SFN storms the capital

We’re headed to Washington, D.C. for the Society for Neuroscience annual meeting, and hope to make your lives a little bit easier by reporting on what matters to you.

By Apoorva Mandavilli
10 November 2011 | 2 min read
This article is more than five years old.
Neuroscience—and science in general—is constantly evolving, so older articles may contain information or theories that have been reevaluated since their original publication date.

If you’ve attended the Society for Neuroscience annual meeting before — and what neuroscientist hasn’t? — you know what’s in store for you this next week: more abstracts than the human brain can absorb, more people than you thought could fit into a conference center and a relentless stream of information and interaction for five straight days.

We feel your pain.

Last year, SFARI.org was there in full force, and our four reporters published a whopping 51 short reports over the course of the conference.

The articles spanned a wide spectrum of autism-related topics, ranging from how a mouse’s environment can shape its neurons, and an exclusive report on gene expression data from the Allen Human Brain Atlas, to an early look at gene networks altered in autism brains, details of which were published months later in Nature.

We also did short video interviews with some of the best minds in the field, including Kurt Haas, who has developed a method to watch neuron development in the tadpole brain, Evan Eichler on mining genes for autism research, and Jacqueline Crawley on mice and how, sometimes, they are like men.

We heard from many of you that you valued the reports, so we’re headed to Washington, D.C. this year, and hope to make your lives a little bit easier by covering what matters to you.

I’ve attended this meeting every year for more than a decade, and each year I’ve left convinced it couldn’t become any bigger — and each year I’ve been proven wrong. I remember when the program book was one heavy tome, and when they decided it was time to break down the books by day. These days, though, it seems like even the daybooks weigh a ton.

What I’m trying to say is that, even though our preparations began weeks ago, I know we may miss some gems. So if there’s something you think we ought to cover, please do let us know. And whether you’re storming the capital with 30,000 other neuroscientists or staying in your quiet, sane lab, please tune in.

(For the Twitter devotees among you, please follow us on @SFARIautismnews for timely updates. We’ll also be using the hashtag #sfn11).

For more reports from the 2011 Society for Neuroscience annual meeting, please click here.