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International Conference on Bipolar Disorder Highlights Latest Research from Top Scientists​

PITTSBURGH, June 23, 2009 – The Eighth International Conference on Bipolar Disorder, held every two years, is the only venue in the world devoted exclusively to highlighting new research into understanding bipolar disorder, which affects both adults and children, devastates families, accounts for nearly half of all suicides in the United States, and costs billions of dollars in medical bills, missed work and lower productivity each year. The world’s leading scientists will touch upon varying aspects of bipolar disorder from the latest clinical trials and neuroscience, to circadian rhythms, suicide and treatment therapies.

The conference will be held June 25 to 27 at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center in Pittsburgh and is being sponsored by the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine and Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic of UPMC.

To accommodate media, a press room will be located in Rooms 310-311 of the convention center and will be open from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., on Thursday, June 25 and Friday, June 26. The phone number in the press room will be (412) 325-6065.

Conference highlights include:

8:45 a.m., Thursday, June 25

How Genetics and Circadian Rhythms Affect Bipolar Disorder – Genetics and circadian rhythms are believed to play a vital role in the development of bipolar disorder. Researchers from the University of Pittsburgh, the Scientific Institute and University Vita-Salute San Raffaele in Italy, the University of California, Berkeley, the University of Paris and the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center will discuss their latest findings in identifying genes linked to bipolar disorder and how circadian rhythms affect the diagnosis and treatment of the disease.

1 p.m., Thursday, June 25

Special Report from National Institute of Mental Health – Thomas R. Insel, M.D., director of the National Institute of Mental Health, will discuss the Institute’s vision of research, which includes revolutionary technologies and evolutionary practices that can transform treatments and services for people with bipolar disorder.

8:45 a.m., Friday, June 26

Development and Neuroimaging of Bipolar Disorder – Identifying the neural biomarkers of bipolar disorder is an important step toward the long-term goal of improving diagnostic accuracy and treatment of this disease. Researchers from UCLA, Yale University, the National Institute of Mental Health and the University of Pittsburgh will discuss the use of neuroimaging techniques to identify abnormalities in the brain to better diagnose bipolar disorder and trace development of the disease throughout adolescence.

1 p.m., Friday, June 26

Diagnosis and Treatment of Bipolar Disorder – Top researchers and clinicians will present the latest information about diagnosis of and new treatments for bipolar disorder, the mixed states of the disease, and how it presents itself in children and adolescents.

1 p.m., Saturday, June 27

Diagnosis Roundtable and DSM-V Discussion – Participants in a diagnosis roundtable will discuss presentations from the previous two days and how they will be taken into account as key issues for the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM-V) Workgroup on Mood Disorders. David J. Kupfer, M.D., Thomas P. Detre Professor and chairman of the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, serves as chairman of the DSM-V taskforce, whose primary goal is to revise the DSM to fully incorporate research from the past two decades in an attempt to build an empirical foundation from multiple scientific disciplines.

For more information about the meeting, to request abstracts, register as press or learn more about press briefings, please contact Megan Grote Quatrini at GroteME@upmc.edu, by cell phone at (412) 417-1639 or call UPMC Media Relations at (412) 647-3555. The preliminary scientific program and hotel information are available at www.8thbipolar.org

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