Myelin and Multiple Sclerosis: A Multi-Layered Story

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Date: May 14, 2020
Time: 1:00 p.m. - 2:00 p.m.
Location: Zoom
Category: Lecture

An Emeritus Academy colloquium presentation by Joyce Benjamins, Neurology

Abstract: Neuroscience and neurochemistry developed as disciplines in the 1960s. One example of the exponential growth of knowledge in these areas is research on myelin, the multi-layered membrane that insulates nerve processes to speed up information processing in the nervous system. My talk will discuss (a) the basic biology of the myelin membrane and the cells that produce it; (b) mechanisms of myelin destruction in the disease multiple sclerosis (MS); and (c) my current research in collaboration with Dr. Robert Lisak investigating how MS B cells from the body’s immune system damage the brain. 

Joyce Benjamins graduated from Albion College with a major in chemistry in 1963, then received a Ph.D. in biochemistry at the University of Michigan in 1967. Following a postdoctoral fellowship at Stanford University, she was appointed assistant professor in the newly formed neurology department at Johns Hopkins University. After 5 years at Hopkins and 2 years at the University of North Carolina, she joined the Department of Neurology at Wayne State University in 1976.  She served as Associate Chair for Research in Neurology from 1995-2012, and became Professor Emerita in 2018. Dr. Benjamins maintained an active research laboratory at WSU from 1976 to 2018, with emphasis on glial biology, myelination and neuroprotection as related to multiple sclerosis and other disorders affecting myelin. She received NIH funding for 26 years for her grant “Myelination: Assembly of Lipids and Proteins”. She has published 89 peer-reviewed scientific papers and 26 chapters or reviews, and served on multiple scientific review boards for NIH and the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, on the editorial boards of several journals and as a Senior Editor for the textbook Basic Neurochemistry

This will be a meeting via Zoom. It is limited to 25 participants, who will be sent a web address to allow them to join the meeting. Contact Arthur Marotti at if you would like to participate.


Arthur Marotti