A short history of WONOEP
Basic science in the ILAE was boosted greatly by the creation of the Commission on Neurobiology in 1988, and by the organisation of the Workshops on Neurobiology of Epilepsy (WONOEP).
WONOEP grew out of the Workshops on Neurotransmitters in Epilepsy (WONIEP), which were initially independent of the ILAE and were first held in Paris in 1981 under the leadership of Paolo Morselli and Kenneth Lloyd. The first workshop was entirely devoted to a focus on GABA – it was sponsored by Synthélabo when that firm was developing progabide, an analog and prodrug of GABA. WONIEP II was held in San Antonio, Texas, in 1983, and included papers on catecholamines, opioids, excitatory amino acids and neuropeptides and was organized by professors Ruggero Fariello and “Pete” Engel. At the WONIEP III meeting in 1985, held at Soverato, in Calabria, Italy, it became apparent that GABA had certain proconvulsant, as well as anticonvulsant, properties, and that simple GABAergic drugs may not be as effective in suppressing seizures clinically as drugs working on other neurotransmitter systems. These findings were disappointing to the sponsor (Synthélabo), at the same time emphasizing the need for scientific independence for the workshop and financial independence from a single sponsor with an “agenda!”
WONIEP IV was held in Stresa, Italy, and it was then that the request was made to the ILAE to create a Commission on Neurobiology which would continue the workshops under the leadership of the ILAE (using the new title – WONOEP) and also to organize scientific sessions and short courses on basic research at the international meetings and other venues outside the International Epilepsy Congress. This important transition (credit to Pete Engel for proposing the idea, and Fritz Dreifuss for implementing it in his capacity as the President of ILAE) was crucial to expanding the scope of scientific activities under the ILAE banner, providing scientific independence to the workshops and expanding offerings to special short courses guided by the Commission on Neurobiolgy.
The first ILAE-supported “WONOEP” was held in 1991 in Salvador, Brazil, and since then 11 further WONOEPs have been held preceding international congresses, each dealing with important areas of basic research in epilepsy. Similarly, basic science has featured strongly at ILAE congresses and meetings, and basic scientists have become active members of the ILAE community.
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Information on previous workshops
XIII. Workshop on Neurobiology of Epilepsy (WONOEP 2015): "Biomarkers of Epilepsy"
Where: Heybeliada Island, Istanbul, Turkey.
When: 08/31/2015 until 09/04/2015
WONOEP 2015 was organized by ILAE Neurobiology Commission & WONOEP task force. Scientific Organizing Committee: Katja Kobow, Raman Sankar, Marco de Curtis, Filiz Onat, and Candan Gürses.
The main topic of WONOEP XII was "Biomarkers of epilepsy".
Investigations from the full spectrum of potential biomarkers were considered, including:
- Biomarkers of epileptogenesis and ictogenesis
- Biomarkers of brain injury and tissue reorganization
- Imaging biomarkers
- Peripheral biomarkers
- Biomarkers of co-morbidities
2015 WONOEP • Heybeliada Istanbul
Reviews under construction to be published in Epilepsia:
- Jozwiak, Loeb et al., WONOEP appraisal: epilepsy biomarkers at the crossroads with the clinic
- Federico, van Vliet et al., WONOEP appraisal: imaging biomarkers in epilepsy
- Onat, Friedmann, Ravizza et al., WONOEP appraisal: biomarkers of comorbidities
- Patel, Walker et al., WONOEP appraisal: Peripheral biomarkers in epilepsy
XII. Workshop on Neurobiology of Epilepsy (WONOEP 2013): "New Technologies to Study the Epileptic Brain"
Where: Lake Dupuis in the Laurentian Mountains, Quebec, Canada.
When: 06/19/2013 until 06/22/2013
WONOEP 2013 was organized by ILAE Neurobiology Commission & WONOEP task force. Scientific Organizing Committee: Massimo Avoli, Marco de Curtis, Astrid Nehlig, Jeff Noebels, and Kevin Staley.
The main topic of WONOEP XII was "New Technologies to Study the Epileptic Brain".
Investigations from the full spectrum of applied technologies were considered, including:
- metabolic and functional imaging
- neurovascular imaging
- system biology and neural stem cell transplantation
- in vivo electrophysiology and imaging
- computational neuroscience
Reviews published in Epilepsia:
L. Mantoan Ritter, P. Golshani, K. Takahashi, S. Dufour, T. Valiante, M. Kokaia. WONOEP appraisal: optogenetic tools to suppress seizures and explore the mechanisms of epileptogenesis. Abstract | Full text
E. Rossignol, K. Kobow, M. Simonato, JA. Loeb, T. Grisar, KL. Gilby, J. Vinet, SD. Kadam, AJ. Becker WONOEP appraisal: new genetic approaches to study the epileptic brain. Abstract | Full text
S. Dedeurwaerdere, SR. Shultz, P. Federico, J. Engel, Jr. WONOEP appraisal: New systemic functional imaging technologies to study the brain in experimental models of epilepsy. Abstract | Full text
XI. Workshop on Neurobiology of Epilepsy (WONOEP 2011): "Finding novel mechanisms for epilepsy therapy”
Where: Grottaferrata, Italy.
WONOEP 2011 was organized by ILAE Neurobiology Commission & WONOEP task force. Scientific Organizing Committee: Marco de Curtis, Raman Sankar, Annamaria Vezzani, Astrid Nehlig, and Jeff Noebels. The main topic of WONOEP XI was “Finding novel mechanisms for epilepsy therapy”.
The following Panel Session were organized to discuss most recent developments on new targets and mechanisms relevant to treatment:
- preclinical screening strategies and experimental trial design
- metabolic and functional imaging
- antiepileptogenesis targets
- antiinflammatory targets
- channels, synapses, receptors, and ions as new targets
Reviews published in Epilepsia:
de Curtis M, Nehlig A, Noebels J, Sankar R, Vezzani A. WONOEP XI: Workshop Summary by the Scientific Organizing Committee. Epilepsia 2012;53:1275-6.
Kobow K, Auvin S, Jensen F, LÃ¶scher W, Mody I, Potschka H, Prince D, Sierra A, Simonato M, PitkÃ¤nen A, Nehlig A, Rho JM. Finding a better drug for epilepsy: antiepileptogenesis targets. Epilepsia 2012; 53(11):1868-76. Abstract | Full Text
Dedeurwaerdere S, Friedman A, Fabene PF, Mazarati A, Murashima YL, Vezzani A, Baram TZ. Finding a better drug for epilepsy: antiinflammatory targets. Epilepsia 2012; 53(7):1113-8. Abstract | Full Text
Galanopoulou AS, Gorter JA, Cepeda C. Finding a better drug for epilepsy: the mTOR pathway as an antiepileptogenic target. Epilepsia 2012; 53(7):1119-30. Abstract | Full Text
Simonato M, Löscher W, Cole AJ, Dudek FE, Engel J Jr, Kaminski RM, Loeb JA, Scharfman H, Staley KJ, Velíšek L, Klitgaard H. Finding a better drug for epilepsy: preclinical screening strategies and experimental trial design. Epilepsia 2012; 53(11):1860-7. Abstract | Full Text
X. Workshop on the Neurobiology of Epilepsy (WONOEP 2009): "Novel therapeutic approaches to epileptogenesis"
IX. Workshop on the Neurobiology of Epilepsy (WONOEP 2007): "The transition from the interictal to the ictal state"
Where: Teluk Nibong, Langkawi Island, Malaysia
Organized by Marco de Curtis, Yoshio Murashima, Raman Sankar
Proceedings published in a single article in a regular issue of Epilepsia:
de Curtis M, Murashima Y, Sankar R. 9th Workshop on the Neurobiology of Epilepsy (WONOEP IX): the transition from the interictal to the ictal state (Teluk Nibong, Langkawi Island, Malaysia, July 4-7, 2007). Epilepsia 2008;49(8):1475-9.
VIII. Workshop on the Neurobiology of Epilepsy (WONOEP 2005): "Developmental issues of epilepsy"
VII. Workshop on the Neurobiology of Epilepsy (WONOEP 2003): "Developmental programs in epileptogenesis"
VI. Workshop on the Neurobiology of Epilepsy (WONOEP 2001): "Ictogenesis and Epileptogenesis"
V. Workshop on the Neurobiology of Epilepsy (WONOEP 1999): "Brain plasticity and epilepsy"