OHSU and OMSI Team Up for Brain Awareness Week

02/06/01    Portland, Ore.

Young and Old Learn About the Brain during Portland's Second Annual Cerebral Celebration


Brain Awareness Week 2001: A Brain Odyssey -- a week of events aimed at educating Oregonians of all ages about the brain. Participants will have an opportunity to learn about the brain firsthand through interactive displays during a Brain Fair. Area high school students will battle head-to-head in a Brain Bee to determine who knows the most about the mind. The public also will have a chance to meet with internationally respected brain experts, learn about the latest cutting-edge neuroscience discoveries, and hear about the newest therapies for those suffering from neuro-degenerative disease and traumatic brain injury.


Neuroscientists from OHSU, OMSI staff and guest scientists from throughout the country will attend the event.


March 10 - 15, 2001


Events will take place at the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry, 1945 S.E. Water Ave., Portland




Saturday, March 10,
Sunday, March 11
1-5 p.m.  

Brain Games -- Two days of brain teasers and twisters at OMSI, an event specially designed for families. Children and adults can better learn about the brain through interactive, hands-on displays and demonstrations. Events include an Albert Einstein look-a-like contest and a Brain Bee knowledge competition for area high school students. Prizes, including 3-D T-shirts, will be awarded. David Heil, former host of the PBS show "Newton's Apple," and Eric Chudler, Ph.D., director of the Science for Kids program, will offer entertaining brainpower presentations hourly. Sunday's events will conclude with Brain Awareness Week's kickoff lecture at 7 p.m. William Greenough, Ph.D., a neuroscientist from the Beckman Institute at the University of Illinois, will help explain two major mysteries of the mind -- learning and memory.

Tuesday, March 13
7 p.m.  

The Quest for Cures -- Tuesday evening's panel discussion will focus on the reasons why nerve cells break down. This can be caused by attacks to the immune system, strokes and aging. Researchers in labs at OHSU and across the nation are searching for cures to Alzheimer's, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson's and numerous other neurodegenerative diseases. The evening's conversation will center on scientific study of these diseases, from basic laboratory research to therapies at the patient's bedside. OHSU scientists also will address the latest discoveries offering hope to patients.


Wednesday, March 14
7 p.m.  

Trauma and Toxins -- Physicians and researchers will discuss the impact of traumatic brain injury, alcohol, drugs, stress and other factors that injure the nervous system. The panel also will talk about the brain's ability to compensate for these injuries by shifting mental functions to new areas of the brain. The panel will address how this knowledge is being applied to patient treatment and rehabilitation.


Thursday, March 15
7 p.m.  

Brain Breakthroughs and Neuroscience Careers -- The week's final panel discussion will stress the latest scientific breakthroughs in understanding how the brain works, from discovering the genes that create all brain proteins to the way in which the brain is organized and communicates with our bodies and the world outside. This panel is especially worthwhile for future scientists and physicians.