Dr. Karim Bennys (MD) University Hospital of Montpellier, France

Karim Bennys is a specialist in geriatric medicine and neurogeriatrician in the Cognitive Behavioral Neurology Unit and the Center for Research and Memory Resources of Montpellier University Hospital. He has spent most of his career in Montpellier’s memory clinic since 1998 with an expertise in Alzheimer’s disease and related disorders, and now leading the behavioral and neurodegenerative diseases unit. As a clinician and researcher, he has developed expertise in the area of neurophysiological markers of early synaptic dysfunction in Alzheimer's disease and sports-related concussions, implementing P300 markers in concussion management strategies in environments of young rugby players.


Dr. Charles Bernick (MD, MPH) Cleveland Clinic, United States

Charles Bernick, MD, MPH, is a staff neurologist with the Cleveland Clinic Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health. Dr. Bernick has been involved in the field of Alzheimer’s disease research and treatment for over 30 years. Beginning in 2011, Dr. Bernick has guided the Professional Athletes Brain Health study, a longitudinal cohort study of professional combatants aimed at understanding the effects of cumulative head trauma on brain structure and function.
Dr. Bernick graduated from Rice University and received his MD from University of Texas Southwestern, being elected to the medical honor society, alpha omega alpha. Dr. Bernick completed a neurology residency at the University of Miami, followed by a fellowship in neurology at the University of Arizona, and a Master of Public Health at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas.


Dr. David Brauge (MD), Clinique du Parc of Toulouse, France

David Brauge is neurosurgeon in Toulouse, where he is a member of the University Sports Clinic at the University Hospital. Member of various expert groups on the subject of brain concussions (Ministry of Sports, French Rugby and Football Federation, and World Rugby). Established a multidisciplinary consultation dedicated to the issue of sports-related head trauma at the University Hospital of Toulouse. Collaborates with INSERM in Toulouse (Toulouse NeuroImaging Center-UMR 1214) on the topic of brain imaging in athletes. Created a Continuing Medical Education program on the subject, which has enabled the training of nearly 350 healthcare professionals across France.


Dr. Jean-François Chermann (MD), AP-HP, European Hospital Georges Pompidou, France

Jean-François Chermann is a neurologist and specialist in sports concussions in France. He created the first consultation "Brain Concussion and Sports" at the Léopold-Bellan Hospital in Paris in 2009 and has since followed more than 3000 concussed athletes. An amateur rugby player for over thirty years, he participated in the development of a concussion management program applicable to all sports, under the auspices of the Society of Sports Medicine.

Since 2011 he has led the teaching of neurology to sports physicians as part of a university diploma. In 2022, he served as the principal investigator of a prospective study at the Georges Pompidou Hospital, aiming to evaluate photobiomodulation in athletes who suffered recent concussions.


Dr. Daniel H. Daneshvar (MD, PhD), Harvard Medical School, United States

Dr. Daneshvar serves as Chief of Brain Injury Rehabilitation in the Department of PM&R at Harvard Medical School where he researches the long-term effects of TBI, and repeated TBI. Dr. Daneshvar work has resulted in over 60 scientific papers including in JAMA, Nature Communications, and Brain, and his work has been featured broadly including in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and ESPN. 

He also founded Team Up Against Concussions, the first scientifically validated concussion education program for kids, for which he received the 2016 Excellence in Public Health award from the US Public Health Services. He is a Director at TeachAids, which created CrashCourse, for which he received the 2021 Dean’s Community Service Award from Harvard.


Dr. Chantel Debert (MD, MSc, FRCPC, CSCN) University of Calgary, Canada

Dr. Chantel Debert is an associate professor and clinician scientist in the Department of Clinical Neurosciences, division of physical medicine and rehabilitation at the University of Calgary. She is the lead of the Calgary brain injury program and executive member and research lead of the Canadian association of physical medicine and rehabilitation.   Clinically, she sees patients across the age spectrum from adolescents to elderly with concussion and brain injury.  Dr. Debert’s research interests include exploring the pathophysiology of concussion through a variety of imaging and fluid biomarkers. She is also interested in evaluating novel treatments for patients struggling with symptoms following concussion.


Prof. Philippe Decq (MD, PhD), Paris Cité University, APHP, Hôpital Beaujon, France

Prof. Philippe Decq is a neurosurgeon and Head of the Neurosurgery Department at Assistance Publique-Hôpitaux de Paris, Beaujon Hospital. Beyond his medical achievements, he is an advocate for sports safety, actively contributing as a member of the Concussion working groups for World Rugby and the French Ministry of Sport. Prof Decq's efforts focus on developing strategies to prevent and manage concussions in sports.

His research and academic contributions have advanced the understanding of neurological disorders, making him a respected figure in the medical community. Through his work, he continues to improve patient care and raise awareness about sports-related head injuries.


Dr. Eanna Falvey (MB, PhD, FRCPI, FFSEM, MMedsc), World Rugby, Ireland

Éanna Falvey is the Chief Medical Officer for World Rugby. He is a consultant physician in sports & exercise medicine and an adjunct clinical professor at University College Cork in Ireland. He has been a team physician in sports, including athletics, boxing, Gaelic games and rugby. He has been a team physician for the Munster, Ireland and British & Irish Lions. He is a former international super-heavyweight amateur boxer.


Prof. Pierre Frémont (MD, PhD, FCMF) Laval University, Canada

Pierre Frémont is a professor in the Department of Rehabilitation (Laval University, Québec, Canada) since 1994. He is a past-president of the Canadian Academy of Sport and Exercise Medicine. Since 2012, he is involved as a medical expert on concussion on several Canadian national and provincial (Quebec) initiatives to develop and implement concussion-related recommendations and policies in education, sport and leisure environments.

As a clinician and researcher, he has developed a broad expertise on implementation concussion management strategies in environments ranging from youth development sports to international competition level. In 2016, he led the development of the first Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) on concussion.


Dr. Russell K. Gore (MD, FAAN) Concussion Clinic, SHARE Military Initiative, United States 

Russell Gore is the Founding Director of the Shepherd Center Complex Concussion Clinic and Medical Director of the SHARE Military Initiative. He is a neurologist specialized in traumatic brain injury (TBI) and the vestibular, oculomotor, and balance systems with specific interest in the assessment and rehabilitation of athletes, service members, and veterans with protracted recovery after mild TBI. He is an adjunct Associate Professor in the Wallace H. Coulter Department of Biomedical Engineering leading an interdisciplinary research team developing methods to assess, quantify, and treat brain injury for military and sports applications.

Dr. Gore serves as a concussion consultant and advisor for US Major League Rugby and other national athletics organizations, college and professional sports teams, the Veterans Administration, and the Department of Defense.   


Prof. Xavier Jouven (MD, PhD), AP-HP, European Hospital Georges Pompidou, France

Xavier Jouven is professor in cardiology and in epidemiology at Université de Paris Cité, Hôpital Européen Georges Pompidou. He is the director of the research INSERM team entitled transitional epidemiology and sudden death. He is one of the world specialist of sudden death with more than 150 articles dedicated to this topic, with a particular interest when they occur during sport activity.

He created in 2011 the Paris Sudden Death Expertise Center which is collecting and analysing every case of sudden death in Paris and suburbs with more than 50,000 cases. He is now focusing on the prediction of sudden death using very large data and artificial intelligence in order to propose personalized prevention.


Brian Liebenberg, former rugby player, France

Born on 19 September 1979 in Benoni (South Africa), Brian started playing rugby union at the age of 13. At the age of 18 he left to play in Piacenza (Italy) for a year. Spotted by FC Grenoble Rugby, he stayed there for 2 years before joining Stade Français in Paris where he played for 10 years as inside centre. 

Champion of France in 2003, 2004 and 2007.
Grand Slam winner, 6 Nations Tournament in 2004.
Finalist of the European Cup in 2005.
Semi-finalist of the 2003 World Cup with XV of France.
Brian played 12 times for the national team, but on November 11, 2011, his career ended due to injury.


Dr. Philippe Malafosse (MD), Sport doctor, France

Philippe Malafosse is a sports physician, osteopath, posturologist, and lecturer at the Faculty of Medicine in Montpellier-Nîmes. As a doctor at Montpellier Hérault Rugby (Top 14), he is recognized in the world of professional sports (soccer, rugby, ice hockey) and scientific research for his work in posturology and brain concussions. He authored the book "Comprehensive Manual of Reflexotherapy," which addresses the concept of bio-energetic frequencies used in a recent study on concussions treated with photobiomodulation.


Prof. Franck Molina (PhD), Sys2Diag, CNRS/ALCEN, Montpellier, France

Franck Molina is director of research at CNRS, Montpellier France. He leads the Sys2Diag an interdisciplinary and public/private (CNRS-ALCEN) laboratory devoted to innovation in medical diagnosis (Cancer, mental health, diabetis, infectiology, etc.). Franck Molina has been crossing disciplines from physics, computing sciences to experimental biology and drug discovery at University of Montpellier France and Cambridge University, UK. In 1999, he initiated pioneer projects on systems biology and his original views on biological functions modelling was distinguished by the bronze medal from CNRS in 2004. Since 2007, Franck Molina was involved in early developments of synthetic biology applied on health sciences (innovation medal CNRS 2020). Next to his academic activities, he experienced around 20 years of close relationships with industrial research. These interactions led to original works patented and under current exploitations in medical diagnosis. He is co-founder of 2 start-ups in biotechnology, DiaDx (DNAcir based diagnosis) and SkillCell which develops original technology for real time autotests. During COVID19 crisis Franck Molina has been advising the French Government (CARE scientific comity), HAS (High French Autority for Health) and developed and industrialized the first salivary rapid and connected test for COVID. 


Prof. Jérémie Pariente (MD, PhD), University Hospital of Toulouse, France

Jérémie Pariente is professor of cognitive and behavioral neurology in the Department of Neurology, Toulouse University, France.
With his colleagues neurosurgeon and neuropsychologist, he is conducting an outpatient clinic dedicated to concussion. Prof Pariente and his team have also developed a special interest in chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE).

Prof Pariente is involved in several neuroimaging research projects in the Devin Team (TONIC Inserm Unit, Toulouse, Patrice Péran) in concussion and CTE.


Prof. Jon Patricios (MBBCh, MMedSci, FACSM, FFSEM (UK), FFIMS), Wits University, South Africa

Prof Patricios is Director of Waterfall Sports Orthopaedic Surgery in Johannesburg and Professor in the Faculty of Health Sciences, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg where he leads the Wits Sport and Health (WiSH) Research Group. Jon is founder and Director of Sports Concussion South Africa, sports concussion consultant to World Rugby, a board member of the international Concussion in Sports Group and Co-chair of the scientific committee for the International Consensus Conference on Concussion in Sport. He is co-lead author of the 2023 International Consensus Statement on Concussion in Sport. Most recently he was on the independent concussion advisory panel for the FIFA 2022 World Cup and in 2023 joined UEFA’s Head Injury Advisory Committee and the Head, Neck and Spine Committee of the National Football League (NFL, USA). He is an editor of the British Journal of Sports Medicine and served 2 terms as President of the South African Sports Medicine Association (SASMA). 


Pascal Saguin, Senior Vice President, VOGO, France 

After graduating from the ENSERG - INPG engineering school in Grenoble, I joined Jay Electronique in Montbonnot St Martin in 1997 as a radio engineer. I soon joined the LEGRAND group as a radio and standardisation engineer. In 2000, I joined Adeunis as a radio engineer and project manager. In 2008, I became Technical Director at Adeunis, then Managing Director in 2015 and CEO in 2018. On 1 November 2019, following the acquisition of Adeunis' Vokkero business by Vogo, I joined the latter as Deputy CEO, in charge of structuring the VOGO group and innovation strategy. 


Prof. Vincent Sapin (PharmD, PhD), Clermont-Ferrand University, France

Vincent Sapin is Clinical Biologist working at Clermont-Ferrand (France) as Professor of “Biochemistry and Molecular Biology” at the School of Medicine (Université Clermont Auvergne) and Head of the “Biochemistry and Molecular Genetics” Department at the University Hospital. For more than 10 years, his clinical research group has worked on the research and development of new blood biomarkers of mild Traumatic Brain Injury (MTBI) in the global population but also specific ones: elderly, pediatric and professional rugby players (in association with the Top 14 team ASM-CA). After several papers on protein S100B, his group is presently working, with the same pre-analytical, analytical and post-analytical strategies, on the two new biomarkers “Glial Fibrillary Acidic Protein” and “Ubiquitin C-terminal Hydrolase L1”. More specifically, concerning the concussion of rugby players, the group has recently established the interests of blood S100B protein determination to help the management of return to play of concussed players with a strategy based on personalized biology. Vincent Sapin promotes the use of biological tools in the management of sports concussions. He was recently nominated as president of the working group “Biomarkers of mTBI” of the European Federation of Laboratory Medicine. Due to its expertise, the laboratory was appointed in 2019 as National Reference Laboratory by the French Health Minister in the field of “Biochemistry approaches of cerebral stress”. 


Dr. Kathryn Schneider (PT, PhD, DipManiPT), University of Calgary, Canada

Dr. Kathryn Schneider is an Associate Professor and Clinician Scientist (Physiotherapist) and an epidemiologist at the Sport Injury Prevention Research Centre, Faculty of Kinesiology at the University of Calgary. Her research focuses on the prevention, detection and rehabilitation of sport-related concussion. Her research to date has informed multifaceted screening and assessment of concussion (including the importance of evaluating the cervical spine), concussion prevention strategies and informed changes to recommendations to rehabilitation – including identification of positive outcomes on recovery following concussion with the use of cervicovestibular rehabilitation. She is a Clinical Specialist in Musculoskeletal Physiotherapy, a Fellow of the Canadian Academy of Manipulative Physiotherapists and has expertise and certification in vestibular rehabilitation. She was recognized by Avenue Magazine as “Top 40 Under 40” in 2012, was the recipient of the Vestibular Disorders Association (VEDA) Champion of Vestibular Medicine Award in 2015 and recognized by the Canadian Physiotherapy Association with a Centenary Medal of Distinction in 2021.  She has been involved as an Expert Panelist at the 4th and 5th International Conferences on Concussion in Sport and Scientific Committee member and led the methodology informing the 5th and 6th International Conferences on Concussion in Sport. She was the co-lead author of the Amsterdam Consensus Statement and co-chair of the Scientific Committee for the 6th International Conference on Concussion in Sport. Her clinical practice focuses on the treatment of recreational to elite/professional athletes with concussion.


Philippe Sella, former rugby player, France

Philippe Sella is a legendary former rugby player known for his exceptional skills as a center. He played for SU Agen, winning the French championship in 1982 and 1988. He then pursued a professional rugby career in England, playing for Saracens. He was runners-up in the English championship in 1998 and won the English Cup in the same year. Additionally, he represented France in four Rugby World Cups from 1982 to 1995, earning 111 caps and being part of the victorious team in New Zealand in 1994.

During his career, Philippe experienced some major concussions, the circumstances and impact of which will be shared during the Inaugural Conference of the ISSC. After retirement, he remained involved in rugby, mentoring young players and promoting the sport globally. His legacy continues to inspire future generations of rugby players.


Prof. Jacques Touchon (MD, PhD), Montpellier University, France

Jacques Touchon, MD, PhD is an Emeritus Professor at Montpellier University France, member of the Institut des Neurosciences de Montpellier (INM) INSERM UNIT 1298. He is the Editor in Chief of the Journal of Prevention of Alzheimer’s Disease (JPAD), co-Chairman and founding member of the Clinical Trials on Alzheimer’s Disease Conference (CTAD). Jacques Touchon obtained his MD in 1979, and from 1980 to 1984 degrees in neurology, psychiatry, neurophysiology and geriatric. Formerly, Jacques Touchon was a Professor of Neurology at the Montpellier Medical School (1990-2014) Chief of the Neurology Department of the Montpellier University Hospital (2004-2014), Dean of the Montpellier Medical School (2000-2010), Director of the Center for Memory Resources and Research (CMRR) for the Languedoc-Roussillon region (2004-2014). He is a member of the « Académie des Sciences et des Lettres » de Montpellier until 2004. His areas of interest are Alzheimer’s Disease, ageing and neurodegenerative diseases. He was awarded for excellence in Alzheimer Disease Research: Academic Palms in 1999, the PINEL prize in 2000 and in 2007 Chevalier de la Légion d'Honneur.


Dr. Stephen West (PhD), Bath University, United Kingdom

Stephen West is a lecturer at the University of Bath and a member of the Centre for Health, Injury and Illness Prevention in Sport as well as the newest IOC Research Centre of Excellence: the UK Collaborating Centre on Injury and Illness Prevention in Sport. Stephen’s research focuses on injury epidemiology and prevention in many sports, across the spectrum of the grassroots community game and youth to elite professionals. His work predominantly focuses on rugby union and spans multiple concussion prevention strategies including training strategies, policy change and protective equipment.


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