15th International Workshop on Fragile X and Early-Onset Cognitive Disorders

Continuing a long, successful tradition, the

15th International Workshop on Fragile X and Other Early-Onset Cognitive Disorders

will be held in Berlin, Germany between Sunday afternoon, September 4th, and Wednesday afternoon, September 7th, 2011 at the “Harnack-House”, the historic conference centre of the Max Planck Society and its predecessor, the Kaiser Wilhelm Society.

Scope of the Workshop

Previous workshops have centered around Fra(X) syndrome and other forms of X-linked intellectual disability (ID). From the forthcoming workshop, we expect exciting new insights into the pathogenesis of Fra(X) syndrome as well as results of ongoing therapeutic trials. There will be a keynote lecture by Ben Oostra (Erasmus University, Rotterdam) on Fra(X), and other prominent players in this field including Steve Warren (Emory University, Atlanta) and Jean-Louis Mandel (IGBMC, Strasbourg) have also announced their active participation. However, in view of the growing attention for other forms of ID, we think that it is time to broaden the scope of the workshop by explicitly including autosomal dominant and recessive ID, as well as several other interesting topics.

This requires active intervention, which is at variance with the successful principle to let the interests and contributions of the attendants shape the programme of the workshops. On the other hand, we felt that given the rapid developments in this field, some re-definition of the scope of this workshop might be necessary. After having consulted several “regulars” of these meetings, we have come up with the following tentative catalogue of interesting topics. This list is not meant to be exhaustive, and it remains to be seen how many of these topics will be popular enough to justify a separate session. Still, it may be of some use as a steering instrument and a guideline for those who never attended these workshops before:

Everything you always wanted to know about Fra(X)

Novel causes of X-linked intellectual disability (XLID)

Autosomal dominant and recessive forms of ID

ID syndromes: clinical, neurological and neuro-anatomical findings

Functional studies, animal models, emerging pathways

Population-specific and epidemiological aspects

Diagnosis, carrier detection and therapy

Molecular links between cognitive and behavioral disorders

Genetic determinants of intelligence

We guess that there will be no need for a separate session on next generation sequencing (NGS) because this is now an established methodology which will be referred to repeatedly throughout the workshop. Instead, we would propose a discussion about the future of ID research and health care, maybe preceded by a few quick introductory statements to get the discussion going (volunteers are welcome); topics could include NGS and related aspects, standardization, data storage and protection, consequences for health care etc., but also “raising public awareness” and even “(global) coordination of ID research”.

For more information and registration please visit the Workshop Website