Inaugural Meeting

A screen capture from the initial meeting of the BENFRA Center, showing 26 faces

The BENFRA research team met virtually this summer to celebrate the founding of the newly announced BENFRA Center

The meeting began with an overview of Botanical Dietary Supplements Research Centers (BDSRCs) and the CARBON program from the ODS Program Scientist, Dr. Barbara Sorkin and NCCIH Program Officer Dr. Craig Hopp. BENFRA Program Director, Dr. Amala Soumyanath, then discussed the history, goals and structure of the BENFRA Center. Next, the research team received messages of support from leaders within the OHSU School of Medicine, including Dr. Daniel Marks (Senior Associate Dean for Research in the OHSU School of Medicine), Dr. Helmi Lutsep (Interim Chair of the Department of Neurology), Dr. Joseph Quinn (Vice Chair for Research in the Department of Neurology), Dr. Jeffrey Kaye (Director of the NIH-Layton Oregon Aging and Alzheimer's Disease Research Center), and Dr. Barry Oken (Director of  the Oregon Research Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine in Neurological Diseases). Afterwards, the individual researchers were introduced to the group, as the leads for each research project and supporting core gave detailed presentations on their component’s role within the Center.

The meeting, which was expertly MC'd by Dr. Alex Speers (BENFRA Administrator), was a great way to celebrate the formation of the BENFRA Center and all of the talented researchers involved!