Special 2015 Annual Meeting Issue

5x7Weihs.jpg A Note of Welcome from the APS President
Karen L. Weihs, MD, APS President

I look forward to our annual meeting each year, for the stimulating updates and the friendly professional reunions. Sharing the things we've learned enriches each of us and keeps our organization alive and vibrant.  This year we'll take a deep dive into the world of translating what we do to clinical care.  See you soon!


3_Prather_Aric_100x133 Editor's Message
Aric Prather, PhD

It's been almost 1 year since the sun set over the Pacific Ocean and the San Francisco meeting came to a close.  On the horizon is our meeting in Savannah, Georgia, which is sure to leave those who attend inspired and energized about the future of psychosomatic medicine.  If you're not already excited about this year's meeting, just read on.  The goal of this APS Newsletter Lite is to provide you with a digestible preview of what is offered up to you this year.  The program committee, chaired by Kristen Salomon, has worked tirelessly to develop content in line with this year's theme: From Cells to Community and Back. In addition to symposia and poster presentations, there are several engaging workshops, another installment of the Mini-Medical School, and thematic roundtables linked to invited symposia.  For many of us, APS is our scientific home, the meeting we have been coming to each and every year to present our work, immerse ourselves in the impressive science of others, and reconnect with colleagues we wish we saw more regularly.  However, for others this is the first time they have attended.  This is particularly true for students.  Accordingly, there are several events that cater to this demographic, including a Student Happy Hour (Wednesday night, 8:15-9:30PM) and the Mentor-Mentee program (Thursday night, 7:30-8:30PM).  The APS meeting is what you make of it.  With that in mind, please take a moment to peruse this newsletter so that you can best take advantage of all there is to offer at our annual meeting and in our host city, Savannah.



Program Committee
Kristen Salomon, PhD, Chair (2015)

That time of year has come again, when we all converge upon some unsuspecting town and turn it into Psychosomatic Central.  Truly excellent programming awaits in Savannah, with presentations on cutting-edge research and valuable clinical applications. With three plenary addresses, four invited symposia, three workshops, 13 submitted symposia, 23 paper sessions, and 4 poster sessions (with over 375 posters), your days will be filled to the brim with the latest research. Don't forget to enjoy the town - warm, sunny Savannah - particularly if you live in the polar vortex.  I look forward to seeing you all there!

2015 APS Annual Meeting Going Green and Going Mobile!


We hope that you will be able to join us at the Society's Annual Meeting which will be held later this month in Savannah, Georgia.  If you are planning on attending, but have not yet registered, you may still do so on site at the APS Registration Desk at the Hyatt Regency Savannah - and save time by downloading the onsite registration form.


Going Mobile

APS has updated our meeting technology with the 2015 APS Meeting APP!  We're excited to again be offering a mobile event guide to attendees, so you can access the full text of abstracts and easily search by author, topic and title. The APP has expanded session information and highlights plenary and invited sessions as well as clinically relevant and newsworthy work to be covered at the meeting. And you'll be able to create your own agenda, and access other features including the meeting room floor plan and APS's Twitter feed and Facebook page.  The APS 2015 Meeting APP is accessible from all devices with an internet browser: smartphones, tablets, laptops, and your desktop - we'll send details on how to access the 2015 version next week.


Going Green

We are also continuing with our effort to be kind to the planet by limiting the amount of paper that we use - you've seen us recycle badge holders and avoid paper coffee cups used at Annual Meetings, and this year we are providing much of the meeting information online, and on posters to be displayed throughout the meeting site.


We know that the Meeting Abstracts are one of the most important resources at the Annual Meeting, and this year we are making them available to you two ways - searchable through the 2015 APS Meeting APP, and online at the APS website in .pdf format, also fully searchable (abstracts will be posted next week).  Please know that we WILL NOT be providing the printed abstracts at the Meeting, but we have formatted them by day so you can download or print for yourself one or more days. Following the Annual Meeting, the abstracts will be included as always on the website of the Society's journal, Psychosomatic Medicine.


To help you navigate this content-rich meeting, we will be providing all registrants onsite with an expanded Schedule-at-a-Glance, a guide to what is happening, who, when and where! Included are all scientific sessions, main authors and presenters and the times and locations of all events and breaks.


We hope to see you at the meeting!


APS Speakers

This year we are fortunate to have several distinguished invited speakers as part of our scientific program.  John Cryan, PhD (Thursday 11:15AM-12:15PM) will give a plenary address focused on the complexities of the gut microbiome.  Daniel Buysse, MD (Friday 10:00-11:00AM) will discuss the importance of sleep and its intimate relation to health. William W. Thompson, PhD from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (Saturday 4:15-5:15PM) will close out the plenary sessions with a broader population health perspective.  And of course, we will be treated to a Presidential Address (Thursday 4:30-5:30PM) by our sitting president Karen Weihs, MD.


In addition to these speakers, there are invited symposia that include:

What is Psychosomatic Medicine in Practice?

Transdisciplinary approaches to Targeting Health Disparities: Linking Upstream Determinants to Downstream Interventions

Behavioral Interventions with Racial/Ethnic Minority Populations

"High Utilizers in Psychosomatic Medicine.


There are more than 30 impressive symposia and paper sessions scheduled that reflect the very best from the APS community.  And of course, we have poster sessions each evening, which provide opportunities to interact directly with researchers who are carrying out some of the most innovative science. 



And the winner is...

As revealed in the last newsletter, we can expect a number of engaging presentations from the APS award winners this year.  David Shapiro, PhD, who will receive the Distinguished Scientist Award, will kick things off with his lecture on Wednesday night.  Murray Stein, MD is this year's Donald Oken Fellow and will be participating in a roundtable on Saturday.  Saturday morning, we are treated to a set of award lectures, including presentations from Helen Mayberg, MD (Paul D. MacLean Awardee), Christine Heim, PhD (Patricia R. Barchas Awardee) and Sarah Pressman, PhD (Herbert E. Weiner Early Career Awardee).  If you see them, please feel free to congratulate them on their accomplishments.



Can't miss events!

As always, there is something for everyone at APS.  In addition to all the incredible programming, check out these events:  Psychosomatic Medicine Interest Group Presentations (Thursday 12:45PM-1:45PM): come see what the various interest groups across the country have been doing over the past year.  Sexual Minority Health SIG reception will be on Friday beginning at 7:00pm, following the Poster Session.



What's new this year?

Can we improve on an already stellar meeting?  Of course, we can try!  This year there are a couple changes worth noting. 


BYOBB roundtables

The first is a change to the way roundtables will operate.  Rather than shelling out big money for a lackluster meal, we are trying a BYOBB (bring your own brown bag) lunch approach. It is our hope that this makes the roundtables more accessible to our attendees. 


Docent hosted Poster Sessions

Don't always understand what the "take home" message was from that poster you stood in front of for 15 minutes?  Have no fear, this year we are trying out a docent hosted poster session for a select set of APS participants. The basic idea is that a docent will take participants to select posters, walk them through the content and provide a synthesis of how the research fits within the broader scientific context.  If you are interested in participating, please notify one of the APS staff members at registration as spots are limited.



savannah-skyline-shawn-everhart (2) In and around Savannah

Savannah is more than just the site of the APS annual meeting, it is also a gem of Southern hospitality that has much to offer.  For those who are technologically challenged, here is a list compiled by YELP.com showcasing the "TOP 5" restaurants and nightlife locations in and around Savannah.  Remember some pretty good research that demonstrates that socializing with friends can have important health benefits- act accordingly.



Top 5s (via yelp.com)


1.       Sweet Spice (Caribbean, $), 5515 Waters Ave.; (912) 335-8146 www.sweetspicesavannah.net.

2.       Mrs. Wilkes' Dining Room (Southern, $$), 107 W. Jones St.; (912) 232-5997 www.mrswilkes.com

3.       The Olde Pink House Restaurant (Southern, $$), 23 Abercorn St.; (912) 232-4286; www.plantersinnsavannah.com

4.       Sweet Potatoes Kitchen (Southern, Soul Food, $$) 6825 Waters Ave. (912) 352-3434; www.toucancafe.com/sweet

5.       Zunzi's (Sandwiches, South African, $) 108 E York St; (912) 443-9555 www.zunzis.com



1.       Jen's and Friends (Bar, $$), 7 E. Congress St.

2.       Planters Tavern (Lounge, Jazz & Blues, $$), 23 Abercorn St.

3.       The Jinx (Nightlife, $), 127 W. Congress St.

4.       Wet Willie's (Bar, $), 101 E. River St.

5.       Savannah Smiles Dueling Pianos Saloon (Lounge, Music Venue, $$) 314 Williamson St.