PhD students in the clinic

A record number of 65 doctoral students participated in this year’s annual ZNZ PhD Retreat in the Neurorehabilitation Clinic Valens in May. Students of the ZNZ are coming from diverse backgrounds like biology, medicine, engineering, pharmacology, physics and psychology and introduce their research projects to each other in talk and posters.

The goal of the retreat is that participants find inspiration for their own work and possibly combine forces to improve the outcomes of their projects. It is equally important that students get a live experience of the clinic with its patients and the current challenges in neurorehabilitation.

The Clinic Valens provides treatment annually to 840 stroke, 590 MS, 230 Parkinson and 180 brain injury patients. In addition to standard physical and occupational therapies, the clinic supplements its portfolio of interventions with robotics and virtual reality. Dr. Roman Gonzenbach, the head of the Clinic, identified today’s main challenges for neurorehabilitation:

  • Breakthroughs are needed to substantially improve recovery in chronic disease phase
  • Correct dosage for rehabilitation therapies are often not known
  • High demand for effective economical therapies, else healthcare payers will not finance
  • More efforts in prevention of neurological disease are needed and a better understanding of disease mechanisms

Prof. Hans Lassmann, a renowned expert in MS pathology of the Medical University of Vienna, gave an overview of the entire spectrum of inflammatory demyelinating diseases. Prof. Daniel Razansky, who recently joined the ZNZ, summarized his work on optoacoustic brain imaging, a very recent technology, which already delivers impressive results.
(see research news in this Newsletter and Super-vision of the brain Spotlight)

See the program of the Retreat

Impressions of the Retreat

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Drone images and video, courtesy Dmitry Zendrikov