Researchers and clinical professionals interested in the study of encephalitis descended on London on Monday, December 4, for our annual conference.

More than 120 people from the UK, USA, Denmark the Netherlands and Indonesia joined our Scientific Advisory Panel and staff for a day of presentations and networking on topics surrounding encephalitis.

The conference ended with the UK premiere of Side Effects, a one-man play by actor Michael Milligan which looks at the day-to-day challenges facing doctors in the U.S.

Encephalitis Conference 2017

Click on the image above to see more photographs from the conference

Speaking after the conference, Dr Ava Easton, the Chief Executive of the Encephalitis Society, said:

I am extremely proud to say the Encephalitis Conference has become the go-to event for the world’s leading experts in encephalitis. It is a place where researchers and clinicians can come together to share their research and build their professional networks and relationships. Our conference is the most comprehensive event devoted entirely to encephalitis in the world and to have such a fantastic turn-out means there is an appetite for information about this devastating condition.

For the first time in its history, the Encephalitis Conference took place over a full day, and as a result, it attracted a record number of attendees and wonderful speakers keen to share their work.

William Burroughs, the author of Naked Lunch, was the inspiration behind the first keynote speech by Professor Andrew Lees, of the National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery in London, who shared details about how the writer had influenced his approach to medicine and contributed to his medical career.

The second keynote speech came from Professor Maarten Titulaer, co-director of the Academic Centre of Neuro inflammatory Disorders at the Erasmus Medical Centre in Rotterdam, who spoke about Anti-GABAbR encephalitis: status epilepticus and beyond.

Towards the end of the day, a Lifetime Achievement Award was presented to Professor Angela Vincent in tribute to her long and distinguished career in neurology and the expertise she has lent to the Encephalitis Society. A second Lifetime Achievement Award was presented to Professor Michael Kopelman for his distinguished career in Neuropsychiatry during the post conference dinner later the same evening.

Dr Tehmina Bharucha won the Johnny Sutton Travel Bursary award and used the £500 prize to cover travel costs to the American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene Conference in Baltimore, USA, where she presented some original research and to the National Institute for Health (NIH), Bethesda, USA, where she undertook some training.

Dr Adam Al-Diwani claimed the prize for Best Poster and Dr Julianne Brown won the award for Best Presentation for her talk, Should deep-sequencing be routinely used for diagnosis of encephalitis?

Meanwhile, Professor Barbara Wilson who is celebrating 10 years as The Society’s President was presented with a book about her musical hero, Bob Dylan, to commemorate the anniversary.

The following day saw key researchers come together to discuss and develop research into encephalitis and offer feedback on current and future studies into the condition.

Thank you to MacFarlanes LLP for hosting us once again and to Routledge Press, the University of Liverpool, The Health Protection Research Unit on Emerging and Zoonotic Infections, and the Autoimmune Encephalitis Alliance for their kind sponsorship of the day.

To keep up to date on the latest news and information on encephalitis research, become a professional member of Encephalitis Society. Membership is free.