Program Information

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Hover over the name of each speaker to read a short bio

Monday, 1 February

Welcome and Overview

"New frontiers in neuro-biomedical stem cell research"
Oliver Brüstle, MD, University of Bonn and LIFE & BRAIN GmbH, Germany

Session 1: 3D Organoids

"Recapitulating Alzheimer's disease pathology in a 3D human neural cell culture model"
Doo Yeon Kim, PhD, Massachusetts General Hospital/ Harvard Medical School, USA

"Dissecting cerebral organoids and fetal neocortex using single-cell RNA-Seq"
Gray Camp, PhDMax Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology, Germany

"High-content imaging of stem cell-derived neurons allows the identification of a new neuronal lineage specifier, glypican 4"
Stefan Weiss, Helmholtz Center Munich, Germany

"Modeling human brain development and disease In 3D culture"
Juergen A. Knoblich, PhD, IMBA-Institute of Molecular Biotechnology, Austria
15:30  Break

Session 1: 3D Organoids

"Yin yang 1 regulates cerebral cortex development in a developmental stage-specific manner "
Luis Zurkirchen, University of Zurich, Switzerland

"Generation of complex tissue structure In stem cell culture "
Mototsugu Eiraku, PhD, Center for Developmental Biology, RIKEN, Japan

"Modeling periventricular heterotopia in human cerebral organoids with mutations in FAT4 and DCHS1 "
Silvia Cappello, PhD, Max Planck Institute of Psychiatry, Germany

  • Break-out Sessions

    Enjoy an engaging moderated discussion that includes invited speakers and meeting participants. Groups will be formed around focused topics to explore the current advances, opportunities and challenges.

    Based on preferences indicated during registration the following sessions will be held. You may attend a different session than the one you indicated during registration process:

    • 3D cultures & organoids
      Supported by the German Stem Cell Network
    • Direct cell fate conversion and endogenous regeneration
    • Modeling neurodegeneration
    • Clinical translation 
Tuesday, 2 February

Session 2: Modeling Disorders

"Insights into Alzheimer's disease pathogenesis from human stem cell systems" 
Frederick J. Livesey, PhD,
Gurdon Institute, United Kingdom

"In vitro modeling of neuroinglammation using neural stem cells derived from CD34 cells from patients with undiagnosed rare diseases" 
Tongguang Wang, MD, PhD,
 National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, USA

"Modeling neurological diseases using patient iPSCs" 
Guo-Li Ming, MD, PhD,
Johns Hopkins University, USA
10:15  Break

Session 2: Modeling Disorders

MONIKA ERHART-BORNSTEIN MEMORIAL LECTURE: "Stem cell heterogeneity in homeostasis and disease" 
Ana Martin-Villalba MD, PhD,
DKFZ German Cancer Research Center, Germany

"Patient-derived IPSC three-dimensional optic cups to test disease mechanisms and RNA therapy for inherited blindness" 
David Parfitt,
UCL Institute of Ophthalmology, United Kingdom

"Probing the secrets of Alzheimer's disease with pluripotent stem cell technology" 
Lawrence S.B. Goldstein, PhD
University of California - San Diego, USA
Lunch Served

Poster Session 1


Session 3: Modeling Regeneration

"Transcriptome analysis identifies the calcium channel subunit alpha2 delta2 as a key regulator of axon regeneration" 
Frank Bradke, PhD
, German Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases (DZNE), Germany

"Cellular and molecular changes in adult neural stem cells allowing successful regeneration in the adult zebrafish brain" 
Jovica Ninkovic, PhD
, Helmholtz Zentrum München, Germany

"Cellular plasticity in the intact and injured central nervous system" 
Jonas Frisén, MD, PhD,
Karolinska Institute, Sweden

Break-Out Sessions

19:00 Ballhaus Watzke Social Event (optional; registration required)

Company Presentations

8:00- 8:30 Tuesday, 2 February

"Physiologically Relevant Neural Models for Discovery and Screening:  Stem Cell Derived Systems from Thermo Fisher Scientific
David Kuninger, Thermo Fisher Scientific 

13:45- 14:15 Tuesday, 2 February 

"High Thoughput Single Cell Sorting for Genomics
Uwe Speck BD Biosciences 
Wednesday, 3 February

Session 3: Modeling Regeneration

"Regenerating CNS myelin-from mechanisms to medicines" 
Robin Franklin, PhD,
Wellcome Trust-MRC Cambridge Stem Cell Institute, University of Cambridge, United Kingdom

"Human glial chimeric mouse models of neurological disease" 
Steven A. Goldman, MD, PhD,
University of Copenhagen, Denmark

"Towards a stem cell based therapy for Parkinson's Disease" 
Malin Parmar, PhD,
Lund University, Sweden
10:30  Break

Summary from Break-Out Discussion Groups

Lunch Served

Poster Session 2


Session 4: Road to the Clinic

"Human pluripotent-derived neurons for addressing disorders of the gut, muscle, and brain"
Lorenz Studer, MD,
Sloan-Kettering Institute for Cancer Research, USA

"Implications of disrupted autophagy on cholesterol trafficking, neuronal survival and strategies for drug development in NPC1"
Paulina Ordonez, MD,
University of California-San Diego, USA

"Stem cells in the adult human retinal pigment epithelium and their therapeutic potential"
Sally Temple, PhD,
Neural Stem Cell Institute, USA

Session 4: Road to the Clinic

"OPCS derived from Huntington Disease-derived hESCs exhibit a SOX10 and MYRF disruption associated suppression of oligodendrocyte development and myelinogenesis"
Andrea Lampp
University of Copenhagen, Denmark

"Stemming vision loss using human embryonic stem cells"
Peter Coffey, BSc, DPhil,
University College London Institute of Ophthalmology, United Kingdom
Closing Overview
Elly Tanaka, Center for Regenerative Therapies Technische Universitaet Dresden, Germany
Dr. Guo-li Ming is currently a Professor of Neurology and Neuroscience. The research of her laboratory centers on understanding the molecular mechanisms underlying neuronal development during both embryonic stages and in the adult brain using mouse model systems, and understanding of functions and mechanisms of risk genes for mental disorder in neuronal development using patient derived iPSCs.
Jonas Frisén received his MD (1991) and PhD (1993) degrees from the Karolinska Institute, Stockholm, Sweden. He was a postdoctoral fellow in Dr. Mariano Barbacid’s laboratory in Princeton, USA, 1995-7. He is the Tobias Foundation Professor of Stem Cell Research at the Karolinska Institute since 2001. A main interest of Jonas Frisén’s research group is cellular plasticity in the central nervous system, in both the healthy and pathological situation. Studies in experimental animals have delineated how neural stem cells, progenitor cells and differentiated cells collaborate to form scar tissue and contribute to repair mechanisms after brain and spinal cord injuries. Efforts to modulate these processes are assessed for the potential to improve functional recovery after nervous system injury.
Jürgen Knoblich is a scientist at the Institute of Molecular Biotechnology of the Austrian Academy of Sciences in Vienna, Austria. His research group studies neural stem cells and brain development in fruit flies and in mammals. Jürgen Knoblich’s group has developed a three dimensional culture method to recapitulate the early development of a human brain in culture starting from ES or iPS cells and uses this method to analyze human brain diseases.
Sally Temple, PhD, is the Co-Founder and Scientific Director of the Neural Stem Cell Institute located in Rensselaer, NY, USA, and is president-elect of ISSCR. Dr. Temple’s research group is focused on the biology of neural and retinal stem cells, and using this knowledge in translational studies to develop therapies for central nervous system disorders.
Malin Parmar is an Associate Professor, Developmental and Regenerative Neurobiology, Lund University. Her group works with translational stem cell biology with the focus on 1) understanding cell fate specification in the developing brain and in human neural progenitor cells using cell-based models of neuronal differentiation, 2) learning how to direct and efficiently drive controlled differentiation of human stem cells into subtype-specific neurons, 3) developing technologies for direct conversion of human fibroblasts into functional and subtype-specific neurons in vitro, and the conversion of endogenous glia into neurons in vivo.
Dr Eiraku's research interests are mainly in molecular and cellular dynamics underlying organogenesis, and to develop new technologies for in vitro recapitulation, that is, three-dimensional functional organ formation from stem cells. These researches aim to make contributions to the field of developmental biology, stem cell biology and regenerative medicine.
Dr. Doo Yeon Kim is an Assistant professor of Neurology at Massachusetts General Hospital/ Harvard Medical School, MA, United States. Dr. Kim has been studying physiological and pathological roles of Alzheimer’s secretases, BACE1 and Presenilin/γ-secretase over 14 years. Dr. Kim’s laboratory recently developed a novel three-dimensional human neural cell culture model of Alzheimer’s disease, which recapitulated two major pathological markers of Alzheimer’s disease, extracellular β-amyloid aggregates and tau tangles (Choi et al., Nature, 2014).
Professor Pete Coffey, DPhil, is Head of Ocular Biology and Therapeutics at UCLs Institute of Ophthalmology and the Co-Executive Director of Translation at UC Santa Barbara’s Center for Stem Cell Biology and Engineering. He is the principal author and co-author of two landmark papers demonstrating the use of human cells to halt visual deterioration in models of age-related macular degeneration. His achievements include the launch of the London Project to Cure Blindness, which aims to develop a stem cell therapy for the majority of all types of age-related macular degeneration, seminal work on retinal transplantation (as described by Debrossy & Dunnett, Nature Neuroscience 2001). Prof. Coffey has received many honors and awards, including the prestigious Estelle Doheny Living Tribute Award in 2009, Retinitis Pigmentosa International's Vision Award in 2009, the CIRM Leadership Award in 2010, and the New York Stem Cell Foundation Roberston Prize in 2011.
Rick Livesey is a senior group leader at the Wellcome Trust/Cancer Research UK Gurdon Institute, University of Cambridge. His lab focusses on studying human cerebral cortex development, evolution and disease, primarily using stem cell systems. Prior to joining the Gurdon Institute, Rick was a postdoctoral fellow with Connie Cepko at the HHMI/Department of Genetics, Harvard Medical School. A graduate of the Cambridge MD/PhD programme, he carried out his PhD at the MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology.
Dr. Steven A. Goldman is Professor of Neuroscience and Neurology at the University of Copenhagen in Denmark, and Co-Director of its Center for Basic and Translational Neuroscience. He holds a concurrent appointment as URMC Distinguished Professor of Neuroscience at the University of Rochester, and is Co-Director of its Center for Translational Neuromedicine. Goldman is interested in cell genesis and regeneration in the adult brain, particularly in the use of neural stem and progenitor cells in both treating and modeling demyelinating and neurodegenerative diseases. He also has a strong interest in the conversion of progenitor cells into cancers, and is board-certified in neuro-oncology.
Frank Bradke is full professor at the University of Bonn and Senior Research Groupleader for Axonal Growth and Regeneration at the German Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases (DZNE) in Bonn. The Bradke laboratory seeks to understand how axonal growth is regulated in both injured and uninjured neurons. They use cell biological, videomicroscopy, molecular and biochemical approaches and also study spinal cord injury.
Robin Franklin is Head of Translational Science and Professor of Stem Cell Medicine at the Wellcome Trust-MRC Cambridge Stem Cell Institute at the University of Cambridge. He obtained his undergraduate degrees in Physiology and Veterinary Medicine and his PhD in Neuroscience at the University of Cambridge. His main research questions are how stem cells in the adult brain respond to injury, how do they contribute to regeneration, and how are they are affected by ageing?
Dr. Goldstein is Distinguished Professor in the Departments of Cellular and Molecular Medicine and Neurosciences at the University of California, San Diego (UCSD), as well as Director of the UC San Diego Stem Cell Program, Scientific Director of the Sanford Consortium for Regenerative Medicine, and Director of the Sanford Stem Cell Clinical Center. His research is focused on understanding the molecular mechanisms of intracellular transport in neurons and how transport failures may lead to neurodegenerative diseases. Current projects use human stem cells to understand and treat AD, Niemann-Pick Type C, and ALS.
Prof. Ana Martin-Villalba, MD, PhD, studied medicine in Murcia, Spain and Leeds, UK. She received her PhD from the University of Heidelberg in 1998 for investigating the role of death ligands in the ischemic brain. Thereafter she moved as project leader to Peter Krammer's department at the DKFZ where she became a junior group leader in 2006 and was appointed W3 professor in 2011. She was awarded the Paul Ehrlich and Ludwig Darmstaedter Prize and the Heinz Maier-Leibnitz Prize and the Walther and Christine Richtzenhain Prize. Her research centers in stem cells in homeostasis and disease including neurodegeneration and cancer.