16th Annual Center for Biomedical Neurosciences (CBN)
Spring Scientific Retreat

Friday, May 4th, 2018 - 8:30AM-4PM

North Campus GCCRI Commons and Auditorium


CBN RetreatThe Center for Biomedical Neurosciences (CBN) will hold it's fourteenth annual retreat on Friday, May 4th, 2018. Professor of Pharmacology and CBN Director, Dr. David Morilak (pictured below, right), is again this year's event host and coordinator. Poster presentations will provide an opportunity for CBN members to discuss their research with colleagues. Almost (60) posters are expected to be presented at this year's event. Dr. David MorilakThe event will begin with poster presentations and judging (a lite breakfast will be available), followed by a round of three guest speaker presentations, a second round of poster presentations and judging, a boxed lunch break, the Invited Speaker address and the retreat will conclude with the poster presentation awards.


Dr. Rene Hen, PhD.This year's Invited Speaker will be Rene Hen, Ph.D. (pictured left), Professor in the Departments of Psychiatry and Neuroscience, Pharmacology Director, Division of Integrative Neuroscience, New York State Psychiatric Institute, Research Foundation for Mental Hygiene. The title of his presentation is: 'Ventral hippocampus and mood'.

Rene Hen's research is focused on the contribution of serotonin (5-HT) receptors to pathological states such as depression and anxiety. Pharmacological studies and molecular cloning have identified several subtypes of receptors with distinct properties, signaling systems, and tissue distributions. However, the study of the function of individual serotonin receptor subtypes has been hampered by the lack of specific drugs. In addition, a number of the serotonergic drugs that are active in the treatment of neuropsychiatric disorders influence the whole serotonergic system. For example, antidepressants such as fluoxetine are 5-HT uptake blockers and potentiate the action of 5-HT at multiple post-synaptic sites.

CBN Retreat

Recently his lab has also been investigating the function of the ventral hippocampus and the contribution of hippocampal neurogenesis to mood and cognition. Specifically, they have shown that antidepressants stimulate the division of neuronal progenitor cells in the dentate gyrus, which in turn results in an increase in the number of immature neurons in the adult hippocampus. Furthermore, using various ablation strategies they have shown that hippocampal neurogenesis is required for some of the behavioral effects of antidepressants. Novel antidepressant therapies aimed at targeting directly hippocampal stem cells are currently under investigation.

Prior to the Invited Speaker, the CBN Retreat hosts three Platform Speakers, who this year will be: Jeffery Boychuck, PhD Assistant Professor/Research, Cell & Integrative Physiology : 'Debate Continued: Is the Motor Cortex A "Smart" Structure?"', Flavia Carreno, Ph.D., Department of Pharmacology, with her presentation: 'Pharmacological targeting of the hippocampus as a novel approach to treat depression.' and the final speaker will be Karl Rodriguez, PhD, Assistant Professor, Barshop Institute, discussing 'The influence of HSP25 overexpression on lifespan and neurodegenerative disease.'.

CBN Retreat


We Hope To See You There!!!