On January 29-30, 2019, the Polish EnGagE team hosted the Network’s first Working Group Meeting. EnGagE members from more than 20 different European countries were invited to attend this multidisciplinary meeting at the Medical Biology Center of the Medical University in Poznań under the honorary patronage of His Magnificence Rector of the Medical University in Poznań, Prof. Andrzej Tykarski.
More than 60 participants attended the meeting that aimed at establishing the Network and defining the main tasks that EnGagE will focus on. The two-day meeting created a unique opportunity for experts from various fields to actively engage and discuss topics relevant to genetic testing and genetic counselling for patients with psychiatric disorders. The attendees’ professional backgrounds’ were mainly in psychiatry, psychology, medical genetics, genetic counselling, ethics, and neuroscience.
The Working Group discussions focused on the current state-of-the art of genetic counselling and testing in psychiatric disorders in Europe and the ethical issues that EnGagE will need to address throughout its lifetime. These discussions were framed by presentations from experts in their respective fields. Andrew McQuillin (UCL London, UK) reviewed “What genetics has taught us about mental disorders so far”, while Filip Biały (insert affiliation) provided an overview on the recent literature addressing ethical issues relevant to genetic testing of patients with psychiatric disorders. Roos van Westrhenen (insert affiliation) gave an update on the current state of pharmacogenomics in psychiatry (“Pharmacogenetics in Psychiatry: a Dutch perspective”) while David Crepaz-Keay (insert affiliation) shared his view on genetic research from a patient perspective.
The first day ended with a guided tour of the Old Market in Poznań and a delicious, typical Polish dinner which encouraged the interaction between the participants who – in the majority – had previously not had the chance to collaborate.
A meeting of the Management Committee followed the successful meeting of the Working Groups.