We had a great 2nd Annual Meeting of Amsterdam Neuroscience (see 2nd Annual Meeting). A 650+ audience attended the 2017 Annual Meeting whereas an additional 200+ audience attended the satellite TN2 symposia (the day before the main meeting).
And we did go our way in doing some trendwatching and we discussed the ‘future of Neuroscience’ from different points of perspective. We were put straight by four Amsterdam Neuroscience team leaders (Ruud Toonen, Eric Reits, Jonathan Coutinho and Tinca Polderman) during the research reports. Then the ‘real’ heroes - of course - were the PhD students and postdocs that featured during the Pecha Kucha session and all those that were presenting their work at the poster market.
Swammerdam lecturer Matteo Carandini impressed with his work on recordings of the visual cortex and hippocampus in living mice while the animal was navigating in virtual reality on a rotating balloon. But then towards the end of the program the Neurotech session grabbed our full attention (and emotions) due to the excellent presentations by Pieter Roelfsema and Rob de Bie and the remarkeble demonstration by Job Hof and the very touching storytelling by Jens Naumann. Job Hof is a patient with Essential Tremor, and he was very generous in willing to show onstage the effect of turning ‘off’ his Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS) device that was placed last summer at the AMC by Rick Schuurman and Rob de Bie. Next Jens Naumann told us his mind grabbing story of how he became blinded at the age of 20, then found (some) relief by having had the first generation of visual cortex protheses implanted around the year 2000, which after 4 years stopped working. Pieter Roelfsema subsequently explained to the audience his new NeuroTech-NL endeavour which amongst others is aiming for the next generation of electrode probes aimed at both brain reading and writing.
Thereafter the party was ‘on’ and it was selfie time. Best quotes of the day: “This was the reason why I always wanted to study Neurosciences (Diederik van de Beek)” and “See you next year, same time, same place (Arjen Brussaard)”.
For the full photo impression, see here. Thanks to the many volunteers that took such good care of all of us and thanks to Anita Osinga and her colleagues for event management & coordination.
Arjen Brussaard – director
Diederik van de Beek – co-director
Photos by Rien Dekker