MaxWell User Meeting 2022 | Speakers Short Bios

2nd In-Vitro 2D & 3D Neuronal Networks Summit
MaxWell User Meeting 2022

Speakers | Short Bios

Dr. Marián Hruška-Plocháň

Polymenidou Lab, University of Zurich, Switzerland

I have a major interest in neurodegenerative diseases. My current research is focused on TDP-43 and C9orf72 ALS-associated proteinopathies. To study these diseases, I developed human neural networks, a model based on neural stem cells. This model also allows for investigation of neuroprotective potential of small molecules and immunotherapy in ALS and is perfectly suitable for HD-MEA applications.

Dr. Kenta Shimba

Jimbo Lab, University of Tokyo, Japan

Kenta Shimba has been working as an assistant professor at Professor Jimbo’s laboratory in the University Tokyo since 2018. His areas of expertise include microdevice fabrication, and evaluation of axon conduction characteristics of primary and iPS cell-derived neurons.

Prof. Dr. Nael Nadif Kasri

Radboud University Medical Centre, Netherlands

Nael Nadif Kasri did his PhD in molecular biology at the KU Leuven. After his PhD he worked as a postdoctoral researcher in neurobiology at CSHL, New York, In 2010 he he started his independent research group at the Radboudumc, where he is part of the Donders institute. The focus of his research is to understand the synaptic basis of neurodevelopmental disorders. In particular, his expertise in the generation of patient-derived neural lineages and their neurophysiological analysis at single cell and network level (MEA) is setting the stage in this novel research field.

Prof. Dr. Naihe Jing

Shanghai Institute of Biochemistry and Cell Biology, China

Dr. Jing has received Ph. D. degree in Biochemistry from Shanghai Institute of Biochemistry, Chinese Academy of Sciences in 1988. He has been a postdoctoral research fellow in The Institute of Physical and Chemical Research (RIKEN), Japan from 1989-1991, and a visiting scholar in Max Planck Institute for Biophysical Chemistry, Germany from 1996-1997. In 1991, Dr. Jing became the group leader and Associate Professor in Shanghai Institute of Biochemistry, Chinese Academy of Sciences, and was promoted to full Professor in 1995. From 2000-2019, Dr. Jing was a Principal Investigator and Group Leader in Shanghai Institute of Biochemistry and Cell Biology, Chinese Academy of Sciences. On 2020, Dr. Jing and his lab moved to Guangzhou Laboratory, Guangzhou, China. Recent 10 years, Dr. Jing has focused his research interest to understand molecular mechanisms of early embryonic development and pluripotent stem cell neural differentiation. His group established Geo-seq technology for early mouse embryos, and found lineage segregation mechanisms of three germ layer of mouse gastrula. Dr. Jing’s group also established methods to differentiate mouse and human pluripotent stem cells into different subtypes of neuronal cells, and try to explore the possibility of stem cell therapy for Alzheimer’s disease. Dr. Jing is now an Associate Editor for Journal of Molecular Cell Biology, and is in the Editorial Board of Cell Research, Open Biology, Developmental Dynamics, Gene Expression Patterns, Mechanisms of Development.

Prof. Dr. Bastian Hengerer

Boehringer Ingelheim International GmbH, Germany

Bastian Hengerer has more than 30 years experience in pharmaceutical industry. He joined Boehringer Ingelheim in Biberach, Germany in 2003, heading the preclinical Parkinson’s disease research group and now being responsible for external collaborations with academic partners with a focus on psychiatric diseases.

Prof. Dr. Janos Vörös

ETH Zurich, Switzerland

Prof. Vörös has a PhD in Biophysics from the Eötvös Loránd University in Budapest. In 1998 he came to ETH Zurich where he is now a Professor in the Institute for Biomedical Engineering of the University and ETH Zurich (Department for Information Technology and Electrical Engineering) heading the Laboratory for Biosensors and Bioelectronics since 2006.

Dr. Bruna Paulsen

Arlotta Lab, Harvard University, USA

Bruna Paulsen is a postdoc at Paola Arlotta’s lab at Harvard University. Paulsen’s research uses human brain organoids to study the molecular and cellular basis of autism. Prior to joining the Arlotta lab, Paulsen developed a new strategy to increase precise gene editing in Derrick Rossi’s lab at Harvard Medical School. During her PhD, at the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro (Brazil), she used patient derived pluripotent stem cells to reveal metabolic and molecular changes in schizophrenia.

Dr. Annina Denoth-Lippuner

Jessberger Lab, University of Zurich, Switzerland

Annina Denoth-Lippuner earned her PhD from ETH Zurich, investigating aging in budding yeast. Afterwards, she switched fields for her postdoctoral research, studying neurogenesis in the lab of Prof. Jessberger at University of Zurich. There, she developed a novel tool to investigate cell division history in mice and in human brain organoids. After a research stay in the Gage lab at the Salk Institute in La Jolla, she returned to University of Zurich, using her tool in various models of brain organoids.

Dr. Jess Sevetson

Haussler-Salama Lab, UC Santa Cruz, USA

Jess Sevetson, PhD is a postdoctoral fellow at the UC Santa Cruz Genomics Institute. She received a B.S. in Behavioral Neuroscience from Lehigh University in 2013, and a PhD in Neuroscience from Brown University in 2020. Her research interests include in vitro models of circuit-level neuroscience, as well as network changes in neurodevelopmental disorders. She an NIH IRACDA Scholar and recently received the UC Santa Cruz Chancellor’s Postdoctoral Fellowship.

Prof. Dr. Kenneth Kosik

UC Santa Barbara, USA

Kenneth S. Kosik completed a B.A. and M.A. in English literature from Case Western Reserve University in 1972 and an M.D. from the Medical College of Pennsylvania in 1976. He served as a resident in neurology at Tufts New England Medical Center and was Chief Resident there in 1980. Beginning in 1980 he held a series of academic appointments at the Harvard Medical School and achieved the rank of full professor there in 1996. He also held appointments at McLean Hospital, Brigham and Women's Hospital, the Massachusetts General Hospital and the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. In 2004, Kosik became the Harriman Professor of Neuroscience Research and Co-Director of the Neuroscience Research Institute at the University of California, Santa Barbara. He is the recipient of the 2021 Potamkin Prize for Alzheimer's disease research and is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

Dr. Manuel Schröter

Hierlemann Lab, ETH Zurich, Switzerland

Manuel Schröter is a scientist in Andreas Hierlemann’s Bioengineering laboratory at the ETH Zurich Department of Biosystems Science and Engineering. Manuel has a background in neuroscience and is particularly interested in using large-scale electrophysiology to explore human brain organoid physiology, development and disease. He did his PhD under the supervision of Ed Bullmore at the University of Cambridge.

Dr. Brett Kagan

Cortical Labs, Australia

Dr. David Pamies

Zurich Fontanellaz Lab, University of Lausanne, Switzerland

Dr. Pamies has developed a 3D human brain model derived from iPSC, called BrainSpheres. The model developed at Johns Hopkins University under NCATS funded project, part of the NIH/DARPA/FDA Human-on-a-chip, has shown multiple applications demonstrating the value of a model to assess neurotoxicity, developmental neurotoxicity, and different brain diseases. In this presentation, Dr. Pamies will explain the model and application in neurotoxicology.

Dr. Nobuyoshi Matsumoto

Ikegaya Lab, University of Tokyo, Japan

Jens Duru

Vörös Lab, ETH Zurich, Switzerland

Jens Duru obtained his Bachelor's degree in electrical engineering from Universität Kassel in Germany in 2017. He continued his postgraduate education at ETH Zürich with a Master's degree in Biomedical Engineering with a focus on Bioelectronics. Since 2019 he is a PhD student in the Laboratory of Biosensors and Bioelectronics at ETH, supervised by Prof. Janos Vörös. His current research focuses on bottom up neuroscience, with an emphasis on engineered neuronal networks on CMOS based MEAs.

Prof. Dr. Hideaki Yamamoto

Tohoku University, Japan

Hideaki Yamamoto obtained his PhD in 2009 from Waseda University. He then joined Tohoku University in 2014, where he is currently an Associate Professor at Research Institute of Electrical Communications. He is interested in how a complex network of excitable cells realize robust computation in the brain. To this end, he develops microfabrication and surface modification technologies to engineer the structure and function of neuronal networks in culture.

Xiaohan Xue

Hierlemann Lab, ETH Zurich, Switzerland

PhD student at the Bio Engineering Lab at ETH. I’m particularly interested in neural engineering and neurotechnology, especially neural interfaces and advanced imaging techniques to investigate neural activity and network modalities.

Dr. Dario Magnani

Charles River Laboratories, United Kingdom

I am currently employed as Research Leader at Charles River Discovery UK. In this role, I have led several drug discovery projects involving the use of patient derived stem cell and neurons, as well as PK/PD studies to investigate and enhance efficacy and delivery of small molecules into the brain of animal models of neurodegenerative disorders.
Previously, in academia, I have worked in many areas of neuroscience and stem cell research using patient derived stem cell neurons and glial cells.

Danny McSweeney

Pak Lab, University of Massachusetts Amherst, USA

Danny started his professional career as a clothing tailor in Washington, DC theaters. He transitioned into scientific research by first pursuing a B.S. in Biochemistry and now a Ph.D. in Molecular and Cell Biology at University of Massachusetts Amherst. Using in vitro neural differentiation methods, Danny investigates how proteins regulate human synapse formation and function and how they contribute to neurodevelopmental diseases like autism spectrum disorders and intellectual disabilities.

Dr. Katherine Czysz

FUJIFILM Cellular Dynamics, USA

Katherine Czysz has been working with stem cells-derived cells for over 13 years and obtained her PhD in stem cell differentiation from King’s College London. She later became a Principal Scientist in stem cell differentiation at Takeda Pharmaceutical Company Japan. For the last 4 years she has been working as Sr. Field Application Scientist at Fujifilm Cellular Dynamics and developed an extensive experience in adapting stem cell-derived models on MEA for measuring seizurogenicity of compounds.

Dr. Maria Sundberg

Sahin Lab, Boston Children’s Hospital, USA

Maria Sundberg is an experienced scientist with a background in stem cell science and neurobiology. Her current focus is on modeling neurodevelopmental and psychiatric disorders with patient derived iPS cells. Dr. Sundberg has received her PhD from the University of Tampere in Finland. Since 2014 Sundberg has been working in the Boston Children’s Hospital, Department of Neurology, Harvard Medical School. During this time, she has developed and published various cell culturing methods to study patient iPSC derived neurons in different neurodevelopmental disorders.

Dr. Tal Sharf

Kosik Lab, UC Santa Barbara, USA

Utilizing techniques at the intersection of physical science and biology, I am developing new techniques to investigate neural circuitry utilizing human brain organoids with the aim to uncover general rules to explain how they malfunction with disease and mental illness.


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