Plenary Speakers

Ru-Rong Ji

Duke University, USA

Topic: Neuroimmune cross-talk in physiological and pathological pain and itch

Dr. Ji is a Distinguished Professor of Duke University and the Director of the Center for Translational Pain Medicine at Duke Medical Center, as well as a Professor of Cell Biology and Neurobiology. He earned his PhD in neuroscience from Shanghai Institute of Physiology, Chinese Academy of Sciences and underwent his initial postdoctoral training with Professor Jisheng Han in the Department of Physiology at Beijing Medical University, and now part of Peking University. His further postdoctoral studies were conducted at Karolinska Institute in Stockholm and Johns Hopkins School of Medicine in Baltimore. In 1998, Dr. Ji moved to Boston, where he joined the Harvard Medical School, serving as an Instructor and Assistant Professor in Anesthesiology at Massachusetts General Hospital and an Associate Professor at Brigham and Women’s Hospital. Dr. Ji joined Duke University in 2012 as an endowed professor. 

Dr. Ji has made significant contributions to the scientific community, authoring over 250 papers in prestigious scientific journals, such as Nature, Nature Medicine, Nature Neuroscience, Science, Neuron, and Journal of Clinical Investigation. Over the past 5 years, Dr. Ji has been recognized in the global list of Highly Cited Researchers by Clarivate, with an H-index of 117 and a total citation count of 47,000 in Google Scholar. He received the NIH Transformative Award, American Society of Anesthesiologists Research Excellence Award, and American Academy of Pain Medicine Founder’s Award. Dr. Ji has mentored more than 100 scientists, many of whom now lead independent labs all over the world. He serves at editorial boards of the Journal of Neuroscience, Anesthesiology, and Pain, as well as the Co-Chief Editor of Neuroscience Bulletin. 

Dr. Ji is internationally renowned for his pioneering research in pain mechanisms, particularly for elucidating the roles of MAP kinase signaling pathways and neuroimmune interactions in chronic pain. His team's discovery of potent analgesic properties of specialized pro-resolving mediators (SPMs, including resolvins, protectin, and maresin), as well as their mechanisms of action, represents a major advance in pain research. Moreover, his recent work has uncovered the significance of the PD-L1/PD-1 and STING/interferon pathways in managing physiological and cancer pain. His work has resulted in the identification of numerous therapeutic targets and the filing of many patents. Dr. Ji's research continues to be pivotal in the fields of neuroscience, physiology, and medicine, underlining its relevance and impact. Dr. Ji recently joined the editorial board of Physiological Reviews as an Associate Editor. 

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