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VIC Stem Cell Network - July 2015 Seminar

04:00 PM - Tuesday 07 July, 2015
Join us to hear Professor Trevor Kilpatrick from the Melbourne Neuroscience Institute at The University of Melbourne discuss the potential of cell therapies to treat multiple sclerosis.

TITLE: Stemming the tide of progressive MS

TIME: 4:00PM Tuesday 2 June (refreshments to follow)

VENUE: Auditorium, Melbourne Brain Centre, The University of Melbourne, Parkville


Multiple Sclerosis is the most common neurodegenerative disease of young Caucasians. A common outcome of MS is inexorable, progressive neurological disability, resulting in considerable interest in the development of either neuroprotective or regenerative therapies that could be used in concert with currently available immunomodulatory therapies. There are several ways in which stem cell science is potentially applicable to the management of this complex disease. Firstly, haematopoietic stem cells can be used for reconstitution of the immune system as an adjunct to high dose chemotherapy designed to modify peripheral immune attack in aggressive, recent onset disease. Secondly, cellular therapy can be directed to the modification of the inflammatory milieu within the central nervous system or to the provision of an environment more receptive to regeneration. Thirdly, there are approaches that can be theoretically delivered to directly enhance regenerative potential. It is essential to convey to both the lay and scientific communities the differing challenges and opportunities contingent in adopting each of these approaches. An honest appraisal of likely short term benefits as opposed to long-term research goals relevant to the application of stem cell science to MS is important to the minimisation of engagement in futile interventions either locally or off shore.


Trevor Kilpatrick MBBS PhD FRACP 

Trevor Kilpatrick is a Professor of Neurology and Director of the Melbourne Neuroscience Institute at The University of Melbourne; he is the leader of the MS Division at the Florey Institute of Neuroscience and Mental Health and is a neurologist and Head of the MS Unit at the Royal Melbourne Hospital.

Professor Kilpatrick graduated with a Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery from the University of Melbourne in 1982 and then went on to specialise in neurology. He undertook graduate studies at The University of Melbourne and gained a Doctor of Philosophy in 1993. Appointments at The Salk Institute for Biological Studies (La Jolla, USA), Institute of Neurology (London, UK) and The National Hospital and Moorfields Eye Hospital (London, UK) followed. He returned to Melbourne as the Viertel Senior Medical Research Fellow at the Walter & Eliza Hall Institute for Medical Research and as the Head of the Melbourne Multiple Sclerosis Research Unit at the Royal Melbourne Hospital.

Professor Kilpatrick has been the recipient of the Sunderland Award (1994), AMRAD Postdoctoral Award (1995), inaugural Leonard Cox Award (2000), Bethlehem Griffiths Research Foundation Award for Medical Research (2004), the Australian Museum’s Jamie Callachor Eureka Prize for Medical Research (2008), the Stephen C. Reingold Research Award by the US MS National Multiple Sclerosis Society (2010) and most recently, (2013), Professor Kilpatrick was awarded the Bethlehem Griffiths Research Foundation Medal for outstanding leadership in medical research. 

Professor Kilpatrick has published widely including publications in Nature, Nature genetics and Nature Medicine. His research interests include the neurobiology of multiple sclerosis, neural precursor cell biology and the study of genetic and environmental factors that contribute to MS as well as the translation of basic research discoveries to the clinic.