2012 Eating Disorder Research Society Recap

The 2012 conference for the Eating Disorder Research Society (EDRS) was held from September 20-22 in Porto, Portugal, and several members of the Bulik lab were fortunate enough to attend and present. This year’s conference was a great opportunity for members of the worldwide scientific community to disseminate and discuss the field’s most leading-edge research in addition to enjoying all that Porto had to offer. Short paper sessions and poster presentation topics spanned from epidemiology, classification, and assessment (with an emphasis on DSM-5 and the changes it will bring about) to neuropsychology and treatment and prevention. Dr. Hans Hoek kicked off the conference with an opening lecture focused on the future of epidemiological research, and several other investigators presented their recent work including: Dr. James Mitchell (eating disorders after bariatric surgery) and Dr. Ruth Striegel (work productivity in obesity and binge eating). Both senior and junior investigators were present to contribute to discussion about the state of the field and the ways in which current efforts are moving us forward into the next generation of research. In this regard, it was a unique experience to witness the collaboration between scientists (particularly across disciplines) in an effort to further understand and better treat eating disorders. The closing session embodied the multidisciplinary nature of the field as UNC’s Dr. Patrick Sullivan gave a keynote on genetics in psychiatric disorders and how recent findings might be applied to eating disorders, particularly AN. UNC’s Dr. Bulik followed him with an update on the latest results from the Wellcome Trust-funded Genetic Consortium for Anorexia Nervosa study. Between the research presentations and the lively discussion at the conference dinner reception, the 2012 EDRS conference was a great success during which the field’s experts could advance current knowledge while enjoying the scenic beauty of Porto!

A list of presentations and posters from the UNC Group follows:

  1. Bulik, C.M., Collier, D., Zeggini, E., Sullivan, P.F., Boraska, V., Genomewide Association Study for anorexia nervosa Consortium, WTCCC3 AN Consortium. “WTCCC3 and GCAN: A genomewide scan for anorexia nervosa.” Eating Disorders Research Society, Porto, Portugal (September, 2012).
  2. Baker, J.H., Thornton, L.M., Runfola, C., Lichtenstein, P., Bulik, C.M. “Body Dissatisfaction in Adolescent Boys.” (Poster) Eating Disorder Research Society, Porto, Portugal (September, 2012).
  3. Runfola, C.D., Von Holle, A., Peat, C.M., Gagne, D.A., Brownley, K.A., Hofmeier, S.M., Bulik, C.M. “Characteristics of women with body size satisfaction at midlife: Results of the gender and body image study” (GABI). (Poster) Eating Disorder Research Society, Porto, Portugal (September, 2012).
  4. Trace, S.E., Thornton, L.M., Mazzeo, S.E., Bergin, J.E., Maxwell, M., Lichtenstein, P., Pedersen, N.L., Bulik, CM. “A comparison of personality characteristics, psychiatric comorbidity and stressful life events in monozygotic twins discordant for anorexia nervosa.” (Poster) Eating Disorder Research Society, Porto, Portugal (September, 2012).

By: Dr. Christine Peat