In this Facebook Live Chat, reporter Hal Foster — joined by scientists and leaders of groups working to promote research and patient interests in Friedreich’s and other ataxias — looks back at highlights of the opening day of IARC 2017 in Pisa, Italy.
IARC 2017 — the world’s largest scientific conference into ataxias — comes “at a time when research in this area is very exciting,” Foster opened the chat by saying.
Joining him were Kyle Bryant of FARA, Julie Vallortigara and Sue Millman with Ataxia UK, Professor Barry Hunt, a trustee with the UK group and the father of a daughter with the disease, and Dr. Sanjay Bidichandani, a researcher at the University of Oklahoma and FARA board scientist, and Dr. Marek Napierala, a researcher at the University of Alabama at Birmingham.
“We’re here with a group of 400 people all focused on curing these diseases,” Bryant said. “A lot of science happens in the lab, but it’s amazing how much acceleration can happen in hallways outside the conference room. … It’s amazing to see that in person, and I’m here to tell you it’s happening and it’s happening now.”
Friedreich’s Ataxia News has a team of reporters, editors and social media specialists covering IARC, the International Ataxia Research Conference that run through Sept. 30.
You can listen to the discussion here: