Pre-Conference Workshops

Workshop A: The Biology of the BBB - Disease &
Drug Delivery

9.00-12.00 | Tuesday, August 13

The greatest challenge for many CNS drug developers is enabling drugs to cross the BBB. Recent studies show that the BBB is affected by brain disorders and itself plays a role in causing brain disease. Therefore, understanding BBB function is critical for devising new therapeutic strategies to enhance brain drug delivery, improve brain protection, and treat brain disorders.

By attending this workshop, you will:

  • Learn about the role of the BBB in health and disease
  • Evaluate which conditions we require drug access to the
  • CNS and for which of these the BBB is compromised
  • Understand how the disorders effect on the BBB may affect therapeutics crossing it

Workshop Leader:

Bjoern Bauer - Uni of Kentucky

Björn Bauer
Associate Professor
University of Kentucky

Dr. Bauer’s research focus is on the regulation of blood-brain barrier function in epilepsy, Alzheimer’s disease and brain cancer.

Workshop B: Accessing the CNS: Evaluating BBB Technologies for Drug Delivery to the CNS

12.30-3.30 | Tuesday, August 13

Following the successful discovery of a valid therapeutic target for CNS indications, drug delivery to the CNS remains a significant challenge. In addition to direct injection into the CNS, several approaches have been developed to allow therapeutics to cross the BBB.

Attend this workshop to:

  • Understand the anatomy, function and pathology of the BBB in health and CNS diseases
  • Evaluate different strategies for crossing the BBB and alternative approaches to deliver biotherapeutics, gene therapy vectors and oligonucleotides to the CNS
  • Assess the pros and cons of existing preclinical model systems used to support BBB research
  • Discuss the translational challenges and potential pitfalls in developing BBB-crossing drug delivery technologies
  • Observe lessons learned from historical and emerging clinical case studies related to BBB translational research

Workshop Leader:

Robert Bell - Pfizer

Robert Bell
Associate Research Fellow, Rare Disease Research Unit

Robert built a preclinical research lab at Pfizer focused on vascular targets in CNS disorders and drug delivery across the blood-brain barrier. He now leads the Gene Therapy Translational Sciences In Vivo Biology Group.