Join us for the 2021 Virtual MDF Annual Conference!
September 10th & 11th, 2021
The Myotonic Dystrophy Foundation (MDF) is pleased to announce the 2021 Virtual MDF Annual Conference is taking place September 10th & 11th!
About the Conference
The MDF Annual Conference unites the entire myotonic dystrophy (DM) community – those living with the disease, their family and friends, industry partners, clinicians and researchers, and everyone else focused on understanding and eliminating the burden associated with myotonic dystrophy.
Building on record success at our first ever virtual Conference in 2020, this year MDF will offer a unique opportunity to learn, connect, support, and empower the DM community. We hope you will join us!
Your Conference Experience
A virtual conference is a little different than an in-person conference, as you might expect. MDF will help you understand how to use the web-based platform or application to make the most of your Conference experience. Some features to look forward to include:
An ability to schedule one-to-one and group video meetings with other conference attendees.
Opportunities to participate in live chats and polls.
Ways to interact with our sponsors and exhibitors in their virtual trade show booths and tables for DM related books, podcasts, groups, or websites. Non-profit entities and DM-focused Academic Research Labs may be eligible for a complimentary booth. If you're interested in hosting a booth, mark your interest during registration!
And much more!
After you register, you will receive additional guidance and reminders as the Conference gets closer to ensure you have an easy, fun, and educational experience. Don’t forget to check your email Spam and Junk folders for any Conference communications that accidently get filtered away from your inbox!
Program & Schedule
The Conference officially kicks off Friday, September 10th and ends Saturday, September 11th, with the main program running from 9:30 AM - 6:00 PM Pacific Time each day.
For the first time, the Conference will have a “soft open” on Thursday, September 9th that may include our First Timers’ Tea to orient and welcome those attending the Conference for the first time, as well as entertainment. By popular demand, more networking, sponsorship, and exhibitor opportunities will be offered on all three days.
Details are subject to change as session topics and speaker availability is confirmed.
Session topics were developed based on direct feedback from the DM community through the 2020 conference evaluation surveys, our recent Strategic Planning survey, support group participants, and callers to the MDF Warmline.
This year's virtual conference will have a dedicated Professional Track specifically designed for clinicians, researchers, and industry experts.
The Conference will incorporate many traditional events and activities, including:
The First Timers’ Tea, a networking event for those who have not attended a Conference before to orient you to the Conference, MDF, and the DM community. When you indicate this is your first Conference in the registration form, we will know to send you reminders about this special first-timer event and other content to improve your Conference experience.
Welcome and State of the Foundation Update to learn about recent successes and future goals of the foundation, plus ways to get involved and help achieve the mission.
Stories of Inspiration from the DM Community.
Exercise Programs, professionally facilitated sessions with modifications for community members of all abilities.
“Stump the Expert” sessions with leading DM scientists and clinicians.
Meet the Board of Directors! Join a pair of MDF Board members eager to answer your questions and update you on the latest from MDF (sign up during registration). Click here to learn more about MDF's Board Members and their commitment to the organization.
Updates from DM Drug Developers.
The Closing Dance Party!
Community Panels are back by popular demand! Attend panels for:
Individuals with DM1.
Individuals with DM2.
These sessions feature panels of individuals with experience, compassion, and knowledge to offer their peers, and hope to provide space for you to share your own stories, tips, and questions.
DM Type Specific Sessions, our program will also include a number of parallel sessions each specifically designed for the DM1 or DM2 community. These specialty tracks are still underdevelopment.
This page will be updated with more information on sessions and speakers as it becomes available.
Track 1: DM Type 1
This track was designed for individuals and families seeking to learn more about DM Type 1. Sessions are currently in development and speakers are being confirmed. Sessions may include:
- DM1: Disease Development, Symptoms, and Management
- State of Research for DM1
- Stump the Expert: DM1
- Clinical Trial Readiness Workshop
Track 2: DM Type 2
This track was designed for individuals and families seeking to learn more about DM Type 2. Sessions are currently in development and speakers are being confirmed. Sessions may include:
- DM2: Disease Development, Symptoms, and Management
- State of Research for DM2
- Stump the Expert: DM2
- Clinical Trial Readiness Workshop
Track 3: Caregivers & Self-care
This track was designed for family members, caregivers, or those who are their own caregiver; also appropriate for individuals living with DM1 or DM2. Sessions are currently in development and speakers are being confirmed. Sessions may include:
- Building Resilience: Strategies for Good Mental Health
- Talking About DM to Children, Family Members, and Doctors
- Advocacy and Awareness Workshop - Get Ready for International Myotonic Dystrophy Awareness Day
Track 4: Professionals
This year's virtual conference will have a dedicated Professional Track specifically designed for clinicians, researchers, and industry experts. Session topics were developed based on direct feedback from professionals. Sessions are currently in development and speakers are being confirmed. Sessions may include:
- Repeats: Instability and Stabilization
- Mechanistic Aspects of DM
- Gene Therapy / Editing
- Clinical Updates: TBD
Poster Presentation Showcase - Call for Abstract Submissions
MDF is pleased to announce its call for abstracts for poster presentations of research related to myotonic dystrophy (DM) to showcase at the 2021 Virtual MDF Annual Conference.
Traditional poster sessions combine a visual representation of the findings of a paper/study – the poster - with the opportunity for individualized, informal discussion of the presenter’s work. MDF is thrilled to make this opportunity available at this year’s conference in a virtual format, in which special Web rooms will be designed for attendees to view posters as well as to provide unopposed time for researchers to discuss their findings in a Zoom-like format with conference attendees, including other researchers, clinicians, individuals with DM, and their families.
Poster displays are expected to be self-explanatory, concise, and visually appealing. This opportunity is specifically for doctoral students and postdoctoral researchers working on research of any type of DM, as well as representatives of companies and researchers developing therapies for DM. Click here to download a copy of the Call for Abstracts and Submission Requirements.
Submissions for the MDF Annual Conference Poster session are to be submitted to Dr. Nadine Skinner, MDF Research Coordinator (email@example.com), by July 30, 2021, 5:00pm Pacific Time.
Early Bird Rate - through July 31
Regular Rate - starting August 1
|Community Member (Invididuals living with DM, their caregivers, family, and friends, etc.)||
$25 / Person
$40 / Person
|Professional (Health Care Professional, Researcher, Industry Partner, etc.)||
$125 / Professional
$160 / Professional
Please note, any Community Members enduring financial hardship are able to register at no cost. Select “Community Member – Free” option during registration. Individuals may also add a donation by selecting “Donate: Conference Challenge” after selecting their registration type.
Attendee Code of Conduct
We look forward to the conference every year and this year is no different. As always, we aim to create a positive atmosphere for all attendees. MDF values the diversity of opinions, experiences and perspectives in our community and we are committed to providing a safe and welcoming environment for all in attendance.
Cancellation & Refund Policy
We understand that circumstances and plans may change. MDF is able to offer registration cancellations and refunds made before Friday, September 3, 2021.
If you have registration questions or need assistance with registration, contact the Myotonic Dystrophy Foundation at 415-800-7777 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank You to Our Conference Sponsors