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Plenary speakers


Plenary speakers

who will be sharing their knowledge and insights on the latest trends in health interventions.


Prof. Véronique Deroche-Gamonet PhD, HDR

Université de Bordeaux, INSERM, Neurocentre Magendie, Bordeaux, France

2018 – Team Leader „Psychobiology of Drug Addiction”, Neurocentre Magendie, Inserm U1215, Bordeaux, France.

2016 – Nominated member of Inserm CSS4.

2015-2019 – Coordinator FRM project („Nicotine addicts: are they all the same? A new preclinical model identifying subpopulations of nicotine users and user-dependent treatment effect”)

2014-2018 – Coordinator ERA-Net NEURON CocAddict project (

Since 2011 – Coordinator of a multicentre project for an Instrumental and procedural platform for innovation in experimental psychopathology in rodents (EquipEx OptoPath:

2011 – Research Director (DR2 INSERM)

Since 2007 – Leader of the Group Psychobiology of Addiction – Laboratory of Physiopathology of Addiction, NeuroCentre Magendie, Inserm U862, Bordeaux, France.

2003-2006 – Leader of the Group Psychobiology of Addiction – Laboratory of Pathophysiology of Adaptive Behaviors, Neurocentre Magendie, Inserm U588, Bordeaux, France.

1999-2002 – Promoted CR1 INSERM – Laboratory of Psychobiology of Adaptive Behaviors, Inserm U259, Bordeaux, France.

1999 – HDR – University of Bordeaux 2, France.

1994-1998 – Tenure researcher position (CR2 Inserm) – Laboratory of Psychobiology of Adaptive Behaviors, Inserm U259, Bordeaux, France.

1994 – Post-doctoral fellow – The Scripps Research Institute (Dpt of Neuropharmacology), La Jolla, California, USA.

1993 – Prix Jeunes Chercheurs de la Fondation Bettencourt-Schueller.

1993 – PhD Neuroscience and Pharmacology – Univ. Bordeaux 2, France.

1991 – MSc – Univ. Bordeaux 2, France

1990 – Master1 – Univ. Paris-Sud 11, France.

1989 – Bachelor – Univ. Rennes 1, France.

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Prof. Gustavo Turecki PhD, MD

Douglas Hospital Research Centre, McGill Group for Suicide Studies, Montreal, Quebec, Canada

Gustavo Turecki is a clinician-scientist who has been involved in the investigation of the neurobiology of depression and suicide, with a particular interest on functional genomics and epigenetics. Dr Turecki’s laboratory has made important contributions to our understanding of biological processes underlying psychopathology, including the first description of molecular mechanisms explaining the impact of childhood traumatic experiences on brain function. Dr. Turecki’s work uses epidemiological, clinical, psychosocial and basic research approaches, and has significantly advanced knowledge on mechanisms leading to suicide and suicidal behaviour. In addition, his laboratory has also made important contributions to the investigation of mechanisms of antidepressant response.

In addition to his scientific work, Dr. Turecki fulfills important local, national and international leadership roles in research, intervention and knowledge transfer in the field of suicide and depression. He is Full Professor and Chair of the Department of Psychiatry at McGill University and the Director of the McGill Group for Suicide Studies (MGSS), a world-leading multidisciplinary suicide research group ( with researchers in anthropology, psychology, epidemiology, anatomy and molecular biology. The MGSS also includes as a unique international resource, the Quebec Suicide Brain Bank (now a part of the Douglas-Bell Canada Brain Bank;, which sends over 2,000 brain samples to the best laboratories in the world every year. Dr. Turecki is also the Scientific Director of the Douglas Research Centre. Finally, as a clinician, Dr. Turecki is the Psychiatrist-in-Chief of the Douglas Mental Health University Intitute and associated hospitals (Montreal West Island CIUSSS) and heads the Depressive Disorders Program at the Douglas Mental Health University Institute, where he treats patients with refractory major depressive disorder.

Dr. Turecki is a Fellow of the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences and a Fellow of several scientific organizations, such as the International Academy of Suicide Research. He also serves, or has served, in the advisory boards of several scientific journals, and international scientific institutes, such as the Max Planck Institute, and was the inaugural Chair of the CIHR Advisory Board on Research Excellence, Policy and Ethics.


Prof. Stefan Chłopicki, PhD, MD

Jagiellonian Centre for Experimental Therapeutics (JCET), Jagiellonian University, Krakow, Poland


Prof. Johannes Kornhuber, PhD, MD

Department of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy, Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg University Hospital, Erlangen, Germany

  • Erforscht die molekularen Wirkmechanismen von Psychopharmaka sowie die Entstehung wichtiger psychiatrischer Krankheitsbilder
  • Machine learnning/AI für depressive Patienten (Monitoring)

Prof. Kathryn A. Cunningham, PhD

The University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston, USA

Dr. Cunningham received her Ph.D. in Experimental Psychology and Psychopharmacology from the University of South Carolina. Dr. Cunningham is the Chauncey Leake Distinguished Professor of Pharmacology and the Director of the Center for Addiction Research at the University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston, Texas.

She leads a team comprised of over 40 members contributing to research affiliated directly with the study of addiction and associated behaviors. A world-renown leader, she is a highly sought-after speaker and has led this specific type of research for over 20 years.

Dr. Cunningham’s laboratory has made multiple contributions to our understanding of the pharmacology associated with psychiatric disorders including addiction behavior. Her laboratory is highly advanced and established new cellular, behavioral and molecular methods to study these systems and to discovery and explore the biology of new medication candidates developed with affiliated chemists. Dr. Cunningham’s research focuses on an all-inclusive operation that allows for cross-disciplinary, translational research efforts with medicinal chemists, biomedical engineers, cell biologists, and clinical scientists contributing findings as an expert team to find cures for our mental and addiction health needs. Dr. Cunningham is an active educator, mentor and board member for community programs.

Prof. Stéphane Oliet, PhD

Bordeaux Neurocampus, University de Bordeaux, France

Invited speakers


Giuseppe Grasso

University of Catania, Catania, Italy

In 2000 Prof. Grasso obtained the “Laurea” in Chemistry in Catania (110/110 cum laude) from the University of Catania and in 2004 the PhD in Chemistry from the University of Nottingham (UK). After several post-docs he finally got a permanent position at the University of Catania in 2010 where he is currently employed as an Associate professor. He also has the National qualification to become a Full Professor. He is the ERASMUS coordinator within the Erasmus+ Program, Key Action 1 – Mobility for learners and staff-Higher Education Student and Staff Mobility with universities from France, Poland, UK, Germany and Portugal. Currently he is at the UNIVERSITE DE CERGY-PONTOISE as a visiting Professor. In 2020 he has been elected President of the Bachelor Course in Chemistry at the University of Catania.

The research of Prof. Grasso is focused on the study of molecular interactions between biomolecules involved in certain neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease. In particular, some metalloproteases involved with these diseases are studied and the possibility of modulating the enzymatic activity of these biomolecules for therapeutic purposes is investigated. The influence that metal ions such as copper or zinc have on the biomolecular mechanisms involved in neurodegeneration is also studied using various analytical techniques such as mass spectrometry, surface plasmon resonance, NMR, etc.

Giuseppe Grasso has authored or co-authored more than 80 papers and he has an h-index of 28. He has attended more than 60 international conferences, presenting his work either as an oral communication or as a keynote lecture.


Jeffrey M. Witkin

University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee, USA

Dr. Jeffrey M. Witkin, Ph.D., is a senior investigator in the Laboratory of Antiepileptic Drug Discovery that he founded with neurosurgeon Jodi L. Smith at Ascension, St. Vincent in Indianapolis, Indiana.  He is also an adjunct professor at the   University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee where he co-led the team to bring an a2/3-selective GABAkine, KRM-II-81, to ResprireRx Pharmaceutics Inc where he now serves as a Senior Research Fellow.  Dr. Witkin is one of the co-founders of Gilgamesh Pharmaceutics and his due diligence has help to foster several new start-up companies.  For 17 years, he directed a neuroscience discovery group at the Lilly Research Labs that discovered multiple antidepressants and novel glutamate and GABA receptor neuromodulators.  Key scientific contributions from his work have enabled the discovery and development of anxiolytics, antidepressants, and antiepileptic medicines.   Dr. Witkin’s work on AMPAkines has been one of the primary mechanistic guides to the discovery of rapid-acting antidepressants.  His laboratory was the first to disclose the antiepileptic effects of the neuroactive steroid ganaxolone that was recently approved as a medicine.  His biological leadership over the studies of LY2940094 (BTX-246040), a novel NOP receptor antagonist, led to the first proof-of-principle study of antidepressant activity in patients for this mechanism.  He is the patent holder for the invention of the antiepileptic effects of LY3130481 (ES-481), the first g-8 TARP-dependent AMPA receptor antagonist under development for intractable epilepsy.  He is most excited about bringing an mGlu2/3 receptor antagonist for IV and oral use to the scientific community.  He is a world class scientist with over 250 peer-reviewed publications, and recently edited the book, Neuropsychopharmacology, for Elsevier.  He has been awarded several invention patents and multiple scientific honors.


Vladimir Havlíček

Institute of Microbiology of the Czech Academy of Sciences, Prague, Czech Republic

Vladimír Havlíček studied organic technology and received a Ph.D. in analytical chemistry at the Prague Institute of Chemical Technology. After a postdoctoral stay at the University of Washington in Seattle, he began conducting proteomics, lipidomics, and metabolomics experiments in the Czech Republic, focusing on mass spectrometry imaging and ambient ionization techniques. Since 2006 he has been appointed the Chair of the Laboratory of Molecular Structure Characterization at the Institute of Microbiology (Prague, Czech Republic), now harboring microbiology, mass spectrometry, nuclear magnetic resonance, and electron microscopy equipment. In the 2022 four-month sabbatical, he received training in analytical chemistry and infection microbiology from K.A. Schug (UTA, Texas) and D.A. Stevens (CIMR, California). In medical topics, his laboratory members provide instrumental support to research groups on campus & overseas with focus to both non-communicable and infectious diseases. Laboratory central analytical concept, named infection metallomics, exploits host-microbial consortia interactions moderated with antimicrobial therapies in the lung, central nervous system, and urogenital tract infections.


Agnieszka Zelek-Molik

Maj Institute of Pharmacology, Polish Academy of Sciences, Kraków

Agnieszka Zelek-Molik is an assistant professor in the Department of Brain Biochemistry, Maj Institute of Pharmacology, Polish Academy of Sciences, in Kraków, Poland. In her scientific work, she focuses primarily on studying the processes accompanying the development of mental disorders related to stress and drug addiction. She gained her scientific experience also abroad, especially at the Medical University of South Carolina, working in in JF McGinty Lab of the Neuroscience Department.


Agnieszka Chocyk

Maj Institute of Pharmacology, Polish Academy of Sciences, Kraków, Poland

Agnieszka Chocyk, PhD is a assistant professor in the Laboratory of Pharmacology and Brain Biostructure, Department of Pharmacology of the Maj Institute of Pharmacology, Polish Academy of Sciences. Her scientific experience and interests focus on the effects of early-life stress on brain maturation and functions and the mechanisms of susceptibility and resilience to stress-related psychopathologies.


Rachel Smith

Texas A&M University, USA

Rachel Smith is an assistant professor in the Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences at Texas A&M University in the USA. Her lab studies the behavioral neuroscience of drug addiction and is focused on understanding the behavioral and neurobiological mechanisms underlying habitual and compulsive behaviors.


Vittorio Maglione

Neuromed, Pozzilli, Italy

Vittorio Maglione is a neuroscientist with over 25 years of research experience in molecular genetics, molecular and cellular biology and biochemistry and with the use of multiple study models (from primary cells to mouse models) in context of Huntington disease (HD) and other neurological disorders including Parkinson’s disease and Rett SynDr.ome. Vittorio Maglione has completed his PhD in Neurobiology from University of Catania (Italy) and postdoctoral studies first from Neurological Institute “IRCCS Neuromed” (Italy) and successively from University of Alberta (Canada). After he have been awarded a Marie Curie Fellowship, he became Group Leader at “Neurogenetics Lab” of IRCCS Neuromed. Dr. Maglione’s major interest is the investigation of the biochemical and genetic mechanisms underling neuronal dysfunctions and neurodegeneration. Over the last ten years Dr. Maglione’s research has demonstrated that the alterations in the metabolism of (glyco)sphingolipids are a critical determinant in the pathogenesis of HD and other neurological disorders and may represent a potential therapeutic target. Thanks to this research Dr.. Maglione filled a patent granted in USA in 2015 (US9023812B2). Other projects include the development of gene therapy as therapeutic approach for neurodegenerative diseases. Dr.. Maglione is author of more than 60 scientific peer-reviewed papers and is Associate Editor for Frontiers in Neuroscience – Neurodegeneration and Frontiers in Molecular Neuroscience. He is also Member of the “European Huntington Disease Network” (EHDN), “Huntington Study Group” (HDS) and of both European and International Neurochemistry Society (ESN and ISN). Dr. Maglione is currently the Scientific Secretary of the International Association “Sphingolipid Club”.


Alessandro Prinetti

University of Milano, Italy

Professor Alessandro Prinetti, PhD was involved in research activities within the field of sphingolipid biochemistry and cell biology since 1984. His scientific personality was shaped in two of the leading laboratories worldwide in this research area: the laboratory of Sphingolipid Biochemistry at the Dept. of Medical Chemistry, Biochemistry and Biotechnology, University of Milano, under the guidance of G. Tettamanti, and the laboratory of S. Hakomori at the Dept. of Pathobiology /Pacific Northwest Research Institute, University of Washington (Seattle, WA, USA). In the early years of his scientific activity, he contributed to elucidate glycosphingolipid metabolic pathways in the nervous system, and in particular to define the metabolic mechanisms responsible for the generation of bioactive sphingolipids. More recently, his studies contributed to define the concept of lipid rafts. In particular, his research highlighted the importance of sphingolipids in modulating the generation of signals at the plasma membrane by either determining the dynamic properties of specialized membrane signaling platforms, or affecting the activity of plasma membrane signaling complexes via specific sphingolipid-protein interactions. His achievements shed a new light on the role of sphingolipids in the physiopathology of nervous system and in tumor cell biology. In particular, AP studied sphingolipid patterns, metabolism and function related to neuronal differentiation and neurodegeneration, myelin formation and repair, neoplastic transformation, tumor cell adhesion and invasiveness. His current main research projects deal with the role of sphingolipids in myelin formation and repair of damaged myelin. His scientific activity is documented by 124 papers in peer-reviewed journals or book chapters (5,987 citations, h-index: 42) and more than 100 communications to scientific meetings. Prof. Prinetti has been actively engaged in scientific societies. He has been Council Member, Secretary and President of the European Society for Neurochemistry. He has been the Chair of the Programme Committee of the 24th ESN Biennial Meeting – 8th Conference on Molecular Mechanisms of Regulation in the Nervous System After being Council Member and Chair of different committees within the International Society for Neurochemistry, he is now the Treasurer of ISN (2021-2025).


Justyna Barut

Maj Institute of Pharmacology, Polish Academy of Sciences, Kraków

Justyna Barut is a PhD student in the Department of Brain Biochemistry, Maj Institute of Pharmacology, Polish Academy of Sciences, in Kraków, Poland. Her PhD thesis is about creating new transgenic mice models of the early phase of Parkinson’s disease and the involvement of noradrenergic transmission in this process. She is also interested in astrocytes and their role in the pathogenesis of Parkinson’s disease, which she investigates in her research project.


Laura Musazzi

School of Medicine and Surgery, University of Milano-Bicocca, Milan, Italy

Dr. Musazzi graduated in Pharmaceutical Biotechnologies in 2004 and obtain the PhD in Pharmacological Sciences in 2008, at the University of Milano (IT). From 2009 to 2015, she worked as postdoctoral associate in the Laboratory of Neuropsychopharmacology and Functional Neurogenomics, directed by Prof. Maurizio Popoli. In 2010, she won a European College of Neuropsychopharmacology (ECNP) research grant for young scientists and spent 12 months at the Aarhus University (DK), learning stereological approaches.

From 2015 to 2018, she was Assistant Professor in Pharmacology at the University of Milan and in 2020, she became tenured Associate Professor in the University of Milano-Bicocca (Department of Medicine and Surgery). Her main research interest are the investigation of the regulation of synaptic function, neuroplasticity, and gene expression in acute/chronic stress and study of the pathogenesis of psychiatric disorders as well as mechanisms of psychotropic drugs.

She published over 60 articles in peer-reviewed international journals.


Yonatan Kupchik

The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Israel

Yonatan Kupchik is an associate professor in the Department of Medical Neurobiology, IMRIC, at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem in Israel and a head of the Center for Addiction Research at the Faculty of Medicine of the Hebrew University. His lab is interested in understanding the neurobiological processes that turn normal motivated behavior into an addiction. They investigate this by combining state-of-the-art tools with behavioral models of pathological motivation to target and manipulate specific circuits in the reward system and evaluate synaptic plasticity in drug addiction and overeating.


Marta Dziedzicka-Wasylewska

Maj Institute of Pharmacology, Polish Academy of Sciences, Kraków, Poland

Prof. Marta Dziedzicka-Wasylewska works at the Institute of Pharmacology, Polish Academy of Sciences, Kraków, and at the Jagiellonian Uniwersity, Faculty of Biochemistry, Biophysics and Biotechnology.

Her research interests revolve around the mechanisms of action of antidepressant and antipsychotic drugs, with a particular focus on membrane receptors important in neurotransmission, such as dopamine and serotonin receptors. Series of papers concerning heterodimerization of G protein-coupled receptors and the role of that phenomenon in the mechanism of action of various psychotropic drugs, including clozapine and antidepressant drugs have been recently awarded by the prestigious Jedrzej Śniadecki Award of Division V Medical Sciences of the Polish Academy of Sciences (2019).

More recent research is focused on mechanisms responsible for susceptibility and resilience to stress as well as on biomarkers of resilience, with a particular focus on microRNAs. In a series of papers, we’ve recently shown that certain microRNAs may serve as biomarkers of response (susceptibility or resilience) to acute and chronic stress in experimental animal models. The results in this field published in a series of papers: „Determination of the role of selected microRNAs as biomarkers of stress resilience” was awarded in 2022 by Division V Medical Sciences of the Polish Academy of Sciences with the team prize.

In her work, prof. M. Dziedzicka-Wasylewska applies methods from the scope of biochemistry, biophysics, molecular biology and cell biology as well as behavioral techniques used in psychopharmacology.


Barbara Błasiak

Institute of Nuclear Physics Polish Academy of Sciences, Kraków, Poland

Barbara Błasiak obtained her PhD degree in physics in 2011 and habilitation in 2018. Her research focused on magnetic resonance imaging. Her career began with the rf coils design for MRI, multinuclei MR Spectroscopy and low field MRI. Currently she is working as a Professor in Institute of Nuclear Physics Department of Magnetic Resonance Imaging in Krakow. She made many foreign internships at the University of Victoria, University of Calgary and National Research of Council in Canada where she was involved in the applications of nano-technology in medicine and molecular imaging of brain, breast and prostate cancer.

Jakub Włodarczyk

Jakub Włodarczyk

Nencki Institute of Experimental Biology of Polish Academy of Science, Warsaw, Poland

Dr. Jakub Wlodarczyk obtained his PhD in Physics from Warsaw University (Poland) in 2006 and a postdoctoral training in Max Planck Institute for Biophysical Chemistry (Goettingen. Germany). Since 2012, he leads a Laboratory of Cell Biophysics at the Nencki Institute (Warsaw, Poland). In 2020 he was nominated Professor of Natural Sciences. The main field of his interest is aberrant synaptic plasticity underlying stress related disorders and stress resilience. He studies structural and functional synaptic modifications regulated by posttranslational modifications. He develops and employs novel imaging based techniques and mass spectrometry methods to assess the reorganization of activity patterns accompanied by local volumetric and molecular changes at the synapses.


Christian P. Müller

Friedrich-Alexander University Erlangen-Nuremberg, Erlangen, Germany

Christian P. Müller was born in 1972 in Annaberg-Buchholz, a small place in former German Democratic Republic. After German reunification, he studied Psychology and Philosophy at the Universities of Düsseldorf and Oxford, UK. He obtained a Diploma in Experimental Psychology from Düsseldorf University, where he studied and worked in Joe Huston’s lab for many years. After several research visits at the Primate Center of Brasilia University, Brazil, and Syracuse University, US, he got his PhD in 2003 from Düsseldorf University and in 2006 his Habilitation. His own research focused on the serotonergic system and its role in behavior and behavioral pathologies. In 2007 he moved as a Senior Lecturer to the Institute of Psychiatry at King’s College London, UK, where he built up a rodent lab focusing on the neurobiology of psychiatric disorders, and particular drug addiction. Since 2010 he is Professor for Addiction Medicine at the University of Erlangen-Nuremberg, Germany. With that, research scope widened with a strong interest in brain lipids and translational approaches from cell systems, rodent and primate models up to human behaviors and their evolutionary origin. So far, Christian P. Müller has published more than 160 papers and book chapters (h-index: 51). He currently serves in the editorial boards of several journals, like ‘Addiction Biology’, ‘Brain Research Bulletin’, ‘Pharmacological Reports’, ‘Psychopharmacology’, and ‘Frontiers in Behavioral Neuroscience’. He is Editor-in-chief of the journal ‘Behavioural Brain Research’


Shigeyuki Chaki

Taisho Pharmaceutical, Japan

Shigeyuki Chaki, PhD, received a B.S. in Pharmacy from Tokyo University of Pharmacy and Life Sciences (Tokyo, Japan) in 1985, an M.S. in Biochemistry from Tokyo University of Pharmacy and Life Sciences in 1987, and a Ph.D. in Pharmacology from Tohoku University (Miyagi, Japan) in 1995. From 1990 to 1993, he was trained at the Department of Biochemistry, Vanderbilt University School of Medicine (Nashville, TN), where he had worked on peptide GPCRs under supervision of Dr. Tadashi Inagami. He joined Taisho Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd, in 1987, and has led several projects including CRF1 receptor antagonists, V1b receptor antagonists, MCH1 receptor antagonists, mGlu2/3 receptor agonists/antagonists and glycine transporter 1 inhibitors for the treatment of depression or schizophrenia. He has been responsible for leading drug discovery and development for psychiatric disorders, such as schizophrenia, depression and anxiety at Taisho. Currently, he is Fellow at Taisho.

Dr. Chaki received a B.S. in Pharmacy from Tokyo University of Pharmacy and Life Sciences (Tokyo, Japan) in 1985, an M.S. in Biochemistry from Tokyo University of Pharmacy and Life Sciences in 1987, and a Ph.D. in Pharmacology from Tohoku University (Miyagi, Japan) in 1995. From 1990 to 1993, he was trained at the Department of Biochemistry, Vanderbilt University School of Medicine (Nashville, TN), where he had worked on peptide GPCRs under supervision of Dr. Tadashi Inagami. He joined Taisho Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd, in 1987, and has led several projects including CRF1 receptor antagonists, V1b receptor antagonists, MCH1 receptor antagonists, mGlu2/3 receptor agonists/antagonists and glycine transporter 1 inhibitors for the treatment of depression or schizophrenia. He has been responsible for leading drug discovery and development for psychiatric disorders, such as schizophrenia, depression and anxiety at Taisho. Currently, he is Fellow at Taisho.

Józef Dulak

Józef Dulak

Faculty of Biochemistry, Biophysics and Biotechnology

Józef Dulak, PhD, DSc, is the professor and head of the Department of Medical Biotechnology at the Faculty of Biochemistry, Biophysics and Biotechnology of the Jagiellonian University in Kraków, Poland. He is elected member of the Polish Academy of Arts and Sciences and  member of Academia Europaea. Currently he is the vice-chairman of the Committee of Biotechnology of the Polish Academy of Sciences. He worked as post-doctoral fellow at Free University in Amsterdam (1991), University in Muenster  (1994) and Stanford University (1997), and was the research fellow at the University of Innsbruck (1999-2001). He is the doctor honoris causa of the University of Orleans in France (2012), received the “Dr. Luis Federico Leloir” Award from the Argentinian Ministry of Science and Technology (2014), and has been invited to lecture at numerous international conferences and foreign institutions, including the visiting professorship from the Japanese Society  for the Promotion of Science (2010) and at the University of Orleans (2009, 2013).  From  2013 to 2020 he was the coordinator of the International Associated Laboratory (LIA) of the Jagiellonian University and CBM CNRS in Orleans, he was the president of the European Vascular Biology Organization (EVBO) – 2013-2017.

He conducts research on molecular mechanisms of cardiovascular diseases and genetic neuromuscular diseases, including the function of stem cells and the possibilities of genetic and cell therapies. He is the co-author of more than 280 papers (h-index is 56), and is  the co-inventor of one patent. Prof. Dulak coordinated numerous grants (more than 13,5 million Euro in the last 10 years), both research and infrastructural.



Danilo De Gregorio

Vita-Salute University and San Raffaele Scientific Institute, Milan, Italy

Danilo De Gregorio obtained a Pharm.D. degree from the University of Naples “Federico II”, Italy, followed by a Ph.D. in Neuropharmacology from the University of Campania “Vanvitelli”, Naples, Italy. He trained as a postdoctoral fellow at the Department of Psychiatry, McGill University, Montreal (QC), Canada under the supervisions of Prof. Gabriella Gobbi and Prof.  Nahum Sonenberg. Since March 2021, he holds the position of Assistant Professor of Pharmacology, Vita-Salute San Raffaele University. By combining cutting-edge in vivo behavioral and electrophysiological techniques in animal models, Danilo has made contributions to the understanding of the psychopharmacology of psychoactive compounds including hallucinogens and cannabinoids and their role in mental disorders.  His work has been published in relevant scientific journals (including Nature, PNAS, Nature Communications). He has received numerous awards for his work including the Canadian Institute of Health Research (CIHR) grant and the Fonds pour la recherche en Santé du Québec.


Séverine Morisset-Lopez

Molecular Biophysics Center, The University of Orléans, INSERM, France

Dr Morisset-Lopez obtained her PhD in Molecular Pharmacology from Paris V University (France) in 1999 and joined the Center of Psychiatry and Neurosciences in Paris in 2002 as CNRS (The National Center for Scientific Research) researcher. She contributed to better understand the molecular mechanisms regulating the histamine H3 receptor activity. She is currently a senior scientist at the Center for Molecular Biophysics (Orléans, France) where she co-leads the department of Biology (BioBRAT) and heads the team « Neurobiology of receptors and therapeutic innovations” (NeuRIT).  The main field of her interest lies in G protein-coupled receptors pharmacology and neurobiological mechanisms of the pathophysiology of central nervous system disorders. Her ongoing studies concern the pharmacology of serotonin 5-HT7 receptor, its biased signalling and its role in neuro-oncology, pain and neuroinflammatory diseases such as multiple sclerosis. For that purpose, her team sets up various cellular assays, based on BRET, nanoBRET and Phage display methods for drug screening and also develops animal models of neuropathologies in mice and Drosophila in order to evaluate the therapeutic potential of new 5-HT7 ligands.


Charles Nichols

Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center in New Orleans, LA.

Dr. Nichols currently is a professor of pharmacology at Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center in New Orleans, LA. He earned his B.S. at Purdue University, his Ph.D. at Carnegie Mellon University, and performed his postdoctoral work at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine in the Department of Pharmacology researching. He has been studying the cellular, molecular, genetic, and behavioral effects of 5-HT2A receptor and psychedelics for over 25 years and is considered one of the world’s top experts on the biological effects of psychedelics in the brain and body. He is a founding member of the International Society for Research on Psychedelics, and its current President. He is also Co-Editor in Chief of Psychedelic Medicine. Key discoveries he and his laboratory have made include elucidation of the effects of psychedelics on gene expression in the brain, identification, and characterization of the specific cells in the brain that directly respond to psychedelics, and the development of new rodent and fruit fly experimental systems recapitulating the long-lasting antidepressant-like effects of psilocybin for mechanistic study. Dr. Nichols has also discovered that psychedelics are extremely potent anti-inflammatory agents, and can have full efficacy at levels far below those necessary to induce behavioral effects in several models of inflammatory diseases. Drug discovery efforts are currently underway in his laboratory to develop psychedelics without behavioral effects for the treatment of inflammatory diseases


Jacek Stępniewski

Department of Medical Biotechnology, Jagiellonian University, Kraków, Poland.

Jacek Stępniewski, PhD is a post-doc at the Department of Medical Biotechnology, Jagiellonian University, Kraków, Poland. His scientific interests concern application of human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSC) and CRISPR/Cas9 gene editing for studying molecular basis of genetic diseases, including Duchenne and LAMA2-related muscular dystrophies. Additionally, ongoing research is focused on characterization of new factors regulating human cardiomyocytes and augmenting the therapeutic potential of hiPSC-derived cells in the treatment of myocardial infarction.


Iskra Pollak Dorocic

Stockholm University and Science for Life Laboratory in Sweden

Iskra Pollak Dorocic is an Assistant Professor at Stockholm University and Science for Life Laboratory in Sweden. She obtained her PhD at Karolinska Institute studying neural connectivity of the serotonin system, and completed a postdoctoral fellowship at University of California, Berkeley where she recorded neural activity of serotonin neurons during complex behaviors. Her lab is focused on the molecular heterogeneity of neuromodulators, including serotonin and dopamine. The lab utilizes genetic and molecular profiling, neuroanatomy and connectivity mapping, in vivo imaging of neural activity, and optical neuromanipulation techniques in transgenic mice, with the goal of untangling specific components of neural circuits and studying their contribution to both healthy brain function and disease.


Sifeng Chen

Fudan University Shanghai College of Medicine, Shanghai, China

Professor Chen’s research mainly focuses on the pathogenesis of inflammatory vascular injury, gene and stem cell therapy research. He was the Chairman of the Department of Physiology and Pathophysiology, Shanghai College of Medicine of Fudan University, and the director of the Center for Kidney and Hypertension of Fudan University.
Professor Chen received his Bachelor’s Degree of Medicine in 1985 and Master degree of Pathophysiology in 1988 from Second Military Medical University, Shanghai, China. He served as an associate Professor of Pathophysiology at the Department of Pathophysiology of Second Military Medical University before leaving for Germany to work at Department of Experimental Surgery in University of Magdeburg School of Medicine as an Alexander von Humboldt Fellowship in 1997. In 1998, he went to United States to work at Department of Medicine in University of Florida School of Medicine. Before returning to China to work in Fudan University Shanghai College of Medicine in 2006, he was an assistant professor of internal medicine at the University of Alabama School of Medicine (Birmingham).
Professor Chen was principal investigator and co-investigator of 4 NIH research grants in the United States. In the past 5 years, he serves as principal investigator of the key project of the National Key R&D Program, grants awarded by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (key projects, major international cooperation projects, international cooperation, major research plan projects and general projects), and the National Key Basic Research and Development Program (973).
Professor Chen has published more than 90 articles in SCI journals, including Cir Res, AJT, PNAS, JASN, JEM and other journals. At present, he serves as the vice chairman of the Chinese Physiological Association, the standing director of the Chinese Pathophysiology Association and the Chinese Microcirculation Association.


Agnieszka Łoboda

Department of Medical Biotechnology, Jagiellonian University in Kraków

Prof. Agnieszka Łoboda received her Ph.D. degree in 2006 and D.Sc. in 2015 (both in biochemistry). She is now a tenured professor and works in the Department of Medical Biotechnology, Faculty of Biochemistry, Biophysics and Biotechnology, Jagiellonian University in Kraków. Currently, she investigates the molecular mechanisms of Duchenne muscular dystrophy. For many years, her work focused primarily on vascular biology, with a particular interest in angiogenesis, inflammation, and oxidative stress. Prof. Łoboda was awarded several prestigious awards, for example the L’Oreal Award for Women in Science (Poland edition) and the POLITYKA scholarship ‘Stay with us’ for young and talented researchers. She is the section editor of the Acta Biochimica Polonica journal, the co-editor of special issues of Cells and Biomolecules journals and the co-author of around 80 papers indexed in PubMed and several book chapters (h-index – 31, total citations – more than 4,400).


Danila Potyagaylo

EPIQure GmbH, Nuremberg, Germany

Research scientist with R&D expertise on computational cardiology and electrophysiology. He obtained his PhD on the forward and inverse problems of ECG from Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (Germany) in 2016. Before founding EPIQure GmbH in 2020 he was working as research scientist at EP Solutions SA (Switzerland) in the field of ECG imaging. Being CEO of EPIQure GmbH, Danila is taking active part in development of algorithms for automatic cardiac segmentation and personalized 12-lead ECG interpretation.


Agnieszka Wnuk

Jagiellonian University in Krakow, Poland

Doctor Agnieszka Wnuk is a graduate of the Jagiellonian University in Krakow (2012). In addition to bachelor and master theses, she successfully completed postgraduate study in molecular biology at the Faculty of Biochemistry, Biophysics and Biotechnology. She accomplished doctoral studies at the Institute of Pharmacology of the Polish Academy of Sciences with PhD degree in the discipline of medical biology, in 2018. The basis of the distinguished doctoral dissertation was a series of original papers which concern the discovery of molecular, including epigenetic, mechanisms of action of a chemical UV filter – Benzophenone-3 and its possible role in the etiology of the nervous system disorders. Dr Wnuk also completed internships at: the University of Zurich (2017) that was financed by the Foundation for Polish Science, the Institute of Neuroanatomy of the RWTH University in Aachen (2019) as well as the University of Perpignan in France (2021). She was awarded by the Foundation for Polish Science with START 2018 program for outstanding young scientists at the beginning of their scientific career, and by the Medical Sciences Faculty of the Polish Academy of Sciences with the Team Award (2018). The current research interests of Dr Wnuk is related to civilization diseases, such as stroke, perinatal asphyxia and Alzheimer’s disease as well as the nervous system disorders resulting from exposures to environmental pollutants. She is an author and co-author of 31 publications that were cited 429 times (H-index 18).  Moreover, she is the principal investigator of research grants (Preludium 7, Sonata 17) and a scientific supervisor of master’s and doctoral theses.


Małgorzata Kajta

Polish Academy of Sciences in Krakow, Poland

Prof. Małgorzata Kajta is the head of the Laboratory of Neuropharmacology and Epigenetics at the Maj Institute of Pharmacology of the Polish Academy of Sciences in Krakow. She completed her master’s and doctoral studies at the Jagiellonian University, and obtained her habilitation degree in medical biology at the Institute of Pharmacology of PAS (2010). She was on scientific internships in Great Britain (London, Laboratory of the Cancer Research Campaign), the United States (Washington, Georgetown University Medical Center) and Germany (Ulm, University of Ulm; Aachen, RWTH – University Clinic). In addition, prof. Kajta was appointed by the European Commission as an expert in the 7th Framework Programme for Research and the Horizon 2020. Her achievements include an award from the Journal of Cell Sciences and the British Society for Cell Biology (University of Sussex, Brighton 1992), a scholarship from the European College of Neuropsychopharmacology: Targeted Exert Meeting on Dementia and Neurodegenerative Disorders (Vienna, 2007), and the Team Award of the Medical Sciences Faculty of the Polish Academy of Sciences (Warsaw, 2018). Initially, the main area of her research ​​interests was the neuroprotective potential of estrogens, with particular emphasis on anti-apoptotic properties. Over time, she identified new signaling pathways that act as targets for environmental pollutants in the mammalian brain. Currently, prof. Kajta focuses on specific molecular mechanisms that could enable effective pharmacotherapies of ischemic stroke and Alzheimer’s disease. Up to now, she published 72 research papers which have been cited over 1700 times (H-index 29). She also is the principal investigator of research grants and a scientific supervisor of master’s and doctoral theses.


Urszula Kozłowska

Polish Academy of Sciences in Krakow, Poland

Dr Urszula Kozłowska is a doctor in biology interested in immunological aspects of degeneration and regeneration of neural tissue and the bench-to-bedside approach of novel therapeutic strategies discovery. She is currently conducting in vitro research on the influence of psychedelics on microglia immunology and neural stem cells differentiation and the in vivo application of psilocybin in the 3xTg-AD murine model of Alzheimer Disease.


Florence Rage

Institute de Genetique Moleculaire, CNRS, Montpellier, France

I am native of Montpellier (France) and I received my PhD in Neuroscience from the University of Montpellier, I did a postdoctoral training in neuroendocrinology at the University of Portland and got a permanent position at the CNRS at the University of Montpellier.

For the past 15 years, I have been working on the molecular basis of spinal muscular atrophy (SMA). My team has used mouse cell models, motor neurons derived from human induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs), and muscle biopsies from healthy individuals or patients with SMA. We developped a relevant human NMJ on chip model first to study molecular defects occurring during SMA onset and to create platform for drug screening. Currently my group focused on understanding the molecular basis of spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) and we try to understand what could explain the high vulnerability of MN in the disease. We focused on a specific role of SMN on the RNA transport along axon. Using molecular tools, we address the question on how disruption of RNA transport and local translation along axon could impact the death of motoneurons and impairment of NMJ observed in SMA.