Friday 29 July 2022 12:20pm
Professor John Reynolds delivered the public lecture at the Brain Health Research Centre Hui-ā-Tau annual conference 2022.
The Brain Health Research Centre Hui-ā-Tau annual conference took place from 6–7 July in Ōtepoti Dunedin with over 60 BHRC members converging to share, connect and discuss exciting research updates under the theme of Te Haerenga O Te Tangata, Lifespan.
The conference was opened with a moving karakia and mihi on Wednesday evening by Peter Williamson, before keynote speaker Professor John Reynolds delivered the annual BHRC public lecture “Parkinson’s Disease – the Long Road to Better Treatments”.
Professor Reynolds and his team have been working on finding new ways to deliver drug treatments to the brain, the public lecture was well attended and BHRC members were treated to a more in depth keynote lecture from John the following day.
One method Professor Reynolds team are investigating is using biological packages to sequester the drug until needed, before being broken open with low levels of ultrasound to deliver the drug where and when it’s needed. This method offers hope to neurodegenerative diseases like Parkinson’s, or disorders like epilepsy that are notoriously difficult to treat, as well as being much less invasive than some other methods of treatment.
During the conference, members heard short presentations from a range of researchers at different stages in their career, as well as an update on the BHRC’s new outreach programme, Positively Wired! The kaipūtaiao who presented discussed mahi investigating the brain throughout the lifespan from childhood/pre-natal and adulthood through to ageing.
Thanks to sponsorship from Decode Science, BHRC was able to award prizes to the top PhD/postdoctoral speakers (Celine Camon, Shruthi Sateesh, Ashleigh Barrett Young) and master's/honours speaker (Joseph Balfe).
We also hosted the first BHRC graphical abstract competition, where entrants had to represent their research graphically on posters that were displayed around the venue. Conference attendees all voted for the top poster with stickers, with the first prize (Dr Ailsa McGregor) being sponsored by Lab Supply.
A new addition for this year's conference was the First Paper Hall of Fame, where we celebrated the achievements of BHRC members who had their first lead author paper published in the last 12 months, or had their name in print on a published paper for the first time. We also awarded a prize, kindly sponsored by Thermofisher, to the first paper with the most impact, which went to Ashleigh Barrett-Young.
An acknowledgement was given to outgoing president of the Early Career Researchers ENG Committee and PhD candidate Oluwatobi Eboda. We wish Oluwatobi all the best in writing up his PhD thesis. We also welcome incoming ENG President Courteney Westlake to the role.
Joseph Balfe and Chris Wicky (Decode Science). Joseph was the winner of the master's/honours category sponsored by Decode Science.
Celine Camon and Chris Wicky (Decode Science). Celine was the winner of the PhD/postdoctoral category sponsored by Decode Science.
Shruthi Sateesh and Chris Wicky (Decode Science). Shruthi was runner up of the PhD/postdoctoral category sponsored by Decode Science.
Ashleigh Barrett-Young and Chris Wicky (Decode Science). Ashleigh was second runner up of the PhD/postdoctoral category sponsored by Decode Science.
Dr Ailsa McGregor and BHRC Director Associate Professor Stephanie Hughes. Ailsa was the winner of the anonymous Graphical Abstract competition sponsored by Lab Supply.
ENG outgoing president Oluwatobi Eboda and BHRC Director Associate Professor Stephanie Hughes.
Jason Lee (Thermofisher Scientific).