Public Symposium: Stem Cells and the Aging Brain

April 17, 2017

One of the highlights of the year for the ISSCR is our annual meeting which brings together 3500-4000 scientists to present and review new scientific ideas and technologies, to brainstorm, and to develop new collaborations. This year, the ISSCR’s annual meeting takes place in Stockholm, Sweden, from 24-27 June. In association with the meeting, together with local hosts, we will be hosting a Public Symposium on 23 June to talk about “Stem Cells and the Ageing Brain.”

Any of us with a toddler can attest to the incredible learning capacity that we start our lives with—the development of gross motor, then fine motor skills, followed by language development. We both treasure (and rue) the ability of our children to cite back to us, not just a book by heart, but also our own words. We endure the endless “whys” (and “why nots”) as they explore, learn from and respond to the world around them. We think to ourselves, if only we could retain that learning ability!

Is it all downhill from there? Not necessarily. Experience continues to mold our brains throughout our life and a limited pool of stem cells in the brain means the potential exists to make new brain cells.  Neuroscientists believe that the brain can remain relatively healthy and full-functioning as it ages. Yet, not all of us will be so lucky, facing added challenges such as injury, cancer, Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s disease.

At the public symposium in Stockholm, stem cell scientists from Germany, Sweden and the U.S. will explore during a moderated panel discussion the role of stem cells in the brain during our lives from development and through adulthood. Panelists will discuss how scientists are investigating what happens to these cells as we age, how this knowledge is being used to guide new strategies to boost brain health and to develop therapies utilizing stem cells to treat diseases of the brain. We look forward to sharing a report from the event with you in July.

As a teaser, check out this video of panelist Magdalena Götz discussing her research on neuronal stem cells with the German Stem Cell Network:

And as a side note to those for whom the toddler story resonated, check out how becoming a parent can induce significant changes in the brain.

Event Details

23 June 2015
Aula Medica, Erling Persson Hall
Karolinska Institutet
Nobelsvagen 6, Solna

17:00     Interactive Reception
18:00     Panel Discussion

Free event for citizens of or visitors to Stockholm

Before the panel, join us for an informal interactive reception, featuring a motion-controlled 3D brain, a pop-up art exhibition and a giant floor game about stem cells.

Meet the panelists—

No registration is required. Please pass this information on, share our flyer with interested friends, colleagues and family or connect with us on twitter (@ISSCR and @eurostemcell) about this event #ageingbrain.

The event is hosted in collaboration with EuroStemCell, European Commission funded stem cell research consortia (PluriMes, HumEn, ThymiStem, NeuroStemCell Repair) and the Wellcome Trust-MRC Stem Cell Institute Cambridge.