June 9, 2000
Volume XXXIII, No. 23

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World's brain mapping scientists to convene in San Antonio

"HBM 2000," the sixth annual meeting of the Organization for Human Brain Mapping, will be held June 13-16 at San Antonio's Municipal Auditorium. The conference is hosted this year by the Research Imaging Center, a Health Science Center research facility devoted to the science of brain mapping.

In advance of HBM 2000, a free program for the public begins at 7 p.m. Sunday, June 11, at the San Antonio Public Library Auditorium, 600 Soledad Plaza. Two distinguished visiting scientists, from Harvard and UCLA, will discuss "Mapping the Brain in Health and Disease" and "Imaging: The Working Brain." High school and university educators are invited to attend these lectures and to view scientific poster presentations throughout the week at Municipal Auditorium. The public also is invited to a symphonic concert, to be performed by the San Antonio Symphony's San Antonio Brass, at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, June 14, at Municipal Auditorium. Joseph Wiley and Sons, Publishers, is sponsoring the free concert.
Brain map graphic

"HBM 2000 will bring more than a thousand scientists from the international brain mapping community to Texas," said Dr. Peter T. Fox, director of the Research Imaging Center and professor of medicine, psychiatry and radiology at UTHSC. The visiting scientists will consider nearly a thousand scientific abstracts in 12 categories, including attention, memory, cognition, emotion, language, neurological disorders, psychiatric disorders, perception and physiology. "Brain mapping" involves functional and structural assessment of the brain, with an emphasis on non-invasive measurements.

"This annual conference is a direct expression of the needs of the brain mapping scientific community," Dr. Fox said. "The Organization for Human Brain Mapping was created in 1995 specifically for the purpose of providing a venue for dissemination of findings and interactions among scientists in this burgeoning field."

Brain mapping was in its infancy in the early 1980s. Today, researchers in this field are studying diseases of the brain and associated syndromes such as epilepsy, stuttering, depression, anxiety, head trauma, chromosome disorders, and cancer and its treatments.

Growing numbers of physicians are incorporating brain mapping studies and findings into their clinical practice. "Clinical disciplines involved in human brain mapping include neurology, psychiatry, neurosurgery, neuropsychology, basic neuroscience and psychology, as well as Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI), Positron Emission Tomography (PET), Electroencephalography (EEG), Magnetoencephalography (MEG) and optical imaging," Dr. Fox said.

For more information, visit the HBM 2000 Web pages at http://ric.uthscsa.edu/hbm2000/.