July 2018

ECNP e-news
Message from the president
Wednesday 18 July 2018

Celso Arango

The ECNP is in good health

We are just three months away from our yearly scientific meeting – an event that cannot be missed! The 31st ECNP Congress will be held on 6-9 October in Barcelona, so be sure to mark your calendars. 

This year, the Congress will kick off a ”love your brain” campaign, focusing on many different activities and behaviours that are good for brain health. And yes, we are very proud to announce that the ECNP is leading by example and is in very good health!

The meeting in Barcelona will once again play host to around 5,000 delegates from all over the world, who will have the opportunity to attend a wide variety of activities that are sure to satisfy anyone interested in the brain. The meeting’s mission is to ensure that advances in the understanding of brain function and human behaviour are translated into better treatments and enhanced public health.

Brain-storming sessions in think-tank format for early risers, career development sessions, six plenary lectures, and five parallel sessions (regular symposia, a new findings symposium, alternative sessions, a regulatory spotlight session, and educational update sessions) are some of the offerings from which to choose. Another novelty this year is ‘the bubble’ for more experimental, informal and highly interactive sessions. We will continue with regulatory sessions and a unique opportunity to discuss matters relevant to our field with industry, regulators, patient and family associations, clinicians and researchers from very different and complementary backgrounds. Once again we will hold our extremely successful top paper sessions in which experts will discuss their best 10 papers published in the last 12 months. Industry sessions will incorporate satellite symposia, expert science exchange sessions and the product theatre sessions (new this year in which companies will present specific services, applications or products).

More than 1,000 abstracts have been selected, contrary to many other meetings, in a very competitive way. Of those, 240 will be presented as e-posters. Check the programme on our website to see what an excellent job the Scientific Program Committee headed by Astrid Linthorst has done once again!

We have a very strong office staff consisting of excellent professionals who make sure that everything runs smoothly all year long and not only during our annual congress. Believe it or not, we have 50-60 activities or more every year (Workshops, Schools, Seminars, Network meetings, TNMs, the Brain Day, the New Frontiers Meeting, research internships, EU-funded projects in which the ECNP is a partner, executive committee meetings, EBC meetings, and so on).

We also have an external review board (Hans-Jürgen Möller, chair, Carlo Altamura, Kim O. Do, and Naomi Fineberg) that oversees the quality assurance of the ECNP’s governance and its activities.

We have more members than ever and our economic situation is sound. And we need that health now more than ever, as we are faced with a tremendous task. We need to lead our field as it confronts the difficult situation of reduced interest in treatment developments for brain disorders – one of the largest unmet needs in modern medicine. We should all feel very proud that the ECNP healthy enough to take on that endeavour.

And the last innovation this year is that we are promoting even healthier life styles among our members and congress delegates by organising a 5km race in Barcelona called “Run with the President”. Everyone is welcome: runners, walkers, and families. Come join in the (healthy) fun. See you in Barcelona!

Celso Arango
Celso Arango
ECNP President

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