Conference 2017 Speakers
Neuroscience and Research
Professor Andrew Schwartz
University of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA
Distinguished Professor of Neurobiology
Chair in Systems Neuroscience
Dr. Andrew Schwartz is a Professor of Neurobiology at the University of Pittsburgh. Dr.
Schwartz received his PhD from the University of Minnesota in 1984 with a thesis entitled
“Activity in the Deep Cerebellar Nuclei during Normal and Perturbed Locomotion.” He then
went on to a postdoctoral fellowship at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine. While there,
Dr. Schwartz was instrumental in developing the basis for three-dimensional trajectory
representation in the motor cortex.
In 1988, Dr. Schwartz began his independent research career at the Barrow Neurological Institute in Phoenix. There, he developed a paradigm to explore the continuous cortical signals generated throughout volitional arm movements. This was done by using monkeys trained to draw shapes while recording single- cell activity from their motor cortices.
After developing the ability to capture a high fidelity representation of movement intention from the motor cortex, Dr. Schwartz teamed up with engineering colleagues at Arizona State University to develop cortical neural prosthetics. The work has progressed to the point that monkeys can now use these recorded signals to control motorized arm prostheses to reach out and grasp a piece of food and return it to the mouth.
In addition to the prosthetics work, he has continued to utilize the neural trajectory representation to better understand the transformation from intended to actual movement using motor illusions in a virtual reality environment.
Dr. Schwartz is a member of the Society for Neuroscience, the Institute of Physics, and the International Psychophysical Society. He has received numerous awards for his pioneering research efforts. Most recently he received the Carnegie Science Award for Life Sciences (2010), the International Brain Mapping & Intraoperative Surgical Planning Society Pioneer in Medicine Award (2010), the Popular Mechanics Breakthrough Award (2012), and the Clinical Research Forum Research Achievement Award (2013).
Professor Foo Yew Liew
University of Glasgow, Glasgow, UK
Distinguished Professor in Immunology
After graduating in chemistry at Monash University Foo Yew (Eddy) Liew took a PhD in
Immunology with Gordon Ada at the John Curtin School of Medical Research, ANU.
In 1991 he became the Gardiner Chair and Head of the Department of Immunology, Glasgow
University. He was the founding Director of the Glasgow Biomedical Research Centre. He was
elected Fellow of the Royal Society in 2012. Professor Liew’s main research interest has been the
role of CD4+ T cell subsets, nitric oxide and cytokines in infection and inflammation.
Foo Yew ‘Eddy’ Liew’s research in immunology has revealed new regulatory pathways in the
body’s defences against infection. This has clarified how the body strikes a balance between
destroying infectious agents and avoiding damage to its own tissues, and opened the way to new
therapies for conditions including rheumatoid arthritis and sepsis.
Eddy was the first to show that nitric oxide (NO) — a gas with a wide range of physiological roles — kills pathogens such as bacteria that have been engulfed by cells of the immune system. Eddy has also found that NO regulates the differentiation of other classes of immune cell, and extended the inventory and understanding of cytokines — signalling molecules that mediate infection and inflammation.
Born in the 1950s to Chinese migrant parents in Malaysia, trained in Australia and based in Glasgow, Scotland, since 1991, Eddy is a leading member of the immunological community across Europe, Asia and the Americas.
Professor Alastair Compston
University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK
Professor Emeritus of Neurology
Alastair Compston is Professor Emeritus of neurology at the University of Cambridge.
He qualified from Middlesex Hospital Medical School in 1971 and trained in neurology at
the National Hospital, Queen Square. He was formerly Professor of neurology at the
University of Wales, President of the European Neurological Society and the Association
of British Neurologists, and editor of Brain.
Alastair Compston is the author of more than 800 publications on the scientific basis and
history of clinical neuroscience. His research focuses on the clinical science of human
demyelinating disease including the discovery of genetic risk factors for multiple sclerosis
and the introduction of Alemtuzumab as a highly effective and durable treatment for the
disease. This work has been recognised by research prizes including the Charcot Award;
the K-J Zülch Prize; the World Federation of Neurology Medal; the John Dystel Prize;
the Richard and Mary Cave Award of the Multiple Sclerosis Society; the Hughlings
Jackson Medal; the Galen Medal; and the Association of British Neurologists Medal.
Alastair Compston has been appointed Commander of the British Empire. He is a Fellow
of the Academy of Medical Sciences; and Foreign Member of the National Academy of
Sciences of Germany and the National Academy of Medicine of the USA.
Professor Rudolf Fahlbusch
International Neuroscience Institute, Hannover, Germany
Director of the Center for Endocrine Neurosurgery,
International Neuroscience Institute, Hannover
Professor Rudolf Fahlbusch is the Director of the Centre for Endocrine Neurosurgery at the
International Neuroscience Institute, Hannover. In 1980, he became a Professor of Neurosurgery
and in 1982 he chaired the Department of Neurological Surgery at the University of Erlangen
Nuremberg, an internationally renowned facility.
He has clinical and research interests in pituitary surgery (particularly in pituitary tumours) and intra
surgical neurophysiological monitoring. At the University of Erlangen-Nürnberg, Professor Fahlbusch
has created a ‘new-age’ operating theatre: featuring neuro-navigation systems and intraoperative
magnetic resonance tomography, as well as a multi-disciplinary team coming together to form one
of the most modern and unique neuroscience centres in the world.
Professor Fahlbusch is the President of the German Academy of Neurosurgery and the Academia
Eurasiana Neurochirurgica. He is a council member of the group Medical Technologies and serves
on the editorial boards for journals including Neurosurgery, The Pituitary and Acta Neurochirurgica.
He has previously been a member of seven other Neurosurgical societies and is an honorary member of six neurosurgical societies.
Professor Tipu Aziz
University of Oxford, Oxford, UK
Professor of Neurosurgery
Professor Aziz is one of the world’s leading neurosurgeons both in research and clinical practice. Professor
Aziz founded Oxford functional neurosurgery in 1993. At that time Oxford was virtually the only UK centre
with such a service. In clinical surgery, he established Oxford as a major international centre for surgery for
movement disorders when such surgery did not exist in the UK.
Prof. Aziz trains surgeons from the UK and abroad in functional and stereotactic surgery for movement
disorders. He has established local movement disorder services, including surgery at Charing Cross
Hospital, London; Karachi, Pakistan; Brisbane, Australia; Treviso, Italy; Iceland; and Singapore. He advises
the UK department of Health via the NSGAG forum on providing functional surgery at nationally approved
His primate work was central to confirming the subthalamic nucleus as a possible surgical target for deep
brain stimulation in Parkinson’s disease and more recently the pedunculopontine nucleus. OFN is currently
one of the busiest centres for such surgery in the UK and academically very productive.
Research interests are the role of the upper brain stem in the control of movement, the clinical neurophysiology of movement disorders and neuropathic pain and autonomic responses to deep brain stimulation, use of MR and MEG imaging in functional neurosurgery.
Professor Aziz was recently voted one of the world’s foremost neurosurgeons both in lab-based research and in clinical surgery.
Professor Andre Grotenhuis
Radboud University Nijmegen Medical Centre, Nijmegen,
Clinical Professor of Neurosurgery
Past President of the European Association of Neurological Societies
The current president of the European Association of Neurosurgical Societies (EANS), Professor Grotenhuis
is a member of seven neurosurgical associations. Professor Grotenhuis pioneered modern minimally invasive
neurosurgical and neuroendoscopical techniques, beginning with his PhD thesis studying endoscopic third
ventriculostomy in the treatment of hydrocephalus. He received a Lifetime Achievement Award (2011) due to
his accomplishments in the field of minimally invasive neurosurgery. He also received the Vilhelm Magnus's
medal of the Scandinavian Neurosurgical Association (2014).
After completing his neurosurgical residency at Academisches Lehrkrankenhaus Stadtische Kliniken in
Duisburg, Germany, Professor Andre Grotenhuis completed fellowships in Austria, Sweden and Canada.
Since then, he has gone on to become a Senior Lecturer at the Medical School of the University of Nijmegen
and Associate Professor of Neurosurgery at the University Hospital St. Radboud.
He co-founded the journal, ‘Minimally Invasive Neurosurgery,’ and has authored nearly one hundred
peer-reviewed scientific publications (and counting). His department is a world leader in the development of
minimally invasive techniques in neurosurgery.