Last month we saw the official opening of BRAIN centre at Denmark Hill’s KCL campus. Although the centre itself has been successfully running for almost a year, the centre manager Dr Diana Cash invited distinguished guests to attend an afternoon symposium of talks from pre-clinical imaging neuroscientists to mark the official opening of the centre for future collaborations and work.

Before the afternoon of talks got underway, our Operations Manager and Chief Biologist Dr Camilla Simmons, gave guests a tour of the facility with the help of our MR Physicist Eugene Kim, on hand to answer any technical questions regarding “Felix” (the newly named 9.4T preclinical MRI scanner).

The line-up of speakers was impressive not only on paper, but also delivered to an excellent standard on the day. Diana Cash started off the day with an introduction of the BRAIN team, the new Bruker systems, and capabilities of the centre.

This was followed by a brief speech by Bruker representative Matteo Milanesi, thanking the centre staff for their part played in the installation of the 9.4T preclinical MRI scanner, and welcoming the attendees of the symposium. Our first guest talk came from Dr Alessandro Gozzi of the Italian Institute of Technology, who gave an impressive and comprehensive talk about functional organisation and dynamic connectivity in the mouse brain. This was followed by Dr Jason Berwick of the University of Sheffield, who gave an intriguing talk about neurovascular coupling, with a particular reference to the elusive and often debated ‘deoxy-dip’.

After a short coffee break, Dr Steve Sawiak of Cambridge University gave us a lesson in ‘proper’ analysis of brain morphometry in the animal model using SPMMouse automated methods.

To round off the day of exciting talks we saw talks from two of our own, Dr Marija-Magdalena Petrinovic, and Dr Anthony Vernon of Kings College London. Marija gave us a great talk on Glutamate and GABA in human and animal models of Autism Spectrum Disorder, while Anthony told us an interesting “tale of two drugs” with respect to psychotropics and brain morphometry.

We would like to thank our guests speakers for their absorbing talks and the attendees for taking the time to come and see our new facility and hear about all the exciting new projects and collaborations we have lined up.

And then there was networking, and wine…


It was cool to be involved in organising this!

Karen Randall

We thank Bruker for their generous support in funding this event.