From December 9th to 12th 2020 the first virtual congress was held as the joint initiative of two Italian scientific societies, the Italian Association of Myology (AIM) and the Italian Association for the study of the Peripheral Nervous System (ASNP), on the occasion of two important anniversaries in the current year: the 20th AIM National Congress and the 10th Annual ASNP Congress.
Due to the restrictions related to the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic conditions, the congress was online with the participation of over 700 members working in the field of neuromuscular diseases.
The congress, in its joint form, showed high scientific value and proved to be an opportunity for comparison and exchange between two Scientific Societies that share many subjects matters. It dealt with the current challenges on neuromuscular diseases and covering several topics such as new gene therapies prospective, therapeutic approaches of dysimmune and paraneoplastic neuromuscular disorders, clinical and rehabilitative aspects of genetic and acquired myopathies and peripheral neuropathies, prevention and neonatal screening, innovations in diagnostics and possible biomarkers, pharmaco-economics and artificial intelligence in neuromuscular diseases, and imaging methods in diseases of the skeletal muscle and peripheral nerve. As part of the congress, a round table was held with clinicians and representatives of the Italian Patients Associations (Unione Italiana Lotta alla Distrofia Muscolare UILDM, Famiglie SMA, Parent Project, Altro Domani Onlus, ACMT Rete), as an important moment to share common initiatives and to network in improving the management and quality of life of patients and their families.
During the congress 174 abstracts have been collected and presented as oral communications or posters, often-including results of multicentric projects and collaborations at both national and international level. At the end of the congress, ten young participants received an award for their contributions: one of these was in memory of Prof. Giovanni Nigro, while the other prizes were funded by Patients Associations.
The proceedings of the congress are available on Neurological Sciences.
by Giulia Ricci and Gabriele Siciliano, Pisa University, on behalf of the Scientific Committee of the joint Congress AIM/ASNP
The 14th Meeting of the Mediterranean Society of Myology (MSM) is moved to 2021. Proposals to organize and host the event are welcome.
The 25th WMS congress was performed virtually between 28 September-2 October. Under normal circumstances this congress would have taken place in Halifax, in Canada, however evident pandemic conditions forbid a live meeting. And this decision had to be taken only recently after monitoring the situation closely. Despite shortcomings, end results were very pleasing. There were 2967 registrants for the main congress and 1761 for the classical pre-congress muscle course (which normally can accomodate 40 students). Seventy-six countries were represented, and this was another record breaking occasion. Every year, WMS meetings are based on three selected topics. At this congress ‘new developments in congenital muscle disease’, ‘gene modifiers and gene delivery in neuromusucular disorders’, and as par tradition ‘advances in the treatment of neuromuscular disorders’ were the main sections. The format and style of main presentations were in a pleasant hybrid format. There were live events, pre-recorded sessions, and the last day late breaking news again live. Social gatherings were also possible to enrich collboration as well as seeing old friends. All activites have been recorded. You can still view and follow this congress until 4 January 2021 from the congress site to include social interaction. Then the files will be transferred onto the WMS website.
by Haluk Topaloglu on behalf of WMS Executive Board