Havana International Conference Center, Cuba, May 27 to 31, 2019
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Plenary speakers

Gary C. Sieck, Ph.D
Gary C. Sieck, Ph.D., is the Vernon F. and Earline D. Dale Professor of Physiology & Biomedical Engineering at Mayo Clinic and a Mayo Distinguished Investigator. He served as Chair of the Department of Physiology and Biomedical Engineering from 2002-2014, Dean for Research Academic Affairs from 2006-2012 and Director of the Biomedical Engineering Program in the Mayo Graduate School from 2001-2013. Dr. Sieck received a Ph.D. in Physiology and Biophysics from the University of Nebraska Medical Center in 1976. He then completed postdoctoral training in Neurophysiology at UCLA in 1979, where he continued as a faculty member in the Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology. In 1987, Dr. Sieck joined the faculty in the Department of Biomedical Engineering at the University of Southern California where he remained until 1990 when he moved to Mayo Clinic. Dr. Sieck served as President of the American Physiological Society (2009-2011) and President of the Association of Chairs of Departments of Physiology (2010-2012). He is a founding Fellow of the American Physiological Society, and an elected Fellow of the American Institute of Medical and Biological Engineering. In the past, he served as editor-in-chief of the Journal of Applied Physiology from 1999-2005, and he is currently editor-in-chief of Physiology. Dr. Sieck has also served on several study sections at the National Institutes of Health (NIH). He has also served as a mentor for 22 Ph.D. students, 71 postdoctoral fellows and 22 visiting scientists. Dr. Sieck’s research focuses on the neural control of respiratory muscles including the diaphragm and airway smooth muscle. He has published more than 365 peer-reviewed papers, and his research has been continuously funded by multiple grants from the NIH for more than 35 years.

Keynote Speakers

Martin Frank, Ph.D
Martin Frank, Ph.D., 

Martin Frank received his Ph.D. in Physiology and Biophysics from the University of Illinois, Urbana, in 1973 working under Dr. William W. Sleator. He served as a research associate in the Cellular Physiology Laboratory, Michigan Cancer Foundation, Detroit, and in the Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology, MichiganStateUniversity, East Lansing. In 1975, he joined the Department of Physiology, George Washington University School of Medicine, Washington, DC, as an assistant professor. From 1978-1985, he served as the Executive Secretary, Physiology Study Section, Division of Research Grants, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD.  While at NIH he set up his own personal professional development program, working with various directors in the NIH institutes. During that time, he worked in the Office of the NIH Director to develop the first draft of the SBIR application kit. From 1983-1985, he was a member of the Senior Executive Service Candidate Development Program, Department of Health and Human Services, Washington, D.C. As part of the program, he served as a policy analyst in the Office of the Assistant Secretary of Health, DHHS working to draft language for the Orphan Drug Act.   In 1985, Frank accepted a position as the Executive Director of the American Physiological Society, Bethesda, MD, a position that he held until June 30, 2018 when he retired from the position.  The American Physiological Society is a not-for-profit association devoted to fostering education, scientific research, and dissemination of information in the physiological sciences through its meetings and publications.  The Society was founded in 1887 with 28 members and now has over 10,500 members.  Frank managed a staff of 84 with an annual budget of $20 million.  In 2004, Frank accepted a Presidential Award for Excellence in Science, Mathematics and Engineering Mentoring on behalf of the Society for its extensive programs to increase the diversity of the discipline.  Frank was also the recipient of the 2001 Distinguished Alumni Award from his academic department at the University of Illinois, Urbana.  In 2004, he helped found the Washington DC Principles Coalition for Free Access to Science, a Coalition that represents approximately 70 not-for-profit society and university press publishers.  The Coalition believes free access to the scientific literature should be determined by the publishers’ business and publication model, not government mandates.  In 2018, he became an honorary member of the Cuban Physiological Society.