New Frontiers Programme Committee

The membership of the New Frontiers Programme Committee is designed to represent an experienced cross-section of the field, including academic researchers, industry scientists, regulators and patient representatives. The committee is responsible for developing the programme of the New Frontiers Meeting and for guiding the ongoing discussion the meeting is designed to stimulate.

Martien Kas, The Netherlands, Chair
Martien Kas is professor of behavioural neuroscience at the University of Groningen, the Netherlands. He aims to develop a quantitative, transdiagnostic neurobiological approach to the understanding of neuropsychiatric disorders in order to accelerate the discovery and development of better treatments for patients with those disorders. He is President of the European College of Neuropsychopharmacology (ECNP), editorial board member of Mammalian Genome, and project coordinator of the PRISM project, a large EU Innovative Medicine Initiative (IMI) project that aims to unravel the biological reasons underlying social dysfunction, which is a common early symptom of schizophrenia, Alzheimer’s disease and major depressive disorder.

Bruce Cuthbert, USA
Bruce Cuthbert is a senior advisor of the Research Domain Criteria (RDoC) unit, a NIMH group which guides the translational research framework for psychopathology. He first joined NIMH in 1998 after seventeen years at the University of Florida, serving as chief of the adult psychopathology branch. He returned to NIMH in 2009 after four years at Minnesota to initiate the RDoC program while directing the division of adult translational research until 2014, and served as NIMH acting director from 2015 to 2016. Bruce has a Ph.D. in clinical psychology and psychophysiology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, emphasising translational research on emotions and anxiety disorders.

Odile van den Heuvel, The Netherlands
Odile van den Heuvel is psychiatrist and professor of neuropsychiatry at Amsterdam UMC/Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, the Netherlands. Her work is on the border of psychiatry, neurology and neuroscience, with neuroimaging studies in OCD, anxiety and neurological disorders (mostly Parkinson's disease) and multiple proof-of-concept and multi-center randomised controlled clinical trials (among others focused on the effects of repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation and psychotherapy). She is chair of the ENIGMA-OCD consortium.

Johan Luthman, Denmark
Johan Luthman is head of R&D, including medical affairs, at Lundbeck A/S. He has transformed Lundbeck’s R&D and its pipeline, with a shift towards specialist and rare indications in neurology and psychiatry as well as changed the company’s biological research areas. Before Lundbeck, Johan led neurology development Eisai. Johan has also worked at Merck Inc, leading early neuroscience development, as CEO at GeNeuro and was leading neurology, immunology and inflammation research at MerckSerono. Johan began his pharmaceutical career at Astra/AstraZeneca in discovery, and early development. Johan studied medicine/dentistry and obtained a Ph.D, later becoming associate professor at the Karolinska Institute.

Valentina Mantua, USA
Valentina Mantua is medical doctor and psychiatrist with a PhD in neurobiology. She has over ten years of working experience in regulatory science. Between 2012 and 2019 she served as Italian delegate to several committees and working parties of the European Medicines Agency (EMA) including the Scientific Advice Working Party, the Central Nervous System Working Party and the European (EU) Innovation Network. Valentina moved to the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 2019, where she is currently serving as a clinical team leader in the division of psychiatry. She holds a temporary professorship at the University of Modena and Reggio Emilia in Italy.

Hugh Marston, Germany
Hugh Marston is head of CNS Research at Boehringer Ingelheim, where he leads Boehringer research developing novel therapeutics aiming to bring increasing precision to psychiatry. Based on a systems and circuits understandings of human disorders the program includes Iclepertin and CT-155 in phase III. Trained in Cambridge he completed 10 years in academe before joining industry. At Organon, then SP and Merck, Asenapine and Sugammadex were brought to market. Prior to joining Boehringer, he led Translational Neuroscience at Lilly. This and his leadership of the PRISM 1&2 initiatives reflects long-standing interest in reverse translation seeking transdiagnostic, quantitative biological phenotypes in CNS disorders.

Brenda Penninx, The Netherlands
Brenda Penninx, PhD, is professor at the department of psychiatry of Amsterdam UMC, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam. Since 2004 she leads the multi-site, longitudinal Netherlands Study of Depression and Anxiety (NESDA), and several other (national and EU-funded) mental health cohort and intervention studies. Her research pays large attention to disease heterogeneity, for instance immunometabolic depression. Penninx leads a research group of 30 researchers. She currently serves as vice-president of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Sciences.

Emma Robinson, United Kingdom
Emma Robinson completed her BSc (Hons) and PhD in at the University of Bristol. She was awarded an RCUK Academic Fellowship in 2006 and worked at the University of Cambridge before returning to Bristol to establish her independent research group. Now based in Bristol’s School of physiology, pharmacology and neuroscience, Emma’s research investigates the mechanisms which regulate normal and pathological emotional behaviour and their interactions with antidepressants. Her work is particularly interested in developing new behavioural approaches to explore the relationship between psychological and experience-dependent mechanisms which contribute to the development and treatment of mood disorders.

Maximilian Schuier, USA
Maximilian Schuier is a German physician with clinical, scientific, and pharmaceutical industry experience being in medical affairs leadership roles on the German, EMEA and global level for more than 10 years. Areas of focus and experience spectrum range from Infectious diseases/internal medicine and immunology to the focus area of CNS in which he has launched assets for schizophrenia, major depressive disorder and multiple sclerosis for the last 9 years. In his current role he acts as a senior global medical affairs leader neuropsychiatry for Johnson & Johnson Innovative Medicine, and is based in Raritan, New Jersey, USA.