Brains without Borders was the theme of an informative and engaging breakfast hosted recently by the Perron Institute at The University of Western Australia.

This well attended community outreach event was part of the University Club’s Breakfast by the Bay series.

Perron Institute Director of Research Dr Rebekah Puls welcomed those present and gave a brief outline of the institute’s research structure and wide-ranging areas of interest in neuroscience fields.

Associate Professor Jenny Rodger, head of Brain Plasticity Research at the Perron Institute and The University of Western Australia adeptly chaired the panel of four speakers.

“The brain makes us who we are,” Professor Roger said. “It’s of immense importance that we understand its complexity.”

Panel members were:

  • Professor Anthony Akkari, Head of the Motor Neurone Disease Genetics and Therapeutics Research group at the Perron Institute;
  • Dr Adam Edwards, Senior Postdoctoral Research Fellow at WA’s Perron Institute and Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital, whose area of interest is preventing infant brain injury in neonates;
  • Dr Sarah Hellewell, a Curtin University and Perron Institute Postdoctoral Research Fellow focusing on traumatic brain injury; and
  • Physiotherapist Claire Eardley, who spoke from the heart and personal experience about the importance of youth mental health and her involvement with Kai Fella, an organisation working to help prevent youth suicide.

The informal style of the Brains without Borders breakfast encouraged plenty of lively panel discussion and questions from the audience. Professor Rodger got the ball rolling with her question: “What is your favourite part of the brain?”