A Neurophysiologist’s Guide to SfN18
Neuroscience 2018, the Society for Neuroscience’s (SfN) main meeting is fast approaching. Attended by over 30,000 delegates, with 9 featured lectures, 15 special lectures and over 14,000 abstracts submitted, there is so much science to see and discuss, it is easy to get overwhelmed and lost among the throng.
Cedric Faure, application scientist and neurophysiology expert gives his hints and tips for how to get the most out of this year’s meeting, including which sessions to attend if you are a neurophysiologist.
Which oral/talk sessions are you most excited about attending?
Actually, some of the sessions I am most excited to attend are the pre-conference sessions. If you are in town on Friday 1 or Saturday 2, November, and are an early riser, there are some fantastic opportunities to hear from great researchers in the meet-the-expert pre-conference sessions. Such as:
Saturday November 2, SESSION SPC07 – Meet-the-Expert, Session 1: Camilla Bellone – My Personal Journey From Synapse to Circuit and Behavior
I’m excited for this talk because it really fits with the philosophy of physiologists as we try to understand the brain from synapses to circuits, in freely-behaving animals.
Saturday November 2, SESSION SPC10 – Meet-the-Expert, Session 1: Timothy Harris – High Channel Count Electrophysiology, Neuropixels, and Beyond: Where Can Technology Take Us?
‘Neuropixels’ was the buzzword at last year’s SfN meeting. With around 900 recording channels on a shaft that is the fraction the width of a human hair, these are revolutionary electrodes. I’m excited to hear how researchers have employed them in their research. And it will be great to hear from their inventor, Dr Tim Harris, himself.
Which poster sessions do you recommend checking out?
From a neurophysiological perspective there is some fantastic science being discussed at these sessions…
Monday, November 5, Physiological Methods: Electrophysiology: Electrode Arrays I. 13:00 – 17:00
Wednesday, November 7, Physiological Methods: Electrophysiology: Electrode Arrays II. 08:00 – 12:00
Sunday, November 4, Physiological Methods: Electrophysiology: Neural Networks. 08:00 – 12:00
Sunday, November 4, Physiological Methods: Optogenetics I & II. 08:00 – 12:00 and 13:00 – 17:00
Which sessions should I attend to hear about the latest technological advances in neurophysiology?
I think this nanosymposium composed of 15 minute talks about the different technologies being developed and employed to look at brain function should be super interesting and worth checking out…
Tuesday November 6. Nanosymposium. 548. Physiological Methods: Electrophysiology: Stimulating Neurons and Electrode Arrays
Another session that should be of interest for neurophysiologists is the poster session on Tuesday November 6, Tools and Techniques for Manipulation of Neurons and Circuits 08:00-12:00
Which booths should I visit to see the latest developments in neurophysiological equipment?
I hope that everyone comes by our booth MCI-Neuroscience (Booth Number: 3613). We will be showcasing a lot of our products including our Pryer lens, a powerful imaging lens that enables deep brain tissue imaging in vivo.
Also, we will be showcasing a prototype of the CleverExcite, our new multiphoton imaging system. It’s much smaller than conventional multiphoton systems, the whole set up can fit on an air table less than a square-meter in size, making it ideal for labs without much space. It is also modular and adaptable, the perfect solution for neuroscience labs that want to do in vitro slice recordings and in vivo imaging on the same rig.
Combining the Pryer lens with the CleverExcite system offers unparalleled insight into neuronal circuit activity. And I hope neurophysiologists will come by our booth to check out the set up.
Any other useful advice?
Other practical advice would be: carry water. Conferences are thirsty work and you’re going to be meeting and talking to a lot of people. Also, consider using the Meeting Planner on the conference website, you don’t want to miss any sessions. And, to stay on top what’s going on via social media, follow the hashtag #SfN18