Christopher J. Czura, PhD

This October in Napa, Neuromodulation: The Science and NYC Neuromodulation (NTS/NYN) will bring together the new and exciting pre-clinical and clinical sciences of invasive and non-invasive neuromodulation.  NTS/NYN has gathered an impressive faculty that includes well-known scientists and engineers from around the world.

We recently interviewed Chris Czura on the importance of gathering top neuroscientists, clinicians, and neuro-engineers to Napa Valley. Dr. Czura is Co-Founder and Chief Scientist of Convergent Medical Technologies. The company’s mission is to create thoughtful solutions through innovation.  He is a molecular biologist who has been studying vagus nerve stimulation for the past 20 years. He has made seminal discoveries in neural control of bleeding and inflammation. Results of his research have supported the development of two bioelectronic medicine startup companies, the first of which recently closed Series D with total funding in excess of $80m to commercialize a proprietary implantable vagus nerve stimulator to treat rheumatoid arthritis. The second company is currently enrolling subjects for a clinical trial of a proprietary non-invasive vagus nerve stimulator to treat postpartum hemorrhage.

Dr. Czura served as Vice President of Scientific Affairs at the Feinstein Institute for Medical Research (Northwell Health, Manhasset, NY), overseeing all aspects of laboratory operations, the annual budget, and construction and renovation projects. He coordinated strategic plan development with the President and the Board of Directors, and represented the research portfolio to senior leadership of Northwell Health.

He has authored or co-authored over 100 peer-reviewed papers, book chapters and meeting abstracts, and presented to audiences in science, military, industry, venture capital and philanthropy. He was awarded one international patent and has a second patent pending, and has raised over $50 million in sponsored research agreements and laboratory construction grants.

Dr. Czura believes that Neuromodulation: The Science (NTS) builds a deeper understanding of the molecular and cellular mechanisms of neuromodulation, both in nerves and in target organs, is essential to develop more specific and more effective technologies for a broader range of indications. He appreciates that NTS has maintained this approach, with a faculty that brings increasingly more sophisticated insights year over year.

“The current state of the art in bioelectronic medicine – neuromodulation to affect end-organ function – is limited by the fact that current devices do not “speak the language” of nerves. We apply stimulation, and tune parameters and waveforms by looking at effects on biomarkers. The work of decoding neural signals with the help of artificial intelligence technologies will help us design and apply more intelligent and rational stimulation patterns,” said Dr. Czura.

Dr. Czura’s session on bioelectronic medicine will focus on uses of neuromodulation in which precise cellular targets in the end-organ are known, and the mechanisms of neurotransmitter influence on the activity of those cells has been, or is being, characterized. For example, vagus nerve stimulation can modulate the activity of neutrophils, monocytes, lymphocytes, and platelets.

Speakers will focus on how regulation of these cell types with vagus nerve stimulation can be used therapeutically. Additionally, an approach utilizing external neurostimulation to modulate the autonomic and dopaminergic systems to alleviate symptoms of substance withdrawal and restore brain reward allostasis.

Finally, this session will also cover an emerging field in bioelectronic medicine: decoding afferent vagus nerve signals to understand physiology at exquisite detail: for example, determine the status of the immune system, or determine blood glucose levels. This information will allow the development of closed-loop technologies that can respond to physiological changes in real time.

NTSNYC addresses cutting-edge science and technology for patient care including treatment of pain, disease, neurological and psychiatric disorders. The conference takes place during the harvest season in Napa Valley, commonly known as “the Crush”.

Don’t miss the Joint Meeting of Neuromodulation: The Science & NYC Neuromodulation, Oct 3-6, 2019Register today.

View the agenda: Here.