Conference Program

Building on the success of previous Precision Neuroscience Conferences hosted in Oslo, Norway in 2018, and Roanoke in 2016, the 2022 program features 29 prominent thought leaders in mental health, brain cancer, neurodevelopment, aging, neurodegeneration, and injury research.

Session Location

The 2022 Precision Neuroscience Conference will take place in the Washington Room at the Hotel Roanoke. View the Hotel Map for Directions

Wednesday, May 25

7:30 – 8:15: Registration – Outside of Washington Room, Hotel Roanoke [View Hotel Map]

8:15 – 8:30: Welcome and Conference Overview, Washington Room | Michael Friedlander, Ph.D.

Session 1: Neurodevelopment

8:30 – 8:55: Michelle Olsen, Ph.D., Virginia Tech | “Astrocyte Dysfunction Contributes to Disordered Breathing in Rett Syndrome”

8:55 – 9:20: Anthony-Samuel LaMantia, Ph.D., Fralin Biomedical Research Institute – Virginia Tech | “The Odds of Small Things: Polygenic Foundations and Phenotypic Variability in a Neurodevelopmental Disorder”

9:20 – 9:45: Catherine Limperopoulos, Ph.D., Children’s National Hospital | “Prenatal Origins of Neuropsychiatric Disorders: The Role of Quantitative Fetal MRI”

9:45 – 10:05: Break

10:05 – 10:30: Sharon Landesman Ramey, Ph.D., Fralin Biomedical Research Institute – Virginia Tech | “Intensive Early Interventions: Transforming Children’s Neurobehavioral Trajectories”

10:30 – 10:55: Ukpong Eyo, Ph.D., University of Virginia Health System| “Understanding Microglia as a Novel Target in Seizure Disorders”

10:55 – 11:20: Sharon Swanger, Ph.D., Fralin Biomedical Research Institute – Virginia Tech | “Synapse- and Cell-Type-Specific Dysfunction in a Dravet Syndrome Mouse Model”

11:20 – 12:30: Lunch and Keynote Speaker: Carol A. Mason, Ph.D., Columbia University | “Wiring the Eye to the Brain for Binocular Vision: Lessons from the Albino Visual System”

Session 2: Aging, Neurodegeneration, and Injury

12:30 – 12:55: Hilde Loge Nilsen, Ph.D., University of Oslo | “Base Excision Repair as a Risk Modulator of Parkinson’s Disease”

12:55 – 1:20: David Cifu, M.D., Virginia Commonwealth University Health| “Repetitive Concussions from Blast and Combat Exposure: Update from the Prospective, Longitudinal Study of the Long-term Impact of Military-Relevant Brain Injury Consortium, 2013-2021”

1:20 – 2:05: Break

2:05 – 2:30: Steve Finkbeiner, M.D., Ph.D., University of California San Francisco | “Finding Causes and Treatments for Neurodegenerative Disease with Stem Cells, Genomics, Robotics, and Artificial Intelligence”

2:30 – 2:55: Asta Kristine Haberg, M.D., Ph.D., Norwegian University of Science and Technology | “Building Blocks of Memory Across the Lifespan”

2:55 – 3:20: Clive Bramham, M.D., Ph.D., University of Bergen | “The Arc of Synaptic Memory: From Hub Protein to Retroviral-like Capsid”

3:20 – 3:45: Michelle Theus, Ph.D., Virginia Tech | “Eph/Ephrin Regulation of Neurovascular and Neuroimmune Health in Brain Injury Across the Age Spectrum”

3:45 – 4:30: Keynote Speaker: Jan H. J. Hoeijmakers, Ph.D., Professor of Molecular Genetics at Erasmus University Rotterdam, Principal Investigator, Global Faculty University of Cologne, and at Princess Maxima Center for Pediatric Oncology | “How DNA Damage Leads to Transcription Stress, Proteinopathies and Dementia: The Impact of Nutrition”

4:30 – 5:30: Clinical Panel | Tor Haugstad, M.D., Ph.D., Kathryn L. Holloway, M.D., Karen Johnston, M.D., M.Sc., Anita Kablinger, M.D., and Aashit K. Shah, M.D.

6:00 – 8:30: Reception at Center in the Square

Thursday, May 26

8:20 – 8:30: Welcome by Michael Friedlander, Ph.D.

Session 3: Mental Health

8:30 – 8:55: Gretchen N. Neigh, Ph.D., Virginia Commonwealth University | “Adolescent Stress Causes Long-term Sex-specific Changes in Neural Metabolism and Behavior”

8:55 – 9:20: Shannon Farris, Ph.D., Fralin Biomedical Research Institute – Virginia Tech | Mitochondrial Diversity at Social Synapses”

9:20 – 9:45: Jukka-Pekka Onnela, D.Sc., Harvard University | “Smartphone-based Digital Phenotyping in Mental Health”

9:45 – 10:15: Break

10:15 – 10:40: Anders Nykjaer, M.D., Ph.D., Aarhus University | “The Neurexin Receptor Sorcs1: Another Player in Autism Spectrum Disorder?

10:40 – 11:05: Read Montague, Ph.D., Fralin Biomedical Research Institute – Virginia Tech | Decoding Monoamine Signaling in Conscious Humans”

11:05 – 11:50: Keynote Speaker Joshua A. Gordon, M.D., Ph.D., National Institute of Mental Health, NIH | “A Framework for Precision Psychiatry: Integrating Dimensional and Diagnostic Approaches”

11:50 – 1:00: Lunch

1:00 – 2:00: Poster Talks (View Abstracts)

  • “Arc Nanobodies: A New Tool for Functional Studies of Arc Protein in Neurons”
    Rodolfo Baldinotti, University of Bergen
  • “The Proneurotrophin Receptor SorCS2 Interacts with Wnt Receptor Ror2 to Regulate Embryogenesis and Brain Development Across Vertebrates”
    Alena Salasova, Aarhus University
  • “Visualizing Cell-Specific De Novo Translation in the Hippocampus”
    Niesha Savory, Virginia Tech
  • “BDNF/Astrocytic TrkB.T1 Signaling as a Mechanism Underlying Perisynaptic Astrocyte Process Recruitment”
    Beatriz Torres, Virginia Tech
  • “Predicting Post-Concussion Syndrome after Mild TBI with CNS Injury and Inflammation Biomarkers in Blood”
    Gerard Clarke, Norwegian University of Science and Technology
  • “Endothelial-Immune Crosstalk in the Regulation of Blood Brain Barrier Integrity Following Traumatic Brain Injury”
    Caroline de Jager, Virginia Tech
  • “Identification of New Therapeutic Targets for Glioblastoma Independent of PI3K”
    Erin McDaid, Virginia Tech
  • “Binary Classification of PPMI Longitudinal Samples Using Whole Blood Transcriptome Data and Age”
    Nicholas Minster, George Mason University

2:00 – 3:00: Break and Poster Viewing (View Abstracts)

Session 4: Brain Cancer

3:00 – 3:25: Eugene Hwang, M.D., Children’s National Hospital | “Immunotherapy: A Path Towards Fulfilling the Hope and Promise for Children with Brain Cancer”

3:25 – 3:50: Jennifer Munson, Ph.D., Fralin Biomedical Research Institute – Virginia Tech | “Interstitial Flow as a Driver of Glioblastoma Development”

3:50 – 4:15: Justin D. Lathia, Ph.D., Lerner Research Institute, Cleveland Clinic; Department of Molecular Medicine, Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine | “Exploiting Sex Differences in Glioblastoma for Next Generation of Immunotherapies”

4:15 – 4:40: Rolf Bjerkvig, Ph.D., University of Bergen | “Deciphering Human Glioblastoma Invasion into Brain Organoids”

4:40 – 5:05: Rafael Davalos, Ph.D., Virginia Tech | “High Frequency Irreversible Electroporation for the Treatment of Malignant Glioma”

5:05 – 7:00: Poster Viewing and Dinner Reception, Hotel Roanoke

7:00: Dinner, Hotel Roanoke

Friday, May 27

8 a.m. – 12 p.m.: The Roanoke area is rich with recreational activities. To learn more, contact Carissa South, Fralin Biomedical Research Institute events coordinator, at Lunch will be provided.