The Nella and Leon Benoziyo Center for Neurological Diseases

 

Anthony H. Futerman, Director
The Joseph Meyerhoff Professorial Chair of Biochemistry

The Nella and Leon Benoziyo Center for Neurological Diseases (BCND) was established in late 2003. Its mission is to promote research and understanding of the molecular basis of neurological diseases. Under this umbrella are several devastating and yet unsolved brain diseases, including developmental disorders of the brain, e.g. fragile X syndrome and Down syndrome as well as neurodegenerative diseases of the aging brain, including Parkinsonism and Alzheimer's disease. In between are affective disorders, likely to originate as a developmental defect of the brain, but that last through the entire human life. The common denominator of these diseases is that they are unique to the human brain, and thus are hard to tackle in model systems and many if not most seem to involve an intricate array of risk factors and defected genes.

The mission of the Center will be achieved through several avenues including research grants, support for conferences, and invitations of prominent scientists from abroad.

As part of this mission, the BCND organizes an annual symposium on emerging issues in Neurological Diseases. The First Benoziyo symposium on the Molecular Basis of Neurological Diseases took place on the 17th and 18th of October, 2004 at the Botnar Auditorium with 6 overseas participants and 18 Israelis. The 2nd Benoziyo symposium was held on the 25th of September, 2005, with two prominent scientists from abroad and 15 local scientists. The 3rd Benoziyo symposium took place on the 9th of September, 2007, and included scientists from Israel and abroad. The 4th Benoziyo symposium took place on the 21st of September, 2008. These symposia contribute to the development of collaborative studies among scientists at the Weizmann and other research/medical institutions in Israel and abroad.