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Sunday, 12 June


Arrival of Scholars and Faculty at the Certosa di Pontignano




A short guided tour through the Certosa, its Chapel, Cloisters and Garden


Opening Ceremony - Welcome Addresses


The European Pain School
Anna Maria Aloisi, School Director (Siena, Italy)


Welcome by the President of Medical School, University of Siena


The FENS/IBRO Neurosciences School Programme
Deolinda Lima, Liaison Officer of the School Committee (Univ. of Porto)


The International Association for the Study of Pain (IASP)
Eija Kalso, IASP President (Helsinki, Finland)


Grünenthal for Pain
Gaby Erkens, Scientific Relations Management Grunenthal GmbH (Aachen, Germany)


Pain Science and Medicine
Marshall Devor (The Hebrew University, Jerusalem, Israel)


Monasteries, the medieval forerunners of Universities and Hospitals
Manfred Zimmermann (Univ. of Heidelberg, Germany)


The Certosa di Pontignano
Giancarlo Carli (Univ. of Siena, Italy)


Siena art exhibition of facial expression of pain
Fabrizio Benedetti (Univ. of Turin, Italy)


Scholars’ self-introduction
to be continued informally at the subsequent wine reception and dinner

Monday, 13 June


Session II

Lecture 1

Evolution of pain concepts
Manfred Zimmermann (Heidelberg, Germany)

Oral Presentations by Scholars

Neuronal excitability and synaptic plasticity of cortical neurons in neuropathic pain
Sigrid Marie Blom (Bern, Switzerland)

Extracellular signal-regulated kinase and tyrosine hydroxylase expression in locus coeruleus upon a chronic inflammatory pain condition
Gisela Borges (Cádiz, Spain)

Corticotropin-releasing factor in the rat amygdala differentially influences sensory-discriminative and emotional-like pain response in peripheral neuropathy
Nora Bourbia (Helsinki, Finland)

Pain perception and tolerance in patients with frontotemporal dementia
Elisa Carlino (Turin, Italy)

Lecture 2

Neuronal excitability and hyperexcitability: cellular mechanisms and genetic determinants
Marshall Devor (Jerusalem, Israel)


Session III

Lecture 3

Painful or not? Perceptual decision-making in the context of pain
Katja Wiech (Oxford, United Kingdom)

Oral Presentations by Scholars

The expression pattern of HCN2 ion channel in dorsal root ganglion neurons and its role in inflammatory and neuropathic pain
Lubin Chen (Cambridge, United Kingdom)

Brain mechanisms of opiates potentiation with hypnosis
Yann Cojan (Geneva, Switzerland)

Chemerin modulation of potentiated primary afferent input to lamina I neurokinin 1 receptor expressing rat spinal cord neurons
Allen Dickie (Edinburgh , United Kingdom)

Differential cerebral fMRI patterns associated with chemically induced muscle pain in female fibromyalgia patients and healthy controls
Martin Diers (Mannheim, Germany)

Lecture 4

Placebo – what is behind it?
Fabrizio Benedetti (Turin, Italy)

Evening Session

Behavioral Tests & Tools in Pain Research
A hands-on presentation of equipment for experimental pain research
Lead by Federico Montechiaro, PhD
Ugo Basile Biological Research Apparatus, Comerio, Italy

Tuesday, 14 June


Session IV

Lecture 5

Higher-level cognitive functions and pain
Katja Wiech (Oxford, United Kingdom)

Oral Presentations by Scholars

Prostaglandin E2 directly activates cultured rat dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons
Adina-Marinela Drumea (Branesti, Romania)

Bone pain associated with vitamin D deficiency - a translational study
Darshana Durup (Copenhagen, Denmark)

Lipid rafts control P2X3 receptor distribution and function in trigeminal sensory neurons of a genetic mouse model of migraine
Aswini Gnanasekaran (Trieste, Italy)

The antihyperalgesic effect of Tapentadol in diabetic neuropathic mice results from a synergistic interaction of spinal and supraspinal mechanisms
Torsten Hertrampf (Aachen, Germany)

Lecture 6

Placebo – new therapeutic power
Fabrizio Benedetti (Turin, Italy)


Session V

Lecture 7

Drugs for Pain – what are the molecules?
Eija Kalso (Helsinki, Finland)

Oral Presentations by Scholars

Don’t look and it won’t hurt: how viewing a needle pricking one’s body influences pain perception
Marion Höfle (Hamburg, Germany)

Neurochemistry of chronic pain: similarities and differences in pervasive and local pain
Aygul Khusnullina (Bangor, United Kingdom)

Effect of local and intravenous lidocaine on ongoing activity in injured afferent nerve fibers
Irina Kirillova (Kiel, Germany)

Biological and molecular characteristic of PK20 opioid-neurotensin hybrid peptide
Patrycja Kleczkowska (Warsaw, Poland)

Lecture 8

Pain and Consciousness
Marshall Devor (Jerusalem, Israel)

Evening session

Group Session to prepare a “controversial debate” on Thursday morning

Wednesday, 15 June


Session VI

Lecture 9

Steroids – controlling pain in the backstage of the brain
Anna Maria Aloisi (Siena, Italy)

Oral Presentations by Scholars

Enhanced CGRP expression in the spinal nociceptive circuit after neonatal repetitive needle pricking: limited effects on early inflammatory pain hypersensitivity later in life
Liesbeth Knaepen (Maastricht, Netherlands)

Tamoxifen-inducible Advillin-CreERT2 recombinase activity in nociceptive neurons of dorsal root ganglia
Joanne Lau (London, United Kingdom)

Reduced inflammatory pain hypersensitivity with intact acute pain behaviour in mice deficient in tetrahydrobiopterin
Arafat Nasser (Glostrup, Denmark)

Neurobiology of value integration: How pain impacts reward valuation
Soyoung Park (Berlin, Germany)

Lecture 10

The brain’s self control for pain: the built-in inhibitory systems
Manfred Zimmermann (Heidelberg, Germany)


Session VII

Lecture 11

Pain and the receptors for pepper in the nervous system
János Szolcsányi (Pecs, Hungary)

Special Interactive Workshop of Scholars and Faculty

Ethical motivations and limitations of pain research and treatment – the new European guidelines
Introduction: Manfred Zimmermann (Heidelberg, Germany)

How to write a successful grant application?
Introduction: Deolinda Lima (Porto, Portugal)

Thursday, 16 June


Session VIII

Lecture 12

Brainstem descending pain control
Deolinda Lima (Porto, Portugal)

Oral Presentations by Scholars

Significance of the IL-6 signal transducer gp130 for neuronal regeneration
Serena Quarta (Innsbruck, Austria)

Fear or anxiety, what hurts more?
Philipp Reicherts (Würzburg, Germany)

Lecture 13

Attention, vigilance and the processing of nociceptive events
Luis Garcia-Larrea (Lyon, France)

Scholars debate

Moderator: Marshall Devor (Jerusalem, Israel)

For each of the following topics two groups will be formed of Scholars representing controversial positions in a short but hot debate:

If pain is not treated early, does it undergo a transition to chronicity which makes it much more difficult to treat?

Is it true that pain perception is a result of network activity in the cortical pain matrix?


Excursion to Siena Old Town


Bus departs from the Certosa


Guided tour to historical Siena, visit of Cathedral and City Hall


Visit of the Art exhibition on the facial expression of pain, Sala Rosa, Aperitif


Free time in Siena

Friday, 17 June


Session IX

Lecture 14

Mood and attention differentially control pain
Catherine Bushnell (Montreal, Canada)

Oral Presentations by Scholars

VGLUT2-mediated glutamatergic transmission is essential for sensory signaling in primary afferent neurons
Katarzyna Rogoz (Uppsala, Sweden)

Alpha7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptors are expressed and axonally transported by peptidergic neurons of adult rat dorsal root ganglion
Irina Shelukhina (Moscow, Russian Federation)

The analgesic effect of crossing the hands
Diana Torta (Turin, Italy)

Chronic intermittent psycho-social stress induces visceral hyperalgesia: towards a mouse model of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
Monica Tramullas (Cork, Ireland)

Lecture 15

Chronic pain and quality of life
Giancarlo Carli (Siena, Italy)


Session X

Lecture 16

The nature and nurture of pain, sex differences
Jeffrey Mogil (Montreal, Canada)

Oral Presentations by Scholars

Perceptual maps of the body: from the lab to the pain clinic
Jörg Trojan (Mannheim, Germany)

The role of body awareness in pain: an investigation using the rubber hand illusion
Camila Valenzuela-Moguillansky (Paris, France)

Challenges in clinical drug development of analgesics - monitoring of specific potential organ toxicity
Katharina Salome Wenge (Aachen, Germany)

Microglial/Macrophage GRK2 determines duration of peripheral IL-1ß-induced hyperalgesia: contribution of spinal cord CX3CR1, p38 and IL-1 signaling
Hanneke Lucia Dorothea Maria Willemen (Utrecht, Netherlands)

Lecture 17

17. Cortex stimulation for pain
Luis Garcia-Larrea (Lyon, France)

Saturday, 18 June


Session XI

Lecture 18

What’s wrong with animal models of pain?
Jeffrey Mogil (Montreal, Canada)

Lecture 19

New vistas on pain from neuroimaging studies?
Catherine Bushnell (Montreal, Canada)

Evaluations of the European Pain School by Scholars and Faculty – the FENS/IBRO questionnaire


Farewell Session


Bus Transfer to Rapolano Terme, a hot mineral water Spa in Tuscany


Stay and relax at “Terme Antica Querciolaia”, bathing in the waters of a hot mineral spring used by the ancient Romans


Farewell dinner and party in the Terme restaurant


Bus return to the Certosa di Pontignano

Sunday, 19 June




Important dates

  • Applications open
    28 December 2010
  • Notification of selections
    28 March 2011



  • Applications
    4 March 2011
  • Attendance confirmation
    4 April 2011
  • Payment
    30 April 2011


School Board

Anna Maria Aloisi
Giancarlo Carli
Marshall Devor
Manfred Zimmermann