2021 Inter-Institutional Meeting

12th Annual Inter-Institutional Meeting
McKnight Brain Research Foundation and Evelyn F. McKnight Brain Institutes
Virtually at the University of Miami Evelyn F. McKnight Brain Institute

April 28th, 2021 1:00PM-5:00PM ET
April 29th, 2021 1:00PM-5:00PM ET



Wednesday, April 28, 2021


1:00pm – 1:30pm         Welcome

  • Ralph L. Sacco, M.D. Executive Director of U Miami MBI & Chair of Neurology
  • Henri R. Ford, M.D., M.H.A. Dean and Chief Academic Officer, University of Miami Miller School of Medicine


  • Michael L. Dockery, M.D. Chair, Board of Trustees, McKnight Brain Research Foundation, Building on MBRF History to Forge the Future


                                       Introduction to Program and Meeting Overview

  • Tatjana Rundek, M.D., Ph.D. Scientific Director of Evelyn F. McKnight Brain Institute



  1:30pm – 3:30pm        Moderators: Ronald Lazar, Ph.D. (UAB) and Tatjana Rundek, M.D., Ph.D. (UM)


1:30pm – 2:30pm        McKnight Brain Aging Registry (MBAR)

                                           Moderator: Ronald Lazar, Ph.D.


1:30pm – 1:45pm        Successful Living Among the Oldest Old

                                       Bonnie Levin, Ph.D. (UM)


1:45pm – 2:00pm        Brain Network Organization in the Oldest Old

                                       Kristina M. Visscher, Ph.D. (UAB)

2:00pm – 2:15pm        Physical Activity and Brain Health in the Oldest Old

                                     Gene E. Alexander, Ph.D. (UA)


2:15pm – 2:30pm        Discussion

2:30pm – 3:30pm       MBRF Cognitive Aging and Memory Interventional Core Pilot Projects

                                         Moderator: Bonnie Levin, Ph.D.


2:30pm – 2:45pm       Transcutaneous Vagal Nerve Stimulation and Cognitive Training to Enhance

                                   Cognitive Performance in Healthy Older Adults

                                   John B. Williamson, Ph.D. (UF, UA)


2:45pm – 3:00pm       Detecting Deceptive Information in Scamming Paradigms: A Training Intervention

                                       Natalie Ebner, Ph.D. (UF, UM, UA)


3:00pm – 3:15pm       Transcranial Near Infrared Stimulation (NIR-NIH)

                                      Dawn Bowers, Ph.D. (UF, UA)


3:15pm – 3:30pm       Announcement of new MBRF Pilot awards

                                     Bonnie Levin, Ph.D. and Ronald Lazar, Ph.D.


3:30pm – 3:45pm       Break


Session I Recording




SESSION II                   Cognitive Aging – Clinical and translational Interventions AND

3:45pm – 5:05pm         COLLABORATIONS

                                    Moderator: Thomas C. Foster, Ph.D. (UF)


3:45pm – 4:05pm         The Precision Aging Network

         Lee Ryan, Ph.D. (UA)


4:05pm – 4:25pm        Exercise for Brain Health

Joyce Gomes-Osman, P.T., Ph.D. (UM)


4:25pm – 4:45pm       The Multi-Site ACT Study

Adam Woods, Ph.D. (UF)


4:45pm – 5:05pm        Nonpharmacological Approaches for Improving Cognitive Decline in Aging

                                    Sara Burke, Ph.D. (UF)


5:05pm                        Meeting Adjourns First Day


Session II Recording


Thursday, April 29, 2021

11:30am – 12:45pm    MBRF Board of Trustees ‘Lunch’ with MBI Directors



1:00pm – 2:20pm        Moderator: Ralph L. Sacco, M.D. (UM)


1:00pm – 1:20pm        MindCrowd and Aging Research

Matthew J.  Huentelman, Ph.D. (UA)


1:20pm – 1:40pm        Genetics and Epigenetics of Cognitive Aging

Susan Blanton, Ph.D. (UM)


1:40pm – 2:00pm        Presurgery Cognitive Status as a Predictor of Post-Operative Delirium in Older Adults

Roy Martin, Ph.D. (UAB)


2:00pm – 2:20pm        Sensitive Cognitive Stress Test

David Loewenstein, Ph.D. (UM)


Session III Recording

SESSION IV                 DATA BLITZ

2:20pm – 3:20pm        Moderator: Kristina Visscher, Ph.D. (UAB)


2:20pm – 2:35pm        Molecular Mechanisms for Better than Expected Cognition

Thomas C. Foster, Ph.D. (UF)


2:35pm – 2:50pm        Normal Aging and the Sharing of Autobiographical Memories

Matthew Grilli, Ph.D. (UA)


2:50pm – 3:05pm        Aging in Puerto Rico: Paradox or Disparity?

Michael Crowe, Ph.D. (UAB)


3:05pm – 3:20pm        Modifying Pathways for the Association Between Sleep Phenotypes and Neurocognitive Decline in the Hispanic Community Health Study/Study of Latinos (HCHS/SOL)

Sonya Kaur, Ph.D. (UM)


3:20pm – 3:30pm        Break


Session IV Recording


3:30pm – 4:30pm        Moderator: Carol Barnes, Ph.D. (UA)


3:30pm – 4:00pm        Research Opportunities for Collaborative Grants and Research Training at NIA

Molly V. Wagster, Ph.D.

Chief, Behavioral & Systems Neuroscience Branch

Division of Neuroscience, National Institute on Aging


4:00pm – 4:30pm        Introduction of McKnight Clinical Translational Research Scholars

                                    Richard Isaacson, M.D. (MBRF Trustee)

                                    Madhav Thambisetty, M.D., Ph.D. (MBRF Trustee)


The 2018-20  Scholars will give 5  minute presentations. All others will be asked to introduce themselves and their projects.


           2018-20 Scholars

                                    Kimberly Albert, Ph.D., Vanderbilt (Mentor: Paul Newhouse, M.D.)

Brice McConell, M.D. Ph.D., U Colorado (Mentor: Benzi Kluger, M.D., M.S.)


2019-21 Scholars

Sedaghat Sanaz, Ph.D., Northwestern (Mentors: Farzaneh Sorond, M.D. and Denise M. Scholtens, Ph.D.)

Christian Camargo, M.D., UM (Mentor: Tatjana Rundek, M.D., Ph.D.)


2020-22 Scholars

Sarah Getz, Ph.D., UM (Mentors: Bonnie Levin, Ph.D. and Tatjana Rundek, M.D., Ph.D.)

Bryan Baxter, Ph.D., Harvard (Mentor: Dara Manoach, Ph.D.)


New 2021-23 AAN/MBRF Scholars will be announced by the MBRF Trustees




4:30pm – 5:00pm        Closing Remarks & Announcement of 2022 Annual Inter-Institutional Meeting

Ralph L. Sacco, M.D., Michael L. Dockery, M.D., Carol Barnes, Ph.D.


5:00pm                        Meeting Adjourns


Session V Recording