Pain Seminar Series

The NIH Pain Seminar Series, sponsored by the NIH PAIN Special Interest Group, features presentations by national leaders in the field of pain. Seminars highlight research conducted on model organisms at the behavioral, molecular, cellular and systems levels, as well as brain imaging work in patients and healthy volunteers. Our goal is to provide a forum where NIH researchers from different backgrounds can openly exchange their ideas and perspectives as well as discuss the latest technical approaches for the study of pain.

Fellows Pain SIG Seminar Meeting with the speakers: As part of the Pain Seminar Series, NIH trainees are invited to meet with speakers following the seminar. This is a great opportunity for trainees to network and learn more about the speaker and their affiliated institution. All trainees are welcome to attend and actively participate. For more information or to ask questions, please contact Helena Ahn ( or Jinhee Wang (

Cajal Legacy. Instituto Cajal (CSIC), Madrid
Cajal Legacy. Instituto Cajal (CSIC), Madrid

Upcoming events

Currently, NIH is urging that all large meetings and symposia that are not mission critical and are scheduled to be held at NIH facilities or organized by NIH either be held virtually using tele/videoconferencing services, postponed, or canceled. We will let you know about rescheduled events and online viewing options as plans are made.

Only NIH staff are allowed to participate. Contact Jinhee Wang to register (

Currently, there are no upcoming webinars.

Past events


June 10, 2021 - 12:00 p.m. ET to 1:00 p.m. ET

The Importance of Expectation in Pain: Experimental Modeling in Humans

Irina Strigo, Ph.D.
Associate Professor
Department of Psychiatry, San Francisco VA Health Care System, University of California San Francisco

May 13, 2021 - 9:00 a.m. ET to 10:00 a.m. ET

Teaching the Brain to Fear

Joshua Johansen, Ph.D.
Team Leader
RIKEN Center for Brain Science

April 8, 2021 - 9:00 a.m. ET to 10:00 a.m. ET

Somatosensory Neuron Types and Neural Networks

Xu Zhang, Ph.D.
Senior Investigator, Shanghai Advanced Research Institute, Chinese Academy of Science (CAS); Director of Institute of Brain-Intelligence Technology
Zhangjiang Laboratory

March 18, 2021 - 9:00 a.m. ET to 10:00 a.m. ET

All in the Mind? The Role of Psychology in the Treatment and Etiology of Pain

Tim Salomons, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Department of Psychology; Queen's University, Canada

February 11, 2021 - 9:00 a.m. ET to 10:00 a.m. ET

Applying Evolutionary Principles to Pain Research

Amanda C. de C Williams, Ph.D.
Professor of Clinical Health Psychology, Research Dept of Clinical, Educational & Health Psychology, University College London; Consultant Clinical Psychologist, Pain Management Centre
University College London Hospital

January 14, 2021 - 9:00 a.m. ET to 10:00 a.m. ET

The emotional consequences of chronic pain: Special focus on the Anterior Cingulate Cortex

Ipek Yalcin, Ph.D., Pharm. D.
Research Director; Head of the team, Neuroanatomy, Pain and Psychopathology,
Institute of Cellular and Integrative Neuroscience UPR3212 CNRS and University of Strasbourg, France


December 10, 2020 - 9:00 a.m. ET to 10:00 a.m. ET

Incerta-thalamic Circuit Controls Nocifensive Behavior via Cannabinoid Type I Receptors

Xiao-Ming Li, Ph.D.
Professor; Executive Dean of Zhejiang University School of Medicine; Executive Director of the Institute of Neuroscience of Zhejiang University

November 12, 2020 - 9:00 a.m. ET to 10:00 a.m. ET

The functional role of spinoparabrachial pathway in nociceptive information processing

Yan-Gang Sun, Ph.D.
Senior Investigator
Center for Excellence in Brain Science and Intelligence Technology (CEBSIT); Chinese Academy of Science

February 7, 2020 - 11:00 a.m. ET to 12:00 p.m. ET

Mouse Models and Human Stem Cells - Complementary Approaches to Study Sensory Neurobiology

Katrin Schrenk-Siemens, Ph.D.
Department of Pharmacology, University of Heidelberg

Jan Siemens, Ph.D.
Department of Pharmacology, University of Heidelberg


December 19, 2019 - 11:00 a.m. ET to 12:00 p.m. ET

Alcohol and Drug Addiction: The Gain in the Brain is in the Pain

George F. Koob, Ph.D.

October 10, 2019 - 11:00 a.m. ET to 12:00 p.m. ET

Opioids and Cannabinoids in Pain: What We Don’t Know About Presynaptic GPCRs Is Hurting Us

Susan Ingram, Ph.D.
Department of Neurological Surgery, Oregon Health & Science University (OHSU)

April 18, 2019 - 11:00 a.m. ET to 12:00 p.m. ET

Dissecting Spinal Pain Circuits for the Development of Novel Viral Gene Therapies

Rebecca P. Seal, Ph.D.
Associate Professor
Departments of Neurobiology and Otolaryngology, Pittsburgh Center for Pain Research, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine

March 28, 2019 - 11:00 a.m. ET to 12:00 p.m. ET

Dissecting the Neural Circuits for Motivated Behaviors

Garret Stuber, Ph.D.
Department of Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine, Department of Pharmacology, Center for Neurobiology of Addiction, Pain, and Emotion, University of Washington

January 10, 2019 - 11:00 a.m. ET to 12:00 p.m. ET

General Anesthesia, Sleep, and Pain

Fan Wang, Ph.D.
Faculty Network Member
Department of Neurobiology, Duke University School of Medicine
Duke Institute for Brain Sciences


December 13, 2018 - 11:00 a.m. ET to 12:00 p.m. ET

Connectomics of Chronic Pain and for Placebo in Chronic Pain

A. Vania Apkarian, Ph.D.
Professor of Physiology, Anesthesiology and Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation
Department of Physiology, Feinberg School of Medicine, Northwestern University

November 13, 2018 - 11:00 a.m. ET to 12:00 p.m. ET

Pain in Mice and Man: Ironic Adventures in Translation

Jeff Mogil, Ph.D.
Department of Psychology and Anesthesia, McGill University

October 11, 2018 - 11:00 a.m. ET to 12:00 p.m. ET

Applying Psychological Science for Pain Relief and Opioid Reduction Across the Continuum of Care

Beth Darnell, Ph.D.
Clinical Professor
Department of Anesthesiology Perioperative and Pain Medicine, Stanford University School of Medicine

June 14, 2018 - 11:00 a.m. ET to 11:00 a.m. ET

Agmatine-based Therapeutic Approaches Reduce Established Chronic Pain

Carolyn Fairbanks, Ph.D.
Professor and Associate Head of Pharmaceutics, and Professor of Pharmacology and Neuroscience
College of Pharmacy and Medical School, University of Minnesota

May 10, 2018 - 11:00 a.m. ET to 12:00 p.m. ET

Imaging Neuroimmune Activation in Human Pain Disorders

Marco Loggia, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Radiology
Associate Director
Harvard Medical School
Center for Integrative Pain NeuroImaging (CiPNI)
A. A. Martinos Center for Biomedical Imaging, ​​​​​​​Massachusetts General Hospital

March 8, 2018 - 11:00 a.m. ET to 12:00 p.m. ET

Endogenous Opioid Systems, Health and Resiliency

Jon-Kar Zubieta, M.D., Ph.D.
William H. and Edna Stimson Presidential Endowed Chair
Professor and Chair, Department of Psychiatry
University Neuropsychiatric Institute, University of Utah Health Sciences Center

February 8, 2018 - 11:00 a.m. ET to 12:00 p.m. ET

Cortical Plasticity as a Key Target for Treating Chronic Pain and Anxiety

Min Zhuo, Ph.D.
Professor, Faculty of Medicine
Department of Physiology, University of Toronto

Subscribe to the Pain SIG Email

If you would like to receive email announcements about the NIH Pain Seminar Series, please email Belinda Davis and Jinhee Wang.


For additional information about the PAIN Seminar series ot the PAIN SIG, please contact any of the organizers: Dr. Yarimar Carrasquillo, Dr. Lauren Atlas, or Dr. Alex Chesler.