May 2019

Next year’s European Congress of Radiology (ECR 2020) will include a lecture by Prof. Nenad Sestan, the leading researcher of a Yale study, which successfully partially revived pig brains six hours after death. Prof. Sestan joins a line-up of many top scientists from across the world who will be speaking at Europe’s largest radiological meeting.

Prof. Sestan is a Professor of Neuroscience, of Comparative Medicine, of Genetics and of Psychiatry at Yale University. He is a world-leading researcher of the human brain, focussing particularly on the transcriptome, the term for the totality of expressed RNA molecules, of the brain. With a Hirsch-Index score of 45, he has published over 100 articles according to Scopus and has been cited 9136 times in 7268 documents.

Most recently, Prof. Sestan and his team of researchers were the subject of significant media attention for their work on pig brains. The team were able to partially revive these brains several hours after the animals had died, by circulating oxygen-rich fluid through the organ. Although the brains did not show any signs of returned consciousness or organised cellular activity, the researchers state that even the presence of some cellular activity proves that this fluid could help to prevent brain cells from sustaining irreparable damage as blood circulation stops as well as helping to restore some cellular functions. It is hoped that this breakthrough might be used in the future to develop new therapies to treat strokes and other conditions in which blood flow to parts of the brain is blocked, or to treat degenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s. You can find more information about the study here.

President of the European Society of Radiology, Boris Brkljačić, highlighted the importance of involving speakers such as Prof. Sestan at ECR. ‘I am extremely pleased that Professor Sestan will be speaking at our meeting. The ESR is constantly striving to bring the world’s leading scientists to attend our congress, and we feel his talk will be of great interest to attendees. Our annual meeting is known for being a truly diverse congress, and I think this is reflected not only in the diversity of the people who attend but also in the diversity of the content presented there. While there will always be a focus on radiology, involving speakers from a range of other professions helps to broaden our horizons as a field and keep the congress fresh and innovative’.

More information about Prof. Sestan’s talk and all other ECR 2020 keynote lectures will be available in the lead up to the congress.