Consortium Members Attending Forthcoming Meeting
Dr. Douglas Anderson, Foundation Trustee and Director of Research Programs, first presented the concept that there was likely a genetic basis for TN at the 2004 TNA National Conference in Orlando. He always found it odd that the anatomy of compressed nerves/lesions were seen in a significant number of individuals but only a few had TN. He always harbored the idea of identifying a genetic profile in TN patients that would lead to ending the painful condition. Anderson says “If there is a history of a member of your family having TN, other members of your family could be screened and hopefully the condition could be prevented by having the genetic pattern altered so the pain will not develop.” Dr. Douglas Anderson is the former Chairman of the Department of Neuroscience at The University of Florida School of Medicine, and former Director of the McKnight Brain Institute.
Dr. Allan Basbaum is Professor and Chairman of the Department of Anatomy at the University of California San Francisco. As a neurobiologist, his work in understanding pain as a disease is recognized world-wide. An expert on the use of neural stem cells to stop Neuropathic pain in animals has been rewarded by long term funding of his research by NIH. He believes that he has proven in his laboratory that he can fix damaged nerves and will have great consequences for nerve diseases including TN and related neuropathic pains, phantom nerve pains and nerves damaged by chemotherapy.
Dr. Marshall Devor is Chairman of The Cell and Developmental Biology Institute at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Israel. The award winning scientist has had an outstanding career in pain research. He has contributed a remarkable body of research, authoring several hundred papers over 40 years and has been described as one of those “who view excellence as a way of life and the fulfillment of human potential as essential to creating a better world for future generations.”
Dr. Kim Burchiel is the Chairman of the Department of Neurological Surgery at the Oregon Health and Science University in Portland, Oregon. A successful researcher, he has been a national leader in the treatment of orofacial pains including TN. The first step of the research project, phenotyping and DNA collection, will be the responsibility of Professor Burchiel at OHSU. He is a leading authority in the phenotyping of facial pain conditions and author of the most widely accepted TN classification scheme. Dr. Burchiel has said: “this research project could be the most important pain study ever attempted” and he is very hopeful that it will lead to a cure for TN and related neuropathic pain.
Dr. Ze’ev Seltzer, Professor of Genetics at The University of Toronto, Canada is also an award winning scientist. He has dedicated his career to the study of pain. Seltzer says “ I am looking forward to be a Co-Principal Investigator in the TN project, bringing 35 years of studying the neurobiology of pain.” Having had many competitive grants and honors he has an outstanding track record of productivity in the field of pain and pain genetics. Seltzer also says “The goal to find a cure is achievable...our best salvation may come from genetics”.
Dr. Joanna Zakrzewska of London England is the International Research Coordinator for The Facial Pain Research Foundation. She is also the Director of the largest oral-facial pain clinic in the United Kingdom...Both a Medical Doctor and a Dentist...She is known world-wide as "Dr.Zak", the acclaimed facial pain doctor in the world.
Dr. Andrew Ahn is both a neurologist and a neuroscientist. Along with Dr. Notterpek he has been treating mice with new pharmaceutical molecules designed to halt nerve deterioration and reducing pain stimuli. He has also begun a new research program imaging the pain pathways of the brain which will hopefully lead to new processes for ending pain.
Dr. Lucia Notterpek Chairs the Department of Neuroscience at the University of Florida School of Medicine...Dr. Notterpek is a world expert on Myelin and is developing strategies to cure nerve diseases. Currently, Notterpek seeks to figure out how the PMP22 gene normally works to help produce myelin, and what happens in disease conditions to cause this gene to get stuck in nerve cells rather than traveling to the myelin sheath where it is needed. She refers to this problem as “mistrafficking or abnormal expression of genes, like a traffic jam in part of the nervous system.”
Dr. Scott Diehl is a Professor in the Department of Oral Biology and Director of the Center for Pharmacogenomics and Complex Disease Research at the New Jersey Dental School of University of Medicine and Dentistry New Jersey. He understands and researches the genetic basis for diseases and is considered a world expert. Most of his studies have focused directly on human patients.