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Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Falling Walls Conference 2014: Scientists heads to Berlin

Over 20 renowned scientists have confirmed participation in the forthcoming Falling Walls Conference 2014, slated for November 9 in Berlin, reports NaijaAgroNet.

Most of the speakers, organisers say already confirmed their participation.

One of the scientists, NaijaAgroNet was told expected to thrill the conference is the bioengineer and psychiatrist Karl Deisseroth (Stanford University) who is one of the founders of optogenetics, a method through which genetically modified cells, which could be selectively activated and deactivated using light signals.

“Applied to neuroscientific research, Deisseroth’s process provides a new and highly detailed view of brain activity and a valuable insight into neurological diseases such as Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and depression,” the organisers said in a press statement made available to NaijaAgroNet by Lucie Menz of Falling Walls Foundation gGmbH.

After promising developments in recent years, immunotherapy is offering new hope in the fight against cancer. Novel approaches successfully stimulate the body’s own immune system in such a way that it can break through a tumour’s local protective barrier, detect cancer cells and finally destroy them. Suzanne Topalian from the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine is one of the leaders in this field of research and will be speaking at the Falling Walls Conference about her studies, which have substantially contributed to the development of new therapeutic applications.

Christof Koch, Chief Scientific Officer at the Allen Institute for Brain Science in Seattle is world-renowned for researching one of the most controversial problems in neuroscience – the question of the physical basis of human consciousness. Based on information theory – and using new techniques and imaging technologies to track the activity of individual brain cells – Koch is attempting to unveil the mystery of consciousness by scientific explanation and measurement.

The Falling Walls Conference was first held in 2009 to mark the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall and has now developed into a highly acclaimed platform for international research. The conference is supported by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research, the Helmholtz Association, the Robert Bosch Stiftung and numerous other academic institutions, foundations and companies.

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