The 13th International Conference on Brain Energy Metabolism (ICBEM): How Metabolism Dictates Neurotransmission, Function and Behavior will be held on March 7-10, 2018, at the Centro de Estudios Cientficos CECs, Valdivia, Chile. The field of brain energy metabolism is moving fast, propelled by new findings and rapidly developing new technologies that allow us to ask questions that could not be asked before about metabolism at cellular and subcellular levels in vitro and in vivo. Powerful imaging, genetic and biochemical tools are being used to characterize metabolism at tissue and cellular levels. Alterations in energy metabolism are a key underlying feature in stroke, epilepsy and in most, if not all, neurodegenerative diseases. However, little is known regarding causes and mechanisms, and interactions between poorly-understood, critical aspects of energy metabolism, a knowledge gap partly explained by the metabolic heterogeneity of brain tissue. The goal of 13th ICBEM meeting, which will be held for the first time in South America, is to bring together leading experts in these emerging techniques and researchers in clinical and basic neuroscience, physiology and learning and behavior who would not otherwise meet, and to serve as a driving force for cutting-edge discussions, formulation of incisive experiments, and for fostering collaborations that open novel areas of exploration of energy metabolism that underlie and contribute to brain diseases. This goal will be achieved by a small, focused conference (100-120 attendees), that includes a keynote talk on the hot subject of aerobic glycolysis and 24 invited speakers in eight scientific sessions. The conference brings together experts as well as students, postdocs and young investigators in a highly interactive forum with 33% of the meeting time allocated for discussion. Such interaction is needed to facilitate progress in this field of research and there are no other meetings of this nature that can facilitate this kind of interaction. Sessions address how mitochondrial biology and trafficking influence mitochondrial metabolism; neuroglial intercellular communication and tissue plasticity; oxygen and metabolite dynamics and sensing by neurons and glial cells; and the novel notion that energy is not just a permissive factor but is a driver for neurotransmission, memory processing and behavior. Student-fellow presentations are a key aspect of the meeting and an effective tool to help bring a new generation of scientists into our community and foster their maturation by inclusion as speakers and session co-chairs. Four young investigators are invited speakers, 20 students/postdocs will be awarded travel stipends based on competitive ranking of abstracts and geographic distribution, and ten students/postdocs selected by an evaluation committee will present short talks. This meeting will provide an outstanding venue for cross disciplinary interactions, i.e. between imaging specialists, basic neuroscientists and clinicians. Formal presentations and informal discussions are highlights of this unique conference series that fosters long-term scientific interactions to address emerging issues, and publishes a peer-reviewed special issue.
The major goal of this conference is to serve as a driving force for cutting-edge discussions and formulation of experiments and collaborations that open new areas of exploration of energy metabolism that underlie neurotransmission and behavior and contribute to brain diseases. This small focused conference centers on brain energy metabolism and brings together the world?s experts, students and fellows to participate in formal presentations and informal discussions which are a highlight of the meeting, and continues the strong emphasis on participation by women, young investigators, students and postdoctoral fellows. This unique, ?investigator initiated? conference series has a long history with strong conceptual, experimental, and collaborative contributions to controversial areas in the field and to development of new approaches to address difficult issues that underlie neurological diseases.