Dr. med. univ. Elisabeth Binder, Max Planck Institute of Psychiatry, München
Elisabeth Binder studied medicine at the University of Vienna and did a PhD in Neuroscience at Emory University, Atlanta, GA, USA. Since 2004 she worked as Assistant Professor in the Departments of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences and Human Genetics at Emory University School of Medicine. Since 2007 she is a research group leader at the Max Planck Institute of Psychiatry and is currently the managing director of Max Planck Institute of Psychiatry in Munich, Germany. The main focus of her work lies on stress-related psychiatric disorders. She is investigating molecular, cellular and systemic changes that occur with the development of psychiatric symptoms after stress or with resilience. Mental health disorders are among the most devastating in terms of human suffering, and some of the most difficult to quantify and address. Therefore, the overarching aim of Binder´s research is to contribute to a new, biology-based taxonomy of psychiatric diseases and to develop treatments and preventive strategies.
Dr. Sakyasingha Dasgupta, Ascent Robotics, Inc., Japan
Sakyasingha Dasgupta received his Masters in Artificial Intelligence, specialising in Machine Learning, from the University of Edinburgh, U.K., and his doctoral degree (Dr. rer. nat) in Physics of complex systems from the University of Goettingen, Germany. His doctoral thesis focused on temporal memory processing in the brain and its computational models with recurrent neural networks. An ongoing theme of his research has been towards bringing synergy between neuroscience and artificial intelligence. His studies have been applied on various neuro-robotic systems to enable memory guided behaviors, adaptive locomotion and decision making. He has been a research scientist at RIKEN Brain Science Institute in Japan, a software developer at Microsoft, and a senior research scientist in Embodied Cognition at IBM Research - Tokyo, leading the team on the Internet of Things (IoT) and deep learning focused on closed-loop decision-making in artificial agents. In recent times, he has been the head of research at LeapMind, Inc., where he and his team have been working on bringing deep learning capabilities to edge devices. Most recently he has taken up the role of Chief Scientific Officer at Ascent Robotics, Inc., focusing on building truly intelligent agents.
Prof. Thomas Knöpfel, Department of Medicine, Imperial College London
Thomas Knöpfel is a professor and Chair of Optogenetics and Circuit Neurosciences at Imperial College London, Division of Brain Sciences. In 1998, he joined the foundation of the RIKEN Brain Science Institute in Japan, where he contributed to the development of RIKEN BSI to the renowned institute that it is today. He founded his lab at RIKEN with the vision of combining genetics and light-based methods for the study of neuronal circuit dynamics. One of the key challenges in current neurosciences is to understand how the brain generates behavior and cognition out of the collective electrical activity of cortical nerve cells. Prof. Knöpfel´s research focuses on bridging the gap between our understanding of signals in single neurons and of network theories. Knöpfel´s group is developing and applying innovative optical imaging techniques in the cerebellar and cerebral cortex in order to understand the principles of the spatio-temporal information flow.
Prof. Nancy Ip, Hong Kong University of Science and Technology
Nancy Ip received her PhD degree in Pharmacology from Harvard Medical School, and is currently the Dean of Science, The Morningside Professor of Life Science, and Director of the State Key Laboratory of Molecular Neuroscience at The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST). She is well-known for her seminal discoveries in the biology of neurotrophic factors, which are proteins that promote the survival, development and maintenance of neurons in the nervous system. She has made important contributions towards understanding the molecular mechanisms underlying brain development and synaptic plasticity, and their dysregulation in neurological disorders. In recognition of her excellent achievements in science and biotechnology, Nancy Ip has received numerous awards and honors, including the National Natural Science Awards, China’s highest honor in the natural sciences, and the Chevalier de l’Ordre National du Mérite, France.