Syringomyelia-Chiari 2018 International Symposium Organised by the Ann Conroy Trust, in association with Aesculap Academia.


July 17-20, 2018

Birmingham, UK.


Welcome to Birmingham





The symposium is co-organised by The Ann Conroy Trust, in association with Aesculap Academia.


The Ann Conroy Trust is Registered Charity No: 1165808.

We provide Support, Education and Research for patients living with Chiari Malformation, Syringomyelia and associated conditions.

F34 Assessing human brain tissue slices derived from cerebellar tonsillar tissue in Chiari patients, as a laboratory based injury model.


Sen J, Tickle JA, Adams C, Price RF, Harrisson S, Tzerakis N, Chari DM.




Use of animals to study CNS repair is controversial. Concerns relate to the potential for animal suffering and failure of animal models to predict human responses. This study aims to address these issues by attempting to create a reliable dish model of brain injury using human brain tissue.




Neuroscientists and neurosurgeons collaborated to grow slices of brain removed from Chiari malformation patients during decompressive surgery. Adult patients with Chiari malformation consented to take part in the investigation. In consented patients in whom it was deemed clinically beneficial to excise cerebellar tonsil tissue as part of the procedure, tissue was transferred directly to the laboratory for processing. Viability assessment and tissue responses to injury were investigated and compared with known in-vivo tissue responses.




Two patients thus far have been enrolled. Derived slices were maintained alive or showed viability in growth medium and survived for beyond 40 days (live/dead stain). The major neural cell types were detected and remained viable over this time period.




Human brain slices can survive ex-vivo. Major neural cells can be detected. Focal trauma elicited a stereotypical response. This model could have a significant impact in reducing animal usage and offer potential progress to testing novel therapeutic / neuroprotective interventions and also possibly ensure rapid progression of effective and safe therapies for CNS disorders, improving reliability and patient safety.