MND Connect 2018

MND Connect brought together the community, researchers and clinicians in an interactive forum to discuss MND research.

The presentations can be viewed on YouTube.
The 4th annual MND Connect meeting was held in Melbourne on the 10th of November and showcased the remarkable MND research currently being undertaken in Australia. People living with MND were invited to attend, along with friends, family, researchers and health professionals from the broader MND community. Ron Grima, who is living with MND, attended the conference with his wife, Debbie. Ron provided us with the following report:
Having only recently been diagnosed with Motor Neurone Disease, I didn’t know what to expect from the 4th MND Connect conference. From the opening address by David Ali, MND Australia President, to the closing panel discussion, I found the conference interesting, informative and enlightening.
“MND: one disease, many faces” was a theme of the conference, and Maria Nanfra highlighted this when she shared with us her amazing story from ‘a carer’s perspective’. Maria encouraged all carers to ‘take time out for yourself’; a very important message for all devoted carers.

One of the presentations I found interesting was “Breathing Life into MND”, by Professor David Berlowitz. Professor Berlowitz showed evidence of a 20-year research program tracking the effect of non-invasive ventilation (NIV) on survival. The research indicated that NIV improves overall survival by a median of 13 months.

The value of the MND Connect conference was highlighted by the diversity in the research presentations, including:
  • Cognition and behaviour and MND
  • The role of stem cells in screening drugs as potential therapies
  • Genes and the environment: The different causes of MND
  • Clinical trials update.
It was clear that those involved with MND research are all inspired to achieve one goal: to live in a world without MND. A huge thank you to MND Australia and everyone involved in putting this important conference together. A special mention to all the volunteers from MND Victoria; the Florey Institute; MND Australia CEO, Carol Birks; and Shyuan Ngo and Derik Styne from the University of Queensland.
MND Connect provides a unique opportunity for those affected by MND to learn more about MND research and care strategies. If you would like to watch the powerpoint and video presentations from MND Connect 2018, these are available below.


For details of the program, click here



Dr Susan Mathers - Opening Address - MND, One disease with many faces Maria Nanfra - A Carer's Perspective Dr Thanuja Dharmadasa - The MND jigsaw: patterns within the puzzle Associate Professor Gail Robinson - Cognition and behaviour and MND Roxanne Maule - Managing Bulbar Symptoms and advances in communication technology Professor David Berlowitz - Breathing life into MND Associate Professor Ken Rodgers - Genes and the environment: The Different Causes of MND Dr Peter Allcroft - Multidisciplinary care and palliative care  Emeritus Professor Margaret O'Connor - Voliuntary Assisted Dying Associate Professor Bradley Turner - The Role of Stem Cells in Screening Drugs as Potential Therapies Associate Professor Rob Henderson - Clinical Trials Update

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