Symposium Showcases Clinical and Translational Research in the Neurosciences

More than 200 scientists and clinical investigators gathered last week to share insights and learn more about translational and clinical neuroscience research underway at the University of Kentucky.

The 2016 Clinical-Translational Neuroscience Research Symposium, hosted by the Kentucky Neuroscience Institute, featured nearly 100 poster and oral presentations focused on the latest scientific advances in a wide variety of topics related to the neurosciences being conducted by UK research groups.

According to Dr. Larry B. Goldstein, chair of the UK Department of Neurology and KNI co-director, the symposium's goal was to provide a venue for “showcasing the incredible breadth of translational and clinical neuroscience research at UK and to foster the development of collaborations between clinicians and scientists.”

The event drew a broad range of neuroscience-related laboratory-based and clinical investigators from multiple departments and centers at UK. Interest in the event was so high a second poster session was offered to accommodate all the submissions.

Jim Geddes, director of the UK Spinal Cord and Brain Injury Research Center, was most impressed with the quality of the work presented by graduate students, residents, postdoctoral fellows and junior faculty.

"The symposium felt like a showcase of UK's rising stars, with presentations highlighting tantalizing work in Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, stroke, and spinal cord injury, to name just a few," he said.

Dr. Robert DiPaola, dean of the UK College of Medicine, held the symposium up as an example of the atmosphere of collaboration necessary to thrive in today's science.

"Given the rapidly increasing technologies and discoveries in medicine, it is crucial that we bring back these experiences as a way to guide future research to best benefit patients —in other words, bedside to bench," DiPaola said. "Gatherings like these serve to foster the sharing of ideas among scientists and clinicians, which ultimately benefits the patient."

Goldstein was delighted by the response to the symposium.

"This symposium supports our goal of bringing together clinicians, clinical researchers, and laboratory based investigators to develop new knowledge and to bring the power of advanced medicine to the patients we serve and beyond," Goldstein said. "The quality and extensiveness of the work is particularly noteworthy and reflects the highest caliber of science.

“Given the success of the inaugural symposium, we will most certainly be looking at repeating this event next year."

Media Contact: Laura Dawahare, Laura.Dawahare@uky.edu, (859) 257-5307