About this event

  • Date and time Tue 4 May 2021 from 8:30am to 10:00pm
  • Location Royal Society of Medicine
  • Organised by Psychiatry

*Please note: This event was due to take place on Tuesday 12 May 2020 and has been postponed to Tuesday 4 May 2021.  We apologise for any inconvenience this may have caused.*

This unique event will bring together international experts to give you an update on some of the main emerging concepts in psychiatry research and their relevance for translation in clinical practice. We will discuss new evidence on environmental risks, advances in our understanding of the link between physical and mental health, and novel treatment approaches and emerging pharmacological treatments in psychiatry.

Topics include

  • The increasing evidence of the link between physical and mental health and how should we move forward to protect the physical health of patients with mental health disorders
  • Emerging data on environmental risk factors such as air pollution and cannabis use and when is it important to start intervening
  • Novel approaches in treatment and assessment in psychiatry
  • Advances in pharmacological treatments including the use of anti-inflammatory medications, psychedelics, and ketamine.

Psychiatry Section: Mental Health Foundation Research Prize

First prize: £750
Second prize: £100

Submission deadline: Saturday 29 February 2020

Open to all psychologists and psychiatrists in accredited training or research posts in the UK at the time of publication

Application guidelines:
This prize is to be awarded for the most outstanding published paper reporting original research work by the principal author in the last year.

Entries should consist of a covering letter explaining, the significance of the publication and attachments of:

  • The published article or the article and a letter of acceptance from the publisher
  • A short CV of the applicant

Click here to submit

Join in the conversation online using #FutureOfPsychiatry
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Standard pricing available until 03 May 2021.


RSM Fellow
Day 1
£125.00 Meeting
£50.00 Dinner
RSM Associate
Day 1
£85.00 Meeting
£50.00 Dinner
RSM Retired Fellow
Day 1
£85.00 Meeting
£50.00 Dinner
RSM Trainee
Day 1
£85.00 Meeting
£50.00 Dinner
RSM Student
Day 1
£35.00 Meeting
£50.00 Dinner

Non - Member

Consultant / GP
Day 1
£180.00 Meeting
£50.00 Dinner
AHP / Nurse / Midwife
Day 1
£105.00 Meeting
£50.00 Dinner
Day 1
£105.00 Meeting
£50.00 Dinner
Day 1
£50.00 Meeting
£50.00 Dinner

Key speakers

Prof Merete Nordentoft

Prof Merete Nordentoft

Professor, director of research, CORE- Copenhagen Research Centre for Mental Health, Copenhagen University Hospital, Denmark

Speaker's biography

She has worked with early intervention in psychosis since 1996, when she started to plan the first OPUS I trial. She successfully achieved state funding for this trial, which was the hitherto largest RCT testing the effect of specialized assertive Early Intervention Services. OPUS treatment was clearly superior to standard treatment with regard to psychotic and negative symptoms, substance abuse, level of functioning, adherence to medication, user’s and caregiver’s satisfaction with treatment, and use of bed days. A health economic analyses showed that treatment was cheaper and better and that the savings were clear even when taking the costs of the intensive out-patients treatment into account. The OPUS I trial was the largest study in the meta-analysis (Correll et al), Jama Psych 2018. Participants in the OPUS trial were followed up after one, two, five and 10 years, and a 20 years follow-up is currently conducted. The long-term follow-up studies gave new insight in the long-term prognosis of patients with first episode psychosis.

Besides the OPUS trials she was PI for many large randomized clinical trials, evaluating the effect of lifestyle interventions, neurocognitive and social cognitive remediation, individual placement and support, dialectic behavioral therapy, assertive outreach to people who attempted suicide. She has worked with suicide prevention at a national level since 1997, focusing especially on suicide in schizophrenia, and suicides shortly after discharge from inpatient stay. Together with a group of epidemiologists from Nordic countries, she has proved that life expectancy in schizophrenia is 15 to 20 years shorter than in the general population.
She initiated the large Danish High Risk and Resilience Study VIA 7, and the first follow-up wave VIA 11 are important parts of iPSYCH. She made an important contribution to the field by investigating the difficulties for children born to parents with schizophrenia. The results of the VIA 7 study showed that already at age seven, children of parents with schizophrenia were more likely to have poor neurocognitive performance, poor social performance, poor motor function, more externalizing and internalizing symptoms and more psychotic experiences. They also more often lived in inappropriate home environment.

Professor Brenda Penninx

Prof Dr Brenda Penninx

Professor, Amsterdam UMC, Vrije Universiteit

Speaker's biography

Brenda Penninx, PhD, is Professor at the Department of Psychiatry of the Amsterdam UMC, Vrije Universiteit, the Netherlands.Penninx is widely acknowledged for her cross-disciplinary approach to mental health research in which she integrates psychiatry, psychology, neuroimaging, genomics, psychoneuroendocrinology, sociology and behavioural medicine. She is the principal investigator of the multi-site, longitudinal Netherlands Study of Depression and Anxiety (www.nesda.nl), an invaluable research resource for psychiatry which so far yielded >68 PhD-theses and >600 publications. She recently initiated the MARIO cohort that follows high-risk children and young adults in their stress and psychopathology patterns during life (www.mario-study.nl).

The themes of her research program encompass: 1) examination of the role of psychosocial, neurobiological and genetic factors in the etiology and course of depression and anxiety disorders; 2) understanding treatment response variability from biological and psychosocial perspectives and applying that understanding to the development and testing of new ways to manage depression. In terms of leadership Penninx has been able to weld a highly successful research group. Dr. Penninx currently supervises 4 Assistant Professors, 6 Post-docs, and 21 PhD students. More than 50 PhD students have obtained their PhD-degree under her supervision. In 2016, she has been elected member of the Royal Dutch Academy of Sciences and Arts.

Penninx has over 800 PubMed publications, mostly in high-ranking international journals. Her H-index is 117 with a total number of 56.393 citations (Web of science, 1-9-2018).

Professor Robin Murray

Sir Robin M Murray

Professor of Psychiatric Research at the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience, King's College London

Speaker's biography

Robin Murray is Professor of Psychiatric Research at the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience, King's College, and indeed has spent most of his working life there apart from one year at NIMH in the USA. His particular interest is in psychosis. He was one of the first to suggest that schizophrenia was in part a neurodevelopmental disorder, and he and his colleagues have contributed to the understanding that environmental factors such as obstetric events, drug abuse and social adversity dysregulate striatal dopamine and thus increase the risk of psychosis. He also cares for people with psychosis at the South London and Maudsley NHS Trust. He has written over 800 articles, not all of them boring!  He is the most frequently cited psychosis researcher outside the USA, has supervised 72 PhDs and 12 MD Theses, and 40 of his students have become full professors. He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society in 2010 and received a knighthood in 2011.

Professor Catherine Harmer

Prof Catherine Harmer

Professor of Cognitive Neuroscience, University of Oxford

Speaker's biography

Catherine is the director of the Psychopharmacology and Emotional Research Lab (PERL) based at the University Department of Psychiatry in Oxford. This forms a multi-disciplinary team and includes graduate research assistants, DPhil students, post-doctoral researchers, Psychiatrists and Pharmacologists. The research of the group focuses on the psychological mechanisms of antidepressant drug action by exploring drug effects on human models of emotional processing. A range of methodologies are used, including neuropsychological testing, transcranial magnetic stimulation and functional neuroimaging with fMRI and PET in healthy volunteers and patient samples. This research has the potential to integrate psychological and pharmacological views of depression and treatment and has challenged the way in which we typically consider drug treatment for depression to work (see Harmer et al 2009). In addition, this research has led to the development of human experimental models to explore the effects of established and novel drugs for the treatment of depression and anxiety. Such results, therefore, have implications both for how we understand antidepressants to work but also in the identification and development of new treatments for depression and anxiety.


View the programme

Registration, tea and coffee
Welcome and introduction

Dr Valeria Mondelli, Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience, King’s College London

Opening lecture: What nonsense do we now believe about schizophrenia?

Sir Robin M Murray, Professor of Psychiatric Research, King’s College London

Emerging concepts in the link between physical and mental health

Chair: Professor Carmine M Pariante, Professor of Biological Psychiatry, Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience, King’s College London and Consultant Perinatal Psychiatrist, South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust

Protecting physical health of people with mental health problems: reflections from the Lancet Commissioning Group

Dr Brendon Stubbs, Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience, King’s College London

Metabolic syndrome and psychiatric disorders: More than a simple association?

Professor Brenda Penninx, Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Panel discussion
Tea and coffee break 

Emerging concepts in environmental risks and prevention

Chair: Professor Paola Dazzan, Professor of Neurobiology of Psychosis, Department of Psychological Medicine, Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience, King’s College London, and Honorary Consultant Perinatal Psychiatrist, South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust

Cannabis and psychosis

Marta Di Forti, BRC Senior Clinical Lecturer and Consultant Psychiatry, Social Genetic and Developmental Psychiatry Centre, Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience, King's College London and South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust

Air pollution and mental health

Dr Helen Fisher, Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience, King’s College London

How early is too late? Possibilities for prevention and early intervention in psychosis

Professor Merete Nordentoft, University of Copenhagen, Denmark

Panel discussion

Emerging concepts in treatment approaches

Chair: Dr Martina Di Simplicio, Clinical Senior Lecturer in Psychiatry, Centre for Psychiatry, Imperial College London, and Honorary Consultant Psychiatrist, West London Mental Health Trust

Virtual reality applications in psychiatry

Dr Charlotte Gayer-Anderson, Research Fellow, Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience

Bridging different approaches to depression

Professor Catherine Harmer, Oxford University

Panel discussion
Tea and coffee break

Advances in pharmacological treatments

Neuroimmunology and psychosis: Lessons challenges and precision medicine opportunities

Professor Rachel Upthegrove, Birmingham University

Psychedelics: Therapeutic mechanisms

Dr Robin Lester Carhart-Harris, Head of Centre for Psychedelic Research, Imperial College London

Ketamine and esketamine – a tiger to be trained?

Professor Rupert McShane, Consultant Psychiatrist, Oxford Health NHS Foundation Trust and Associate Professor, Department of Psychiatry, University of Oxford

Panel discussion
Closing remarks

Dr Valeria Mondelli

Close of meeting
Section AGM

All section members invited

Drinks reception
Award ceremony: Mental Health Foundation Research Prize
Pre-dinner speech

Professor Miranda Wolpert, Head of Mental Health Priority Area, Wellcome Trust



Royal Society of Medicine, 1 Wimpole St, Marylebone, London, W1G 0AE, United Kingdom

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