Highlights from the Second Annual Symposium on Regenerative Rehabilitation
A team of McGowan Institute for Regenerative Medicine affiliated faculty members and the Institute’s director recently coordinated and celebrated the 2nd Annual Symposium on Regenerative Rehabilitation held on November 12 & 13, 2012, at the University Club in the Oakland neighborhood of Pittsburgh. The event attracted approximately 120 participants – an international audience comprised of scientists, educators, rehabilitation clinicians, and students/ trainees. The overall objective of this symposium series is to highlight and provide evidence for the synergistic relationship between regenerative medicine and rehabilitation, and to promote cross-fertilization between these two fields.
Given the importance of mechanotransduction to dictate molecular, cellular, and tissue responses, we believe the time is right to begin to understand better the potential synergy between rehabilitation and biological therapies. Such an understanding should be rooted in basic science collaborative investigations at the early stages of technology conceptualization and development, so that the transition to the clinic may be smooth and efficient. Unfortunately, few opportunities are available to bring together scientists and clinicians working in these two currently disparate fields. This symposium, the only one of its kind, crosses disciplinary boundaries to create a unique forum where stakeholders in the field of regenerative medicine will interact with rehabilitation clinicians and scientists to discuss the current and future landscape of the field.
McGowan Institute for Regenerative Medicine affiliated faculty member Fabrisia Ambrosio, PhD, MPT, faculty member in the Department of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation at the University of Pittsburgh with secondary appointments in the Departments of Physical Therapy, Orthopaedic Surgery, and Microbiology and Molecular Genetics at the University of Pittsburgh, spearheaded the planning of this event along with her co-course directors:
- McGowan Institute for Regenerative Medicine affiliated faculty member Michael Boninger, MD, professor and chair of the Department of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation, University of Pittsburgh, associate dean of Medical Student Research in the School of Medicine, as well as the director of the University of Pittsburgh Model Center on Spinal Cord Injury,
- McGowan Institute for Regenerative Medicine affiliated faculty member Anthony Delitto, PhD, PT, FAPTA, professor and associate dean for research in the School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences at the University of Pittsburgh, director of research, Comprehensive Spine Center at UPMC, as well as vice president for Education and Research Centers for Rehabilitation Services,
- Thomas A. Rando, MD, PhD, professor, Department of Neurology and Neurological Sciences, Stanford University School of Medicine, director, The Glenn Laboratories for the Biology of Aging, Stanford University School of Medicine, director, Center for Tissue Regeneration, Repair, and Restoration, RR&D Center of Excellence, VA Palo Alto Health Care System, chief, Neurology Service, VA Palo Alto Health Care System, deputy director, Stanford Center on Longevity (SCL), Stanford University, and
- McGowan Institute for Regenerative Medicine director William R. Wagner, PhD, professor of Surgery, Bioengineering and Chemical Engineering at the University of Pittsburgh, director of Thrombosis Research for the Artificial Heart and Lung Program, and deputy director of the NSF Engineering Research Center on “Revolutionizing Metallic Biomaterials.”
The agenda for this year’s Symposium included a robust line-up of speakers including a keynote session by Scott Rodeo, MD, a clinician-scientist at Hospital for Special Surgery, with appointments in the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery and the Research Department. Dr. Rodeo is also Associate Team Physician for the New York Giants and has served as Team Physician for the US Olympic Swim Team in 2004, 2008, and 2012. Dr. Rodeo’s presentation, “A Clinician-Scientist’s Perspective on Tissue Regeneration for Soft Tissue Repair: Focus on Sports Injuries,” provided insight into regenerative rehabilitation in the field of sports medicine.
Also of note was a signature seminar, “Regenerative Rehabilitation in Military Medicine,” chaired by Dr. Rando which included presentations by experts as well as a thought-provoking panel discussion.
This year, thanks to a generous donation by The Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD), the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMS), and National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS), 20 attendees, 17 national and 3 international, received travel grants to attend the event.
Only a couple of weeks out from this year’s event, the beginning stages of planning for next year have begun. If you have any suggestions for programming or would like to be added to the distribution list to receive updates regarding the upcoming event, please contact Katherine Lewis at: email@example.com.