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We are pleased to announce our keynote speakersfor MNS2021, June 2021 in Dubrovnik, Croatia!

Tracy Bale, Baltimore, MD, USA - IBRO Presidential Lecture

Tracy BaleTracy L. Bale is a Professor of Pharmacology and Director of the Center for Epigenetic Research in Child Health and Brain Development in the School of Medicine at the University of Maryland, Baltimore. She completed her Ph.D. at the University of Washington in the Department of Pharmacology, and her postdoctoral work at the Salk Institute with Dr. Wylie Vale. Dr. Bale was Professor of Neuroscience at the University of Pennsylvania for 15 years prior to her move to UMB. Her research focuses on understanding the role of stress dysregulation in neurodevelopmental and neuropsychiatric diseases, and the sex differences that underlie disease vulnerability using mice as the model organism. She is interested in developing models of parental stress and the germ cell involvement in transgenerational epigenetic programming of neurodevelopment. She serves on many internal and external advisory committees, panels, and boards and served as Chair of the NNRS CSR study section and was a Reviewing Editor at the Journal of Neuroscience for the last 6 years. She has been the recipient of several awards for her research in this area including the career development award for early career achievement and promise by the Society for Neuroscience, the Richard E. Weitzman Memorial award as exceptionally promising young investigator award by the Endocrine Society, the Medtronic Award from the Society for Women’s Health Research for outstanding research that has led to the improvement of women’s health, and recently the Daniel H. Efron award from the American College of Neuropsychopharmacology. She was recently elected President of the International Brain Research Organization (IBRO).

Gina Turrigiano, Waltham, MA, USA - SfN Presidential Lecture

Gina TurrigianoGina Turrigiano is a professor in the Dept of Biology, the Volen Center for Complex Systems, and the Center for Behavioral Genomics at Brandeis University. She is a neuroscientist recognized for her pioneering work on homeostatic plasticity mechanisms that help to stabilize the function of neural circuits. She grew up in Northern California, received her BA from Reed College in 1984, and her PhD from University of California San Diego in 1990. She then trained as a postdoc with Eve Marder at Brandeis University before joining the faculty in 1994. She has received numerous awards for her research including a MacArthur foundation fellowship, McKnight Foundation Technological Innovation and Neurobiology of Disease awards, an NIH director's pioneer award, the HFSP Nakasone Award, and election to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Her scientific interests include mechanisms of synaptic and intrinsic plasticity and the experience-dependent refinement of neocortical microcircuitry.
She studies the experience-dependent development of neocortex, with a focus on the cellular plasticity mechanisms that allow the refinement of neocortical microcircuitry during critical periods of development. In particular her work has uncovered a family of homeostatic plasticity mechanisms that work together to maintain the integrity of neural circuits during periods of intense synaptic rearrangments, such as occur during development and learning. Her lab employs a variety of approaches to tackle these problems, including electrophysiology, imaging, and optogenetics, using both in vitro and in vivo preparations of the rodent visual cortex.
She is the President- Elect of the American Society for Neuroscience (SfN).

Jean-Antoine Girault, Paris, FR - FENS Presidential Lecture

Jean-Antoine GiraultJean-Antoine Girault, MD, PhD, holds an Inserm research director position. He is currently head of the Institut du Fer à Moulin, an Inserm-UPMC center of research, with about ten teams working on the development and plasticity of the nervous system. His research is mainly on the signalling mechanisms involved in the plasticity of the nervous system, in normal and pathological conditions. The fields of application concern drug addiction and Parkinson disease, as well as axoglial interactions in myelinated fibers. The approaches used include molecular and cellular biology, functional neuroanatomy, and behavioural studies, etc. Member of various professional committees and the French and American societies for Neurosciences, Jean-Antoine Girault has actively participated in the creation of the Neuropôle de recherche francilien (NeRF). Very involved in teaching and training of young researchers and doctors, he has been the director of the Paris School of Neuroscience (ENP) between 2007 and 2009.
He is the President- Elect of the European Society for Neuroscience (FENS).

Ira Milosevic, Göttingen, DE - Croatian Society for Neuroscience invited Speaker

Ira MilosevicIra Milosevic graduated from the University of Zagreb (Zagreb, Croatia) in 2001, and did her PhD with Erwin Neher and Reinhard Jahn at Max the Planck Institute (Göttingen, Germany) on the cell biology of chromaffin cells1 . Subsequently, she worked on the role of endophilins in endocytosis2 and also contributed to ER-plasma membrane t ethering principles3 as a postdoc with Pietro DeCamilli at Yale University (New Haven CT, USA). In 2013, Ira was awarded the Emmy Noether Young Investigator Award from the German Research Council to establish an independent group at the ENI in Göttingen that focuses on the molecular underpinnings of synaptic function. Her group works on fundamental aspects of synaptic vesicle recycling related to neurological and neurodegenerative diseases using genomic, imaging and cell biological approaches. She is the invited as Speaker Croatian Society for Neuroscience invited Speaker.

Giacomo Rizzolatti, Parma, IT - MNS Emeritus Member Lecture

Giacomo RizzolattiGiacomo Rizzolatti is Professor of Human Physiology at the Universitàdeglistudi di Parma, where he is the Director of the Department of Neurosciences. Formerly President of the European Brain Behavior Society and the Italian Society for Neuroscience, as well as member of the European Medical Research Council, Professor Rizzolatti has, for several years, directed the European Training Program in Brain and Behaviour Research (ETP) sponsored by the European Science Foundation. He is member of Academia Europaea and of Accademia deiLincei as well as Honorary Foreign Member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He was recently elected Associéétranger of the Institut de France’s Académie des Sciences. Among Professor Rizzolatti’s major awards are the Golgi Prize for Physiology, the George Miller Award of the CognitiveNeuroscience Society, the Accademia deiLincei’s Feltrinelli Prize for Medicine and the Herlitzka Prize for Physiology awarded by the Accademia delleScienze di Torino. Since the early eighties, Professor Rizzolatti has been recording the activity of nerve cells in the brain specialised for the control of hand actions such as grabbing objects or picking items up. In 1996, this resulted in the discovery of "Mirror Neurons" that is neurons which fire or become active both when one performs such hand actions aswell as when one observes them in another. Some scientists consider “Mirror Neurons” as one of the most important findings in the last decade. Their potential importance lies with the fact that they may be the basis through which we are able to understand the intentions of others, acquire language and share feelings. For his continuous support to neuroscience in the Mediterranean regions will be awarded the MNS Emeritus Membership during the MNS2021.

Laszlo Zaborszky, Newark, NJ, USA

Laszlo ZaborszkyDistinguished Professor at Rutgers University (NJ, USA), founding Editor-in–Chief, Brain Structure and Function. Author of over 115 scientific papers, book chapters and a monograph. His research, supported by the NIH since 1986, has profound implications in the field of neural basis of attention, cognition as well as for such diseases as Alzheimer’s. Editor: Neuroanatomical Tract–Tracing Methods 2-3 (1989 Plenum; 2006 Springer). President, New York Hungarian Scientific Society (2012-2016), President, Association of American Hungarian Academicians (2018-2020), Foreign Member, Hungarian Academy of Sciences (2007-). Board of Trustees Award for Research Excellence (President, Rutgers University, 2016), Knight Cross, Order of Merit (President of Hungary, 2013).

George Paxinos, UNSW, Sidney, AU

George PaxinosScientia Professor George Paxinos studied psychology at The University of California at Berkeley, McGill University and Yale University before taking up a lectureship at The University of New South Wales, in Sydney. He is now an NHMRC Senior Principal Research Fellow at Neuroscience Research Australia and Scientia Professor at The University of New South Wales.
He identified 91 hitherto unknown regions in the brain of rats and humans and has published 57 books on the brain and spinal cord of humans and experimental animals and a novel that deals with environmental degradation. Most scientists working on the relationship between brain and emotion, motivation and thought, including neurologic or psychiatric diseases, or animal models of these diseases, use Paxinos’ atlases and concepts of brain organization. His first book, The Rat Brain in Stereotaxic Coordinates, is the most cited work in neuroscience. His Atlas of the Human Brain received the American Association of Publishers Award for Excellence in Publishing in Medical Science and the British Medical Association Illustrated Book Award. He received the Alexander von Humboldt Award and holds three honorary doctorates. In 2019 he was made a distinguished fellow of the Royal Society of New South Wales.
He served as president of the Australian Neuroscience Society and of the IBRO World Congress of Neuroscience.

Sherif El-Khamisy, Sheffield, UK

Sherif El-KhamisySherif El-Khamisy is a pharmacist by training, a Wellcome Trust Investigator and a Lister Institute Fellow at the University of Sheffield. Sherif's lab uses a combination of biochemical, genetic and whole animal approaches to study how cells maintain genomic integrity in health and disease. His early work revealed the importance of repairing chromosomal single-strand breaks to maintain neurological function. More recently, the lab identified new players and mechanisms for repairing oxidative and protein-linked chromosomal breaks and uncovered their connection to human disorders such as ataxia, dementia and ALS.

Female Pioneers from Ancient Egypt and the Middle East
Newly published book, about the appreciation of women who played vital roles in the evolution of science from the East. This book verifies that knowing about Eastern female pioneers' historical contributions in science, politics, and arts can advance today's gender roles in Middle Eastern countries and encourage young women living in Western societies with Eastern migration backgrounds.Broadening the public perception of these significant historical figures, therefore, has very high societal relevance. This knowledge offers a detailed evaluation of women's gender roles in Ancient Egypt and the Middle East, outlining their prominence and influence. It also discusses the possible psychological and social impact of this knowledge on today's gender roles. The evaluation involves crossing disciplines such as natural sciences, neuroscience, psychology, sociology, Islamic theology, history and arts, including diverse geographical regions worldwide.
Prestigious Italian Honour of ‘Knight’ for MNS President Giuseppe Di Giovanni
Congratulations Sir!!! Our President Giuseppe Di Giovanni has been awarded the honour of Cavaliere of the Order of the Star of Italy by the President of the Italian Republic Mattarella. The award included a diploma signed by the President of the Italian Republic and a Knight pin.The Ordine della Stella d’Italia recognises President Di Giovanni’s efforts to develop cooperation between Italy and Malta in the fields of science and culture.
The decoration is awarded to Italian and foreign citizens for their “extraordinary achievements in promoting friendly relations between Italy and other countries”.
“I am deeply honoured to receive this prestigious award,” said President Di Giovanni. This reflects Prof. Di Giovanni’s growing reputation for excellence in professional education and research as well as the international culture.
Throughout the years, President Di Giovanni has supported cultural exchanges strongly associated with Italy.
This award represents another significant honour for our President.
PhD studentship at the Medicine Department, University Jaume I de Castelló (UJI).
Applications are invited for a PhD studentship at the Medicine Department, University Jaume I de Castelló (UJI).The PhD candidate will be granted for a period of 4 years with a planned start between September 2021/January 2022 upon agreement with the successful candidate (Santiago Grisolia's Program from the Generalitat Valenciana; must be enrolled in a master program and hold a BsC in Biology, Biomedicine, Biochemistry, Biotechnology, Psychology or related disciplines issued by a non-EU University or Institution. Neuroscience MsC is strongly desirable but not mandatory. The PhD project will aim at understanding the role of peptidergic transmission in pathological aggression related to alcohol abuse. During these 4 years, the candidate will work with two transgenic mouse lines and will be skilled in stereotaxic surgery, pharmacogenetics, optogenetics, behavioral paradigms, immunohistochemistry, cell culture, molecular neurobiology, confocal microscopy, RNAscope, ....To apply, please send your CV and a motivation letter (max. 2 pages) before 10 June 2021 to:Dr. Esther Castillo-Gómez ( Francisco Olucha ( Francisco Ros (
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Post-doc position for an in vitro electrophysiologist @ Crunelli/Di Giovanni Lab
Post-doc position for an in vitro electrophysiologist available at Giuseppe Di Giovanni's laboratory at the University of Malta for a collaborative research project with Professor Vincenzo Crunelli, Cardiff University, to investigate the role of serotonin 5-HT2C receptors in absence-epilepsy.
Job descriptionCALL FOR APPLICATIONS (Call ID: 37/2021) Post/s of Full-Time Research Support Officer III Project – “Lorcaserin as New Treatment for Absence Epilepsy – A Preclinical Study to pave the way for the clinical trial” And any other projects undertaken by the Department of Physiology & Biochemistry, Faculty of Medicine & Surgery 1. Applications are invited for the post of Research Support Officer to carry out duties in relation to the Lorcaserin as New Treatment for Absence Epilepsy – A Preclinical Study to pave the way for the clinical trial project funded by the University of Malta’s Internal Research Fund. The Research Support Officer may also be required to work on other projects undertaken by the Department of Physiology & Biochemistry within the Faculty of Medicine & Surgery. 2. Applicants should be in possession of a PhD in the area of Neuroscience. The University of Malta is an Equal Opportunity employer. 3. Applicants must be willing and able to work in Malta. 4. The full-time post is for a period of 12 months and carries an initial remuneration of €31,200 per annum. 5. Candidates must submit their covering letter, a copy of their curriculum vitae, a scanned copy of their certificates (certificates of degrees must be submitted in English), and contact details of at least two referees. Applications must be sent by e-mail by not later than Friday, 30 April 2021. Late applications will not be considered. 6. Further information about the vacancy may be obtained from: Office of the University, Msida, 16 February 2021