Annual Symposia

Please note: As of March 16, 2020, all campus meetings and conferences have been canceled, due to public health concerns related to Covid-19. That includes the Annual Distinguished DIBS Lecture & Symposium. We do not yet know how long this will be in effect. Thank you in advance for your understanding.

Annual Distinguished DIBS Lecture & Symposium

DIBS holds an annual interdisciplinary symposium focused on translational brain research, alternating between clinical and basic research topics. We invite an exceptional speaker, who meets with DIBS faculty and students, reviews the accompanying poster exhibition, then gives the keynote address for the symposium. The event also includes a panel of Duke experts discussing research related to the event's theme, and a poster exhibition by graduate students, postdoctoral associates, and trainees.

  • 2021 Distinguished Lecture & Symposium: Pioneering Neuroscientist Eve Marder, PhD (date TBD)

Picture of 2020 DIBS Lecturer Eve Marder"Understanding Neural Circuits: Development, Plasticity & Function." Eve Marder, PhD, Biology, Brandeis University, will give the 2021 DIBS Distinguished Lecture during spring semester. Three Duke faculty members--Nicole Calakos, PhD, Neurology, and Fan Wang, PhD, Neurobiology, both of the School of Medicine, and Mike Tadross, PhD, Biomedical Engineering, Pratt School of Engineering--will deliver TED-style talks before Dr. Marder’s keynote presentation. The event will also feature the theme of “women in science” and Dr. Marder will be talking to junior faculty and students on this topic earlier in the day. Graduate students and postdocs are encouraged to submit posters by March 6.

Dr. Marder studies the modulation of neural networks. The Marder lab is interested in is the extent to which similar circuit outputs can be generated by multiple mechanisms, both in different individual animals, or in the same animal over its life-time. The  crustacean stomatogastric nervous systemy is used to study central pattern generating circuits, which are groups of neurons found in vertebrate and invertebrate nervous systems responsible for the generation of specific rhythmic behavior,s such as walking, swimming, and breathing.

  • 2019 Distinguished Lecture & Symposium: National Institute of Mental Health Director Joshua Gordon, MD, PhD, Feb. 20 

    DIBS Lecture & Symposium
    National Institute of Mental Health Director Josh Gordon takes a selfie with Elena Tenebaum, Psychiatry, with one of the winning posters

"From Brain Circuits to Behavior: How Technology is Transforming the Science of Mental Health." Josh Gordon, MD, PhD, Director of the National Institute of Mental Health, gave the keynote address after presentations by Duke faculty Duke faculty Kafui Dzirasa, Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences, School of Medicine, and David Carlson, Civil Engineering, Pratt School of Engineering; Alison Adcock, Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences and Director, Center for Cognitive Neuroscience; and Guillermo Sapiro, Electrical & Computer Engineering, Pratt School of Engineering. Dr. Gordon met with DIBS Faculty Network Members and discussed career options with graduate students and postdoctoral associates. See news story.

Other Annual Symposia

Center on Addiction & Behavior Change: In April of each year, the CABC and DIBS host a major symposium focused on research, public health and policy issues related to addiction.

Portion of CABC Cannibis program cover2019: "Altered States of Cannabis Regulation: Informing Policy with Science" This event brought in scientific experts and policy professionals to discuss medical marijuana, preconception and psychosocial effects of cannabis exposure, and legal aspects of legalization.

Picture of speaker at CABC light smoker symposium

2018“Tackling the Final Few: Bringing Light Smokers to Cessation" This symposium brought together basic, clinical, and public health researchers to address the important, yet often overlooked, public health issue of light smoking. Speakers focused on topics such as dependence and treatment, tobacco-related health disparities among African-Americans and Latinos, and differential effects of nicotine administration in rats.

Past Interdisciplinary Symposia

Brain poster“Exercise & the Brain”: In 2018, more than 225 researchers representing multiple disciplines attended a symposium focused on physical exercise as a powerful strategy for promoting and  maintaining brain health and resilience across the lifespan. See news story.

“Summer School in Social Neuroscience and Neuroeconomics”: In June 2018 and 2019, DIBS and the Scientific Research Network on Decision Neuroscience and Aging, co-founded by DIBS Faculty Network Member Gregory Samanez-Larkin, PhD, co-sponsored this multidisciplinary program. Faculty members, instructors, and graduate student, postdoctoral, and junior faculty attendees come from across the country to discuss topics such as Social Perception and Judgment, Social Cognition, and Decision-making.