Sunday, June 9, 2019

Recap of the final day of the AANP meeting

by Dr. Karra Jones:

The final day of the American Association of Neuropathologists annual meeting kicked off with our fearless leader, President Dr. Matthew Frosch.  Dr. Frosch entertained us with thought experiments related to our current methods of sampling tissue and their limitations.  He suggested that newer modalities developed by the following speakers will allow for interrogation of entire volumes of tissue drastically increasing our knowledge about the brain and disease. 

Dr. Kwanghun Chung from MIT talked about rapid 3D imaging and phenotyping of large-scale tissues.  He has developed highly innovative techniques to perform brain-wide molecular phenotyping by engineering the physiochemical properties of tissues, including clinical samples. His 3D image maps of the brain were beautiful and inspiring.   

The AANP Awards Ceremony was next with awards given out for the best platform/poster presentation in multiple categories, the international travel awards, and the Diagnostic Slide Session trainee awards with smiles all around. 

After a short coffee break, Dr. Ed Boyden from MIT talked about the development and use of expansion microscopy to image cells and biomolecules throughout the brain.  His multiplexed imaging techniques create colorful and highly informative images to study the brain and other tissues, and expansion microscopy can even be used on FFPE or fresh frozen tissue. You can find out more about his techniques and even read protocols at ExpansionMicroscopy.org

Dr. Jean Augustinack from Massachusetts General Hospital then talked about high-resolution ex vivo neuroimaging with histologic validation.  Her ex vivo images of brains showed amazing resolution and had a nice correlation with histologic sections.  Video of 7 Tesla MRI ex vivo images of a whole human brain at 100 micron resolution were amazing to see and the results were similar to what can be seen with the human eye during brain cutting. 

To finish the 95th Annual Meeting of the American Association of Neuropathologists, Dr. Frosch installed the new officers, and Dr. Dan Brat, the incoming President, closed the meeting with a ceremonial tap of the gavel. 

It was an amazing and inspiring meeting, as usual.  Thanks to all the program organizers, committee members, our excellent AOE staff, and outgoing executive committee members for all of their hard work over the last year.  Next year in Monterey!

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