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NBH Initiative Presents 2014 Neuroscience, Behavior & Health Research Forum

Emanuel DiCicco-Bloom, M.DEmanuel DiCicco-Bloom, M.D.


The University of Vermont’s Annual Neuroscience, Behavior, and Health (NBH) Research Forum took place January 24 to 25, 2014 in the Livak Ballroom in UVM’s Davis Center. The event was co-sponsored by the UVM NBH Initiative and the Vermont Chapter of the Society for Neuroscience (SfN), with additional support from the UVM Neuroscience COBRE, UVM Neuroscience Graduate Program, Med Associates, Inc., MBF Bioscience, and Catamount Research and Development, Inc.

Designed to promote cross‐disciplinary research and collaboration, the NBH Research Forum highlights scientific investigations on behavior and its underlying neurobiology as it relates to human health, disease, and disability.

On Friday, January 24, the Forum kicked off with a keynote presentation by Emanuel DiCicco-Bloom, M.D., professor of neuroscience and cell biology at Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School. He delivered a lecture, titled “Autism Spectrum Disorders: Tales from the Mouse,” following introductory remarks from Vermont SfN President George Wellman, Ph.D., professor of pharmacology.

Activities on Saturday, January 25, which took place from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., began with introductory remarks from NBH Initiative Director Rae Nishi, Ph.D., professor of neurological sciences, and included three scientific poster sessions delivered by faculty members and graduate students. More than170 people attended the forum, including 44 faculty members, 45 graduate students, and 27 undergraduate students. Participants from Dartmouth College, McGill University and HEC Montreal, in addition to UVM, were in attendance. In an effort to promote public outreach, students from area high schools served as judges at the event, evaluating graduate students’ ability to explain their research clearly to a non‐neuroscientist.

About the Neuroscience, Behavior and Health Initiative
The Neuroscience, Behavior and Health (NBH) Initiative focuses on understanding the development and fundamental basis of human behaviors that are linked to health and disease — a research challenge that spans fields from molecular biology and genetics to behavior, rehabilitation, and education. Research in NBH is directed towards studying preventable diseases and disabilities, informing policies, and strategic investments that create healthier communities and decrease costs of treatment and mitigation. UVM NBH director is Rae Nishi, Ph.D., professor of neurological sciences. Steering Committee members include Vice Chair Mark Bouton, Ph.D., professor of psychology; Sharon Henry, Ph.D., professor of rehabilitation and movement science; Brian Flynn, Ph.D., professor emeritus of family medicine; Timothy Stickle. Ph.D., associate professor of psychology; Haley Woodside-Jiron, Ph.D., associate professor of education; and Hugh Garavan, Ph.D., associate professor of psychiatry and psychology. University liaisons include: Cindy Forehand, Ph.D., interim dean, Graduate College, and professor of neurological sciences; Kerry Swift, M.S., technology licensing officer, Office of Technology Commercialization; and Clarence Davis, director of state relations, Office of Federal, State and Community Relations.