionally "hidden" from web search engines (i.e., the hidden or deep web). Following a B.S. in Applied Mathematics from the University of California, Irvine, he received a doctorate in neurosciences with a focus on neuroinformatics and computational modeling from the University of Southern California. Throughout his career, he has been involved in enabling collaborative research, data sharing and discovery through the application of advanced informatics approaches. This started at USC with his involvement in the Human Brain Project and continues today with his work on NIF and with standards bodies such as the International Neuroinformatics Coordinating Facility.

MartinKohnMartin Kohn, MS, MD, FACEP, FACPE, Chief Medical Scientist, Care Delivery Systems, IBM Research

Dr. Kohn is Chief Medical Scientist for Care Delivery Systems in IBM Research. He is a leader in IBM’s support for the transformation of healthcare, including development of personalized care, outcomes-based models and payment reform. His research work includes healthcare population analytics and the role of expert systems in the clinical decision process, including the use of the Watson supercomputer in healthcare. He speaks frequently on the issues on healthcare transformation, the role of information technology, the Patient Centered Medical Home and clinical decision support. Dr. Kohn is a co-author of IBM’s white paper “Patient-Centered Medical Home – What, Why and How.” He is on the editorial board of the Journal of Emergency Medicine. Dr. Kohn was previously in IBM Healthcare Strategy and Change which helped healthcare systems and clinicians optimize process and make best use of health information technology. He has published multiple articles and book chapters on clinical, technical and management subjects. Dr. Kohn is an emergency physician with over 30 years of hospital-based practice and management experience. He is an alumnus of MIT, Harvard Medical School and NYU, and is a Fellow of the American College of Emergency Physicians and the American College of Physician Executives.

Ruth O'HaraRuth O'Hara, Ph.D., Associate Professor (Research) of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences; Associate Director, Sierra-Pacific Mental Illness Education and Clinical Center, and (MIRECC) Director, National Fellowship Program in Advanced Psychiatry and Psychology Department, Stanford University School of Medicine

Dr. O’Hara’s research aims to identify the physiological markers of neurocognitive impairment in a broad range of late-life disorders, including Mild Cognitive Impairment, Alzheimer’s disease (AD), Late-Life Depression, and Late-Life Anxiety disorders. Using neuroimaging and genetic approaches to investigating the impact of psychological and physiological stress, and more recently sleep disorders, her research aims to: (1) more fully characterize the genetic risk factors and physiological mechanisms underlying normal and pathological cognitive impairment; (2) assist with early identification of those at greatest risk for cognitive decline, and dementia; (3) increase our understanding of the role of cognitive impairment in exacerbating late-life psychiatric disorders; and (4) develop interventions aimed at reducing this impairment. For more details about my background, please see Profile.

COURSE ADVISOR: 

Michael FernandezMichael Fernandez, Founder, Quant 6 

Michael leads data science and software engineering teams executing Big Data initiatives. Michael serves on the board of NCIRE, the leading nonprofit medical research institute in the United States devoted to pioneering new treatments and providing medical care for military Veterans. He earned a BSE from The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and an MPA from Harvard University. For more details about my background, please see Profile.    

 

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