Inaugural UCL Queen Square Annual Motor Neuron Disease Symposium

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Clinical Neurosciences Building

Lecture Theatre

33 Queen Square



United Kingdom

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INAUGURAL UCL Queen Square Annual Motor Neuron Disease Symposium:

Launch of the UCL Queen Square Motor Neuron Disease Centre

Friday 6th September 2019

Lecture Theatre, 33 Queen Square, Clinical Neurosciences Building, London WC1N 3BG

09:00 – 09:30: Registration and Coffee

09:30 – 09:35: Welcome, Professor Michael Hanna, Director, UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology

09:35 – 09:40: Welcome, Dr Christopher Turner, Clinical Director, National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery


Chair: Professor Kevin Talbot, University of Oxford


09:40 – 10:00: Dr Andrea Malaspina, Consultant Neurologist (QMUL). Defining a biological signature of ALS for biomarkers and therapeutics development.

The microbiome

10:00 – 10:20: Dr Nikhil Sharma, Consultant Neurologist. The microbiome-microglia axis in MND (BIOMAX-ALS).

New clinical trials and therapeutic prospects

Chair: Professor Chris Shaw, King’s College London

10:20 – 10:40: Dr Katie Sidle, Consultant Neurologist. Unfolding the pathway from clinic to lab; how coming to clinic can inspire the basic scientist.

10:40 – 11:00: Professor Vincenzo Libri, Consultant Clinical Pharmacologist; Director of the Leonard Wolfson Experimental Neurology Centre and Director of the NIHR UCLH Clinical Research Facility (CRF). The Leonard Wolfson Experimental Neurology Centre at Queen Square: First-in-Human clinical trials and Antisense Oligonucleotide therapies in ALS and other neurodegenerative diseases.

11:00 – 11:30: Coffee

Chair: Professor Linda Greensmith, UCL

11:30 – 11:50: Dr Richard Orrell, Associate Professor and Consultant Neurologist. Clinical trials in ALS.

11:50 – 12:10: Dr Rickie Patani, MRC Senior Clinical Fellow, Honorary Consultant Neurologist, ALS expert and stem cell scientist. Using human induced pluripotent stem cells to model key aspects of ALS.

12:10 – 12:30: Dr Barney Bryson, NIHR BRC UCL Excellence Fellow and MND Association Lady Edith Wolfson Senior Non-Clinical Fellow. Combining optogenetics and stem cells to restore lost muscle function in ALS.

12:30 – 13:30: Lunch

Chair: Professor John Hardy, UCL

13:30 – 14:25: Plenary Lecture : Professor J Paul Taylor, Howard Hughes Medical Institute and the Edward Barry Endowed Chair in Cell and Molecular Biology St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, Memphis, USA. 'Bridging biophysics and neurology: aberrant phase transitions and neurodegenerative disease'


Frontotemporal dementia and other disorders

14:25 – 14:55: Dr Jonathan Rohrer, MRC Clinician Scientist, Honorary Consultant Neurologist. Frontotemporal dementia: insights into a complex disorder.

14:55 – 15:20: Tea

Chair: Dr Majid Hafezparast, University of Sussex

15:20 – 15:40: Dr Pietro Fratta, MRC Senior Clinical Fellow, Honorary Consultant Neurologist, ALS/Kennedy’s disease expert and RNA biologist. RNA disruption in ALS.

New insights from model systems

15:40 – 16:00: Professor Elizabeth Fisher, Professor of Neurogenetics. Asking the right questions of the right models: ALS mouse models.

16:00 – 16:20: Professor Giampietro Schiavo, Professor of Cellular Neuroscience. On signalling, axonal transport and ALS.

16:20 – 16:30: Short Break

Chair: Professor Giampietro Schiavo, UCL

16:30 – 16:50: Dr Nicol Birsa, Postdoctoral Research Associate. FUS mechanisms of neurodegeneration.

16:50 – 17:10 Professor Adrian Isaacs, Professor of Neurodegenerative Disease. C9orf72 ALS/FTD: molecular mechanisms.

17:10 – 17:30: Professor Jernej Ule, Professor of Molecular Neurosciences. Understanding the mechanisms that keep protein-RNA networks in balance, or disrupt the balance in ALS.

17:30 – 17:35: Close, Professor Linda Greensmith, Scientific Director, UCL Queen Square Motor Neuron Disease Centre.

17:35 – 18:45: Wine Reception

UCL Queen Square Annual Symposium on Motor Neuron Disease has been approved by the Federation of the Royal College of Physicians of the United Kingdom for 6 category 1 CPD credits.

This meeting has been generously supported by:

Motor Neurone Disease Association (MNDA); Biogen (sponsored the component of the sympoisum not contributing to CPD credits ie. plenary lecture); Wave Life Sciences Ltd; Orphazyme A/S; Eli Lilly and Company Ltd; Ethypharm; Mitsubishi Tanabe Pharma Europoe Ltd; UK Dementia Research Institute; Alzheimber's Research UK UCL Network Centre; Journal of Cell Science; MNDA North London Branch.

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Clinical Neurosciences Building

Lecture Theatre

33 Queen Square



United Kingdom

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