The 2016 Annual SMA Conference, now in its 28th year, is set to kick off on June 16 and continue into a weekend full of programs and events that bring families, researchers, and healthcare providers together.

This year’s conference is on track to have 25% more attendees than the last time we were at Disneyland! We’re expecting well over 1,400 attendees, including 300 researchers from nearly 100 organizations and pharmaceutical companies. There will be a total of 40 family workshops and 120 formal research presentations.

This event is generously supported by more than 20 sponsors and 20 exhibitors. Our special thanks to Biogen as the Presenting Sponsor of the 2016 Annual SMA Conference. Through these incredible sponsors, we are able to provide assistance for travel or registration to 630 attendees!

Advancing Our Most Important Goals

During the scientific meeting, researchers from industry and academia meet to create open communication of early, unpublished scientific data, accelerating the pace of research. The meeting also furthers research by building productive collaborations—including cross-disciplinary dialogue and integration of new researchers and drug companies.

On the family side, we’ve set up a full slate of workshops, including tracks that serve all the different groups in our community, from newly diagnosed to adults with SMA. The conference also includes several of our most loved events that bring our whole community together, including the Meet & Greet, Researcher Relay Race, and Family Friendly Poster Session.

Saturday’s agenda includes two panel discussions and Q&A sessions featuring leading drug development experts. The first panel will cover the new drug application (NDA) process, the last step before a drug can be approved by the FDA. The second panel will feature representatives for all six SMA drugs currently being tested in clinical trials.

The 2016 Annual SMA Conference will allow us to build on our progress and the important milestones that our community has already reached, and to chart a course to meet our goals in the years ahead.

How to Get Involved

Whether you’re able to join us in Anaheim or not, be sure to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter for conference updates.

We’ve got lots planned, including:

  • Live-tweeting at two key sessions: the opening session on Friday morning at 9:00am, and the two panel sessions at 3:00pm on Saturday (all times pacific).
  • Regular updates from the conference posted right here in our news section.
  • Tons of pictures to share!

If you’re posting from or about our conference, be sure to use the hashtags #cureSMA and #SMAconference. We can’t wait to see many of you here at Disneyland!