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A very Happy New Year to all Neonatal Society Members! The Neonatal Society is now in its 47th year and continues to thrive.

Past meetings
Since the last newsletter of April 2005, we have had two very successful meetings.

Summer Meeting, Bristol
This was a tremendous meeting in a lovely setting and congratulations to Dr Anoo Jain who was the local organiser. During the 2 day meeting there were four invited speakers.

The Tizard lecture
Professor Marianne Thoresen: Hypothermia: from anecdote to brain protection

The other key note speakers were:
Professor Mark Gardiner: What has the human genome project done for neonatology?
Professor Peter Soothill: Advances in non-invasive fetal medicine
Professor Dieter Wolke: Psychological development of extremely preterm (<26 weeks) and not so preterm (27-35 weeks) children – the big picture

Young Investigator Prize winner:
Dr Nigel Kennea: Human Mesenchymal stem Cells as Agents of Brain Repair

Autumn Meeting, RCOG, London
This was a very lively meeting with a variety of research topics covered and excellent discussions. The venue was excellent. In addition to the free papers there were two invited speakers:

2nd Widdowson Lecture (sponsored by Chiesi)
Professor Michael Symonds: Leptin – its role in adaptation at birth and later health and disease

Key note speaker
Professor Lex Doyle: Postnatal corticosteroids – where to now?

New president elect, secretaries and committee members
Congratulations to Professor Andrew Whitelaw who was elected “president elect” at the Autumn meeting. He will take over from Professor Andrew Wilkinson after the 2006 summer meeting. Dr Andy Lyon leaves the committee after serving as both Meetings and General secretary. We thank him for his tremendous support and hard work for the Society, in particular in developing and maintaining the Neonatal Society website. He has agreed, however, to cover the sabbatical leave of the future General Secretary (Dr Nikki Robertson) who will assume the post after the Summer meeting 2006. Dr Nikki Robertson moves on from Meetings Secretary to General Secretary and Dr Anoo Jain will take on the post of Meetings Secretary. Dr Alison Mostyn leaves the committee and Dr Alison Forhead will be the new committee member.

OBE awarded to original founder member of the Neonatal Society
Beryl Corner, lecturing in January 2006Beryl Corner, an original founding member of the Neonatal Society at the first meeting on April 24th, 1959, was awarded the OBE for services to neonatology in the 2006 New Year Honours. Beryl was the first consultant paediatrician in Bristol to be appointed specifically for neonatal care and she led the neonatal unit at Southmead from 1946. Beryl is in her nineties now and still attends perinatal meetings in Bristol. In the finest tradition of the Neonatal Society, she gave a lecture on comparative physiology on Wednesday January 4th 2006 at Southmead Hospital "Baby apes: just like us". She drew on her experience caring for more than 6 baby apes delivered at Bristol Zoo. This included one premature chimpanzee who was nursed in an incubator at Bristol Maternity Hospital.

Future meetings

This will be a unique year as the spring and summer meetings will both be one day events in London. The autumn meeting is later this year and will be a 2 day joint themed meeting in Cambridge in the winter.

Spring Meeting: 16th March. Venue: Jarvis Hall, Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA), 66 Portland Place, London

Summer Meeting: 29th June. Venue: RIBA

Winter Meeting: 12-13th Dec Venue: Churchill College, Cambridge
This is a joint meeting with the Nutrition Society and is a celebration to mark the Elsie Widdowson Centenary. The programme already looks tremendous with many leaders in the field contributing. Abstracts can be submitted through either the Neonatal Society or Nutritional Society and will be published in the respective journals.

Spring Meeting:15th March. Venue: RIBA

Summer Meeting: 28th-29th June. Venue: Portsmouth (host Richard Thwaites)

Autumn Meeting: 22nd November. Venue: Royal Society of Medicine, large lecture theatre

Future proposed summer meeting locations
2008 - Middlesborough - Sunil Sinha
2009 - Edinburgh - Andy Lyon

Maintaining number and standard of abstracts
The number of abstracts submitted has been increasing steadily
Spring meeting 2005 10
Summer Meeting 14
Autumn Meeting 15

Please encourage your juniors to attend, present research and join the society.

Publication of abstracts
2005 Spring Meeting (17th March 2005) Early Human Dev 2005;81:711-720

The 2005 Summer and Autumn Meeting abstracts are in press and I will let you know of their references in the next newsletter.

New members
The following have been elected to the Society:

Gopi Menon, Edinburgh
Giles Kendall, London
Geraldine Ng, London
Alan Groves, London
George Gavriel, London
Christina Malamateniou, London
Nigel Kennea, London

Nikki Robertson, Neonatal Society Meetings Secretary, 2003-2005

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