International Neuroscience Summit at UP




An outstanding scientific event, the International Neuroscience Conference was organized between 25-26 January in the Grastyán Endre Theoretical Building of the Medical School, University of Pécs. At the two-day, English-language, interdisciplinary symposium, several renowned speakers presented the latest international and domestic research results to more than 400 participants. At the prestigious event Dr. László Lénárd, rector emeritus of UP, neurobiologist, Dr. György Buzsáki, renowned brain researcher, honorary doctor of UP, Dr. Christoph Koch, senior researcher, Dr. Joseph LeDoux, professor at New York University, and János Boros, UP gave fascinating plenary lectures on various topics related to neuroscience.

"As a biophysicist, I find neuroscience a particularly exciting field. They say that the final frontier is space, I do not dispute that. But perhaps there are others, for example, the human brain.

The answer to the question of whether the human brain is capable to understand the human brain remains to be seen.

I hope that we will be able to find answers" – said Dr. Miklós Nyitrai, dean of the UP Medical School.

Dr. István Hernádi, President of the Hungarian Neuroscience Society, shared a memory: "Exactly thirty years ago, as a first-year PhD student, I sat in the audience with great enthusiasm.

I wanted to study the brain, no matter what.

Yesterday, I was sitting in the audience in the same way, still feeling the same: wanting to explore the brain the same way, no matter what. As Professor Buzsáki put it, this is our passion, the object of our enthusiasm, this is our life", he emphasized, adding: "I am very pleased that two-thirds of the participants of the conference are members of the Hungarian Society of Neuroscience."

The first speaker of the congress was Dr. László Lénárd, rector emeritus, the first president of the Hungarian Neuroscience Society, who in his plenary lecture reviewed the history of the renowned scientific society from its beginnings to the present day. "The International Brain Research Organization (IBRO), founded in 1961, became the global comprehensive unit of neuroscience, to which many Hungarian researchers were invited, but only a few were able to really participate, due to the difficulties of traveling to the West. This was a significant disadvantage for Hungarian researchers in establishing international contacts and developing Hungarian neuroscience" – recalled Dr. László Lénárd. The professor also showed pictures taken 30 years ago at the first Neuroscience Conference of the newly founded Hungarian Neuroscience Society, much to the delight of the audience. The pictures featured Tamás Freund, Attila Baranyi, Zoltán Karádi, Professor Szolcsányi, István Ábrahám and many other researchers, who familiar to many in the audience.

Professor Lénárd was followed by Dr. György Buzsáki on the podium, the internationally renowned Brain Prize-winning researcher.

"From the beginning, humanity has been interested in its own thinking, the psyche, the soul, the mind, and ultimately this is why we began to study the brain.

Curiosity, of course, is one of the greatest curses of man, because this is why we work very, very hard to find answers to the questions that concern us" – highlighted the famous brain researcher, Dr. György Buzsáki in his fascinating plenary lecture in the packed room.

Based on long-standing collaborations between neuroscience researchers around the world, the organizing committee of the conference has put together an outstanding program with the participation of the Hungarian neuroscience community. Exciting plenary lectures, symposia and informative posters provided an opportunity for professionals and young researchers to discuss the links with other disciplines beyond the professional issues of neuroscience. In addition to professional activities, the conference's gala dinner also allowed a more informal exchange of ideas and a high-quality artistic program. The guests of the conference enjoyed a concert by Mihály Boros, Junior Prima Prize-winning young pianist.

Written by: Mariann Tóth

Photo: Szabolcs Csortos 

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