Vesicle Trafficking & Pathways to Neurodegeneration (Virtual Conference)

17–19 May 2021

Wellcome Genome Campus, UK


Alterations in vesicle trafficking are emerging as key elements in the underlying pathogenesis of dementia and diverse neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and the spastic paraplegias.

This new conference will build on links across these disorders to provide genetic and functional insights into the underlying etiology of neuronal cell death. Discussion will centre on neurodegeneration-related human genetics and endocytic trafficking regulation, including synaptic vesicle biology; lysosomal and endosomal dysfunction; mitochondrial biology; regulation of autophagy; and axonal transport disease.  Novel technologies, large-scale data approaches and challenges of translating mechanistic advances into therapeutics will be discussed.

Online sessions will run in afternoons for Europe and Africa | mornings for the Americas, enabling researchers from across the globe to engage with the latest developments.  The conference will bring together clinicians specialising in neurology along with researchers from academia and industry involved in neurodegeneration across the spectrum of human genetics, fundamental cell biology and drug development.

This new forum aims to advance understanding of neurodegenerative disease biology and aid development of interventions that benefit patients.  We welcome abstracts on all major themes of this meeting to oral or poster presentations.

Image by the pioneering Camillo Golgi, with thanks to University History Museum, University of Pavia.


The conference will run from Monday 17 May until Wednesday 19 May 2021.
Sessions will start at 13:00 BST and finish at approximately 18:00 BST each day. See the time where you are here.

Topics will include:

  • Axonal vesicle transport disruption
  • Neurodegeneration-associated autophagy
  • Lysosomal & endosomal dysfunction in neurodegenerative disease
  • Mitochondrial biology of neurodegeneration
  • Synaptic dysfunction in neuropathogenesis
  • Genetic links to vesicle trafficking dysfunction

Discussions on drug discovery and therapeutic interventions will be embedded in each session.

Organisers and speakers

Scientific programme committee

Craig Blackstone
Massachusetts General Hospital - Harvard University, USA

Fiona Elwood
Novartis, USA

Patrick Lewis
Royal Veterinary College, UK

Helene Plun-Favreau
University College London, UK

Keynote speakers

Pietro De Camilli
Yale School of Medicine, USA

Confirmed speakers

Alison Goate – Mount Sinai Medical School, USA
Erika Holzbaur – University of Pennsylvania, USA
Henry Houlden – University College London, UK
Michael Lazarou – Monash University, Australia
Heidi McBride – McGill University, Canada
Ira Milosevic – University of Oxford, UK
Beat Nyfeler – Novartis, Switzerland
Helene Plun-Favreau – University College London, UK
Margaret Robinson – University of Cambridge, UK
Pablo Sardi – Sanofi, USA
Giampietro Schiavo – University College London, UK
Patrik Verstreken – VIB-KU Leuven, Belgium

Conference organisers

Amanda Fletcher – Conference & Events Organiser
Jane Murphy – Scientific Programme Officer

How to apply

Student £50
Delegates from LMICs* £50
Academic £100
Commercial £150

The virtual registration package includes access to all live-streamed sessions (including poster sessions and online networking channels), as well as access to all sessions ‘on-demand’ for four weeks after the event.

*To increase the international diversity of attendees at our meetings, we have reduced fees for delegates from Lower and Middle Income Countries (see list of countries here) If you are in need of financial support would like to apply for a bursary, please contact the conference organiser. When applying for a bursary you will be asked to provide a letter stating financial need and a CV.

Bursary deadline: 3 May 2021

Registration deadline: 10 May 2021

Log in details for the virtual conference portal will be provided on the Friday before the event.


We welcome abstracts from all areas relevant to the main themes of the meeting, for both oral and poster presentations. Several oral presentations will be chosen from the abstracts submitted.

Abstracts will only be considered from registered delegates. Please use our online abstract submission system and follow the instructions given to ensure your abstract is submitted correctly. All abstracts must be submitted by the deadline. If you are intending to submit more than one abstract, please contact the conference organiser prior to registration.

The scientific programme committee will assess your abstract after the deadline has passed and you will be notified whether you have been selected for an oral or poster presentation.

All those accepted for a poster presentation will be given the opportunity to upload a short video describing their work.

Abstract deadline: 23 March 2021

How to upload an abstract once you have already completed registration:

  1. Log back into your registration account using either Firefox or Internet Explorer as your browser, via link above the ‘Share’ button on the right hand column of this page
  2. Click on ‘Account’ (top right).
  3. Then click on ‘View account history’. This will show a table of your event registrations.
  4. In the right-hand column you will see the option to ‘Upload file’ – click on this and select to upload an abstract.
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