First Philadelphia Spine Research Symposium a Success

Published on Wednesday September 28, 2005

The first Philadelphia Spine Research Symposium was a resounding success for the Philadelphia spine research community.

The symposium brought leading spine researchers and over 100 attendees to the Bossone Research Enterprise Center at Drexel University on Tuesday, September 27, 2005 to exchange ideas and discuss leading edge research in the field of spinal orthopaedics. Topics covered at the meeting include spine biomechanics, disc biology, degenerative disc disease, spine implant medical device technologies, spine imaging and diagnostic techniques, and intervertebral disc fusion.

The meeting was organized by the Philadelphia Spine Research Society through a steering committee chaired by Dr. Michele Marcolongo, Associate Professor in the Department of Materials Science and Engineering at Drexel University. Dr. Marcolongo was recently elected President of the Philadelphia Spine Research Society, which was founded in May 2005 with the mission of uniting local research, clinical, and industrial members in their roles in advancing the treatment of spine disorders and understanding the behavior of the spine from tissue to cell and molecular levels.

Speakers at the meeting came from academia, clinical practice, and industry, from Drexel University; University of Pennsylvania; Thomas Jefferson University; University of Pittsburgh; Brown Medical School/Rhode Island Hospital; Synthes, Inc.; Exponent, Inc.; Kyphon; Gentis, Inc.; and Kensey Nash Corporation. Synthes and Exponent were kind enough to sponsor the activity.

The Philadelphia Spine Research Society has planned a series of workshop meetings for the coming year and will be hosting a Second Annual Spine Research Symposium in 2006. “The need for a forum for researchers in this area is strong; there are numerous meetings to discuss the clinical aspects of spine treatment, however, there is no current specific venue to support the sharing of concepts of spine research,” Dr. Marcolongo reported. The Society hopes to build on this local effort to involve a broader population of national and international researchers, with the goal of better understanding the behavior of the spine and creating new treatment regimes to aid people with back and neck pain.

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