Saturday, June 07, 2014

BioEM Program 2014


We’ve received about 200 abstracts for the BioEM2014 conference, the joint annual event of the  Bioelectromagnetics Society (BEMS) and the European BioElectromagnetics Association (EBEA).
There are 11 confirmed invited speakers, who will present plenary sessions and tutorials on various topics in the field. The details of these international experts are listed below. In addition, the meeting will again encourage contributions from students in the field, the future of our community.
Please click here to download the full programme, and here for Programme Boklet Errata.
Don't miss the opportunity to attend an interesting technical program! Register now and be a part of this outstanding event!
Phil Chadwick and Theo Samaras
Technical Program Committee chairs

Plenary Speakers

Topic: Microwave breast imaging
Susan Hagness
Philip Dunham Reed Professor
College of Engineering, University of Wisconsin, USA
Susan C. Hagness received the B.S. degree with highest honors and the Ph.D. degree in electrical engineering from Northwestern University, Evanston, IL in 1993 and 1998, respectively. Since 1998, she has been with the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where she currently holds the title of Philip D. Reed Professor. She is also a faculty affiliate of the Department of Biomedical Engineering and a member of the University of Wisconsin Carbone Cancer Center.  Her current bioelectromagnetics research interests include microwave breast imaging, microwave thermotherapy, nanoparticles as electromagnetic theranostic agents, and computational electromagnetics theory and applications in biology and medicine.
Dr. Hagness served as an elected member of the IEEE Antennas and Propagation Society (AP-S) Administrative Committee from 2003 to 2005 and as an Associate Editor for the IEEE Antennas and Wireless Propagation Letters from 2002 to 2007. She also served as Chair of Commission K of the United States National Committee (USNC) of the International Union of Radio Science (URSI) from 2009 to 2011, and Technical Program Chair of the 2012 IEEE International Symposium on Antennas and Propagation and USNC/URSI National Radio Science Meeting. She currently serves as Chair of the IEEE AP-S Fellows Committee. She was the recipient of the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers presented by the White House in 2000. In 2002, she was named one of the 100 top young innovators in science and engineering in the world by the MIT Technology Review magazine. She is also the recipient of the UW-Madison Emil Steiger Distinguished Teaching Award (2003), the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society Early Career Achievement Award (2004), the URSI Isaac Koga Gold Medal (2005), the IEEE Transactions on Biomedical Engineering Outstanding Paper Award (2007), the IEEE Education Society Mac E. Van Valkenburg Early Career Teaching Award (2007), the UW System Alliant Energy Underkofler Excellence in Teaching Award (2009), the Physics in Medicine and Biology Citations Prize (2011), and the UW-Madison Kellett Mid-Career Award (2011). She was elected Fellow of the IEEE in 2009.

Topic: The state of the art in electrical impedance tomography
Andy Adler
Systems and Computer Engineering, Carleton University, Ottawa, Canada
Andy Adler is professor and Canada Research Chair (Tier II) in biomedical engineering in Systems and Computer Engineering at Carleton University in Ottawa, Canada. His research interests are in: 1) biometrics imaging and security systems, and the associated algorithms, measurement devices, and privacy and security aspects; and, 2) development of non-invasive biomedical measurement technologies and sensors, including the medical image and signal processing algorithms. He is author of five book chapters, three patents, 76 journal and numerous conference papers. Previously, he taught and researched at the University of Ottawa, and worked in senior technology positions at BioDentity (now cryptometrics), AiT (now 3M), DEW Engineering (now ActivCard), and CIL explosives (now Orica). Andy Adler received the B.A.Sc. (honours) in Engineering Physics from the University of British Columbia in 1990, and a Ph.D. in Biomedical Engineering from the École Polytechnique de Montréal in 1995. He also worked at postdoctoral positions at McGill University and the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center.

Topic: Making sense of non-sense: The study of magnetic alignment in vertebrates
Hynek Burda
Department of General Zoology, University Duisburg-Essen, Germany
Hynek Burda was born in 1952 in the Czech Republic. He studied zoology at the Charles University in Prague and served from 1977-1984 as a research assistant (since 1981 as a research associate) at the Institute of Experimental Medicine of the Czechoslovak Academy of Sciences in Prague. In the period 1984-1986 he was a senior lecturer at the Department of Biology, University of Zambia in Lusaka. In 1986 he received an Alexander v. Humboldt Research Fellowship and later worked as a research associate at the Zoological Institute of the J.W.Goethe-University in Frankfurt am Main and as a research associate and lecturer of human anatomy at the Centre of Morphology, School of Human Medicine; J.W.Goethe-University in Frankfurt am Main. Since 1995 he is a Full Professor (Ordinarius, C4) and chair in General Zoology at the University of Duisburg-Essen. Since 2000 he is also a visiting professor at the Faculty of Biology, South Bohemian University, Ceske Budejovice, Czech Republic. His research interests include hearing biology of mammals, sensory biology and ecology of subterranean mammals, all aspects of biology, systematics and evolution of African mole-rats (Bathyergidae) and biogeography of small mammals of the Zambezian region.

Topic: Staying in Shape: Membrane Voltage as a Master Regulator of Tissue Shape During Regeneration
Wendy Scott Beane
Department of Biological Sciences, Western Michigan University, USA
Shape is essential...from single proteins to entire organisms. Shape changes and tissue remodeling drive development, disease and even aging. But despite its importance, we still know very little about how overall tissue and body shape is established, maintained, and (following injury) restored. Dr. Beane's research group uses the awesome regenerative powers of the planarian flatworm to investigate these questions of shape. Planaria are remarkable in that they can regenerate any and all tissues, even brain! This allows us to study how the many different cellular activities (migration, division, gene regulation, even cell death) are coordinated across thousands of cells to ensure that regenerating planarians always took like that stereotypical "planaria." Uncovering those mechanisms which control the regeneration of shape has the potential to highlight new therapeutic strategies for treating lost or damaged organs and limbs. The main questions currently being explored in the Beane laboratory are:
  • How bioelectrical signaling (membrane voltage and ion flux) controls both new tissue polarity and old tissue remodeling during regeneration.
  • How bioelectrical signaling pathways interact with biochemical developmental signaling pathways.
  • How regeneration is terminated, specifically in the nervous system.

Dr. Beane has received the B.S. in Biomedical Science from Averett University (Danville, VA) and the Ph.D. in Biology, Duke University (Durham, NC). She has worked as a Post Doctoral Fellow in the Levin Lab of the Center for Regenerative and Developmental Biology at Tufts University (Medford, MA) before joining Western Michigan University where she is currently an Assistant Professor.

Topic: Reception and learning of electric fields in bees
Uwe Greggers
Neurobiology, Freie Universität Berlin, Germany
Uwe Greggers, born in 1946, studied Physics at the Goethe University Frankfurt, Germany and received his degree in Electrical, Electronics and Communications Engineering  from the Technische Universität Darmstadt, Germany in 1972. In 1973 he joined the neurobiology research group led by Randolf Menzel at the TU Darmstadt. In 1976 the group moved to the newly established Institute for Neurobiology at the Freie Universität Berlin where Greggers has continued his work as a research associate to this day. Using the honeybee as a model system his investigations have focused on optimal foraging behaviour, learning and memory, and, more recently, on the role of electric fields in dance communication. Since 1999, Greggers has been using harmonic radar tracking technology to investigate navigation strategies in an attempt to elucidate the phenomenon of the honeybee cognitive map.  His findings have been published in numerous high-ranking journals.

Tutorial Speakers

Topic: A tutorial on epidemiology
Martin Röösli
Martin Röösli has a background in atmospheric physics and a PhD in environmental epidemiology. He is Professor at the Swiss Tropical- and Public Health Institute in Basel and leads the Unit for Environmental Exposures and Health.
His research focuses on environmental health and includes exposure assessment studies, aetiological research and health risk assessments in the area of electromagnetic fields, ionizing radiation, noise exposure, passive smoking, climate change and ambient air pollution.
He conducted several epidemiological studies on personal exposure and health effects of electromagnetic fields including occupational studies in railway workers as well as population based studies dealing with cancer, neurodegenerative diseases and non-specific symptoms of ill health. He is a member in various national and international commissions on environmental health risk and has published numerous scientific papers, reviews and book chapters.
Topic: An introduction to electroporation and its applications
P. Thomas Vernier
P. Thomas Vernier is Engineering Manager of MOSIS at the University of Southern California (USC) Information Sciences Institute and Research Associate Professor in the Ming Hsieh Department of Electrical Engineering at USC. His research and industrial experience includes ultraviolet microscopy analysis of S-adenosylmethionine metabolism in the yeast Rhodotorula glutinis, molecular biology of the temperature-sensitive host restriction of bacterial viruses in Pseudomonas aeruginosa, low-level environmental gas monitoring, wide-band instrumentation data recording, and physical and electrical characterization and modeling of semiconductor and microelectromechanical devices. He currently concentrates on the effects of nanosecond, megavolt-per-meter electric fields on biological systems, with applications in cancer therapeutics, combining experimental observations with molecular dynamics simulations, and on the integration of cellular and biomolecular sensors, carbon nanotubes, and quantum dots with commercial integrated electronic circuit fabrication processes. Vernier received his Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from the University of Southern California in 2004, and is a member of the American Chemical Society, American Society for Microbiology, Bioelectrochemical Society, Bioelectromagnetics Society, Biophysical Society, and Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers.
Topic: Sources, levels of exposure & standard
John Bolte
Dr. John Bolte, PhD in Physics (2003) and registered Epidemiologist (2011), works as a senior scientist at the Centre for Sustainability, Environment and Health of the National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM) of the Netherlands. He (co-)authored over 15 papers on personal exposure, non-specific health effects and effects on ecology. He was the principal investigator in the 3-year Dutch study: EMF exposure characterisation using personal exposimeters and an Activity Exposure Matrix (EMF AEM) (2007-2010). To prepare for implementation of the original EU workers Directive, EU Directive 2004/40/EC, on the protection of workers, he has, on commission of the Ministry of Social Affairs and employment, investigated and analysed the exposure in the Dutch working environments. He built a classification system for exposure in the working environment and provided a list of possible measures for the protection of workers. He was the Dutch national delegate in COST action BM0704 'Emerging EMF Technologies and Health Risk Management' and a member of WG1 on measurements and WG3 on epidemiology.
Topic: Overview of 50 years of laboratory, animal and human studies
Bernard Veyret
Dr. Bernard Veyret belongs to the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS) as “Directeur de Recherche” (senior scientist) at the “Laboratoire de l’Intégration du Matériau au Sytème”, within the College of Chemistry and Physics at the University of Bordeaux 1, France. Trained as an engineer in Physics and Chemistry at the “Industrial Physics and Chemistry Higher Educational Institution” ESPCI in Paris, he joined the CNRS in 1979, got his PhD and did research on the physical chemistry of the troposphere. Since 1984, B. Veyret has turned towards the new field of research on biological effects of electromagnetic fields (bioelectromagnetics). He is now head of the Bioelectromagnetics Laboratory of the ‘École Pratique des Hautes Études’. His research team in Bordeaux is composed of about 15 scientists, biologists and physicists. He was one of the founders of the European Bioelectromagnetics Association (EBEA) in 1989. He spent a sabbatical year at the University of Rome “La Sapienza” during the school year 2005-2006. He belongs to the main commission of ICNIRP (International Commission on Non Ionizing Radiation Protection) and is a member of the International Committee of the Swedish Radiation Protection Authority (SSI). B. Veyret has authored more than 75 papers in peer-reviewed journals and co-authored several national and international expert-group reports on EMF and health (he was the chairman of the French expert group on “ELF and health” and is a consultant for the AFSSET on the same topic). He is currently a consultant with WHO, developing a Web-based EMF course for young scientists working in bioelectromagnetics, and has served as the chairman of the research recommendation committee of WHO. He was the coordinator of the European programme Perform-B and was an external reviewer for the RAMPS2001 and TeraHertz-Bridge European programmes. Bernard Veyret was awarded the Medal of the French URSI.

d'Arsonval speaker

Carl F Blackman
Dr. Carl F. Blackman received his Ph.D. in Biophysics at Pennsylvania State University in 1969, performed post-doctoral training at Brookhaven National Laboratory (1969-1970), joined the Bureau of Radiological Health (HEW) in 1970, and later that year was placed in the EPA when it was formed.  Dr. Blackman studied the complexities of electric and magnetic field interactions with biological systems (1970-1998), which included financial support from US DOE 1989-1998.  The research he and his colleagues performed resulted in several discoveries including: that multiple "windows" of intensity and frequency have biological effects; that the earth's magnetic field is involved in some biological responses to EMF; that the oncostatic hormone, melatonin, modulates gap junction intercellular communication; and that magnetic field exposure alters the action of melatonin and nerve growth factor in cells.  He has recently published on the potential for microRNA changes after chemical dosing of mice to be an early predictive biomarker for cancer, and he now coordinates research efforts and is a co-author on the reports testing nano-materials of environmental interest with in vitro endpoints associated with DNA damage and adverse-outcome pathways associated with carcinogenic activity. 

Dr. Blackman was one of six founders of the Bioelectromagnetics Society in 1978, served as president in 1990, on the Editorial Board (14 years), and has served twice on the Board of Directors (1979-1980; 2007-2010).  He served on numerous national and international scientific committees, including the WHO (Environmental Health Criteria #137, 1993 - RFR health implications), the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC, Volume 80, 2002 - Non-Ionizing Radiation, Part 1: Static and Extremely Low-Frequency (ELF) Electric and Magnetic Fields; and IARC, Vol. 102, to be published in 2012: Non-Ionizing Radiation, Part II: Radiofrequency Electromagnetic Fields), the ANSI/IEEE (1992, US Radiofrequency Radiation exposure guidelines), and the US National Council of Radiation and Measurement's committee (SC 79, chaired by Adey - health effects of ELF EMF).  He has reviewed grant applications for 17 organizations and manuscripts for 60 organizations.  

Dr. Blackman is a member of the American Society for Cell Biology, American Society for Photobiology, the Biophysics Society, Bioelectromagnetics Society, European BioElectromagnetics Association, and the Society for In Vitro Biology.  He has authored or co-authored 65 peer-reviewed publications, 24 reviews & invited commentaries, 65 invited presentations, and 147 abstracts.  He has mentored one scientist on sabbatical leave, four scientists as post-doctoral students, and 13 undergraduate students, and has been an external examiner for two doctoral theses. 

BioEM2014 Program at a glance

Please click here to download the full preliminary programme.
Sunday 8 June 2014
BEMS and EBEA Board meetings08:00-17:00Table Bay Hotel
Registration17:00-19:00The Pavilion Conference Centre, Clock Tower Centre
Welcome function18:00-20:00The Pavilion Conference Centre, Clock Tower Centre
Student ice breaker19:00-21:00TBC
Monday 9 June 2014
Scientific sessions08:30-17:00Table Bay Hotel
Tuesday 10 June 2014
Scientific sessions08:00-18:00Table Bay Hotel
Conference Dinner19:00-23:00BAIA Seafood Restaurant, V & A Waterfront
Wednesday 11 June 2014
Scientific sessions08:00-13:00Table Bay Hotel
Tours/Free time13:00-17:00
Thursday 12 June 2014
Scientific sessions08:00-19:00Table Bay Hotel
Friday 13 June 2014
Scientific sessions08:00-12:00Table Bay Hotel
Closing ceremony12:00-13:00Table Bay Hotel
BEMS and EBEA Board meetings14:00-17:00Table Bay Hotel

Social program

Sunday 8 June 2014
Welcome function:  The Pavilion Conference Centre, Clock Tower Centre, V & A Waterfront @ 18:00
With the magnificent Table Mountain in the background and it's expansive views over Table Bay and the Waterfront, The Pavilion Conference Centre offers a glorious setting for business and private events. The Pavilion is conveniently locatedwithin Cape Town's expansive and internationally famous Waterfront, overlooking Cape Town's harbour, twenty minutes from Cape Town's International Airport and only five minutes from the Cape Town City Centre.
Tuesday  10 June
Conference Dinner:  BAIA Seafood Restaurant, V & A Waterfront @ 19:00
Set in a prime spot at the Victoria Wharf, Baía (pronounced Ba-hia and meaning the Bay) enjoys spectacular panoramic harbour and ocean views.  Baía specializes in the finest seafood from around southern Africa, the finest poultry, beef and venison and a renowned wine-list with rare Cape vintage wines and imported liqueur selection – and has earned the reputation as the place to indulge in the best seafood platter in the Cape.
Wednesday 11 June
All Congress delegates are encouraged to explore the beauty of Cape Town and surroundings during the afternoon at own leisure.  Please click here for suggested half day tour options.

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