As we approach the 47th Annual Meeting, I wanted to take this opportunity to highlight some aspects of the Scientific Program. In my last message, I highlighted the Presidential Symposium “Child Neurology at the Forefront of Treatable Rare Diseases.” This topic has become increasingly timely as new therapies are on the verge of approval and others are just around the corner. Child Neurology is truly leading the way as we enter a new era of neurological therapeutics. In this context, I will have the privilege of representing the Child Neurology Society at the upcoming “Rare Access to Critical Therapies” Stakeholder Summit on Friday, October 5th. This summit is being convened jointly by Global Genes and the Child Neurology Foundation. Information is available at https://globalgenes.org/act/. As we continue to make progress, assuring access and affordability for these game-changing therapies will have to be a priority for child neurologists in partnership with our patients.
The Neurobiology of Disease in Children (NDC) Symposium this year will focus on Tourette Syndrome and related disorders. In the 10 years since Tourette Syndrome was previously the topic of the NDC symposium there have been substantial advances in understanding and therapeutic approaches to this disorder. We have other exciting symposia planned, including one focused on Spinal Muscular Atrophy, an area in which we have seen some of the most exciting and impactful advances in the past couple few years, and another on Precision Medicine in Epilepsy, a topic that is also timely in the face of multiple recent advances. On Thursday, the final day of the meeting, there will be a morning symposium on Critical Care Neurology, and in the afternoon the Child Neurology Foundation Symposium will focus on Transitions to Adulthood for children with neurologic disorders. In addition to the large symposia, we have a diverse program of six breakfast seminars on tap. Submissions for Poster and Platform Presentations were exceptionally competitive this year, and I am excited to see and hear those presentations. Program Chair, Erika Augustine has added two new program elements designed to highlight outstanding work presented by CNS Junior Members: three Guided Poster Tours, featuring five posters each, and a “Best of Show” moderated poster session on Wednesday noon showcasing five of the top-ranked posters picked out by members of the Scientific Program Planning Committee.
Other Junior Member programming launched in the last few years and continuing this year, bigger and better than ever, include: 1) the 2018 Minority Research Scholars Program, a joint activity of the Child Neurologist Career Development Program (CNCDP), the CNS, and the NDC; 2) the 3rd Annual John M. “Jack” Pellock Resident Seminar on Epilepsy; 3) the NDC Young Investigators Program; and 4) Wednesday afternoon workshops and seminars for residents and medical students focused on career development, scientific presentation and publishing.
I look forward to seeing you in Chicago!