Affective Neuroscience Seminar with Jaak Panksepp and Doug Watt
This five-day seminar with Jaak Panksepp and Doug Watt will cover and update much of Jaak’s original research and theoretical work in affective neuroscience on prototype emotions, with emphasis on the implications of affective neuroscience for psychiatry and psychiatric disorders, particularly depression, far and away our most common emotional/psychiatric issue.
There will be an opening presentation on the neuroscience challenge to create a true theory of mind, and how such a theory might frame an understanding of affect as a foundational component of mind. Implications of affective neuroscience for a deeper understanding of other emergent affective phenomena such as empathy will also be reviewed in detail. There will be detailed and updated presentations on the neurobiology of the SEEKING system, its implications for addiction and depression, as well as detailed presentations on mammalian PLAY systems and separation distress (PANIC) systems and their implications for psychiatric disorders and therapies. There will also be a review of the evidence that the biology of aging (which is now progressively exposing a collection of core phenotypes that may drive all the diseases of aging) may have an underappreciated relevance for many if not most Axis I conditions. This review will summarize emerging evidence that lifestyle variables may modulate not only risk for these commonplace diseases of aging but also risk for multiple Axis I conditions, centrally including depression but also other Axis I conditions. Such considerations suggest that a much more concerted focus on prevention and on core lifestyle variables, most particularly mitigation of chronic social isolation, but also reductions of a classically pro-inflammatory Western diet, chronic sleep deprivation, and sedentary lifestyles should be front and center in our healthcare systems.
This December, we will distribute a more detailed seminar outline to all participants. At the time of seminar start up, we will additionally distribute ~ 100 PDFs on flash drives (including all the contributed talks but also extensive related literature).
Seminar participants will have a chance to meet Jaak Panksepp, and absorb some of his truly encyclopedic knowledge about the brain and its complex and distributed affective systems. His seminal and classic 1998 textbook, Affective Neuroscience, is still widely regarded as the most comprehensive synthesis of information about emotion and the brain available, and has been updated in the newer book, with Lucy Biven, The Archaeology of Mind – Neuro-Evolutionary Origins Of Human Emotions. For those who have never had a chance to interact with Jaak or hear him speak (or who already have and would appreciate further exposure to his work and thought), this is a unique and limited opportunity to meet and learn from one of the true giants of modern neuroscience and pioneers of affective neuroscience.
We have a limited block of up to 35 rooms at the Harborside Four Points Sheraton Hotel at a discounted rate of $139 per night ($30/night discount). We have space for the week of January 18th-22nd, 2016 inclusive. Seminar meetings will be held on all five weekdays, and we encourage seminar participants to check in Sunday night, January 17th, as the seminar begins at 9 AM and will run until 1 PM for five days.
We are now accepting $500 deposits to hold space in the seminar – those can be returned up to 45 days before the seminar. Seminar attendees will need to make their own reservation at the hotel. Refunds of full tuition will be possible until December 1st, 2015. We anticipate total seminar costs (seminar plus room charges) to be ~ $1195, not counting meal costs. We will also provide a coffee and sweet roll service in the mornings, and a catered dinner for all participants at the end of the seminar on Friday. Breakfast buffet is only $10 at the hotel. Afternoons will be available for sightseeing and traveling for participants, with many beautiful attractions in Southwest Florida, including extensive wildlife sanctuaries and the spectacular Florida Everglades.
Registration deadline: December 20th, 2015
Contact information: DrDougWatt@gmail.com. Email Doug Watt for more details, and to process registration.