Nominated for Councilor:
Martin Schmelz, MD

Current professional title(s) and affiliation:
Director of Department Experimental Pain Research, CBTM, Medical Faculty Mannheim, Heidelberg University, Germany

A brief description of your work and interests in the pain field:
In a translational approach my studies target those mechanisms in the peripheral nervous system assumed to have the most prominent impact on chronic pain in patients focusing on protocols that can be direct applied to pain patients. Thus, we are selecting and adapting techniques that can be applied in small and large animals and equally well in humans (such as microneurography), both healthy volunteers and pain patients. My main interests are the clinically relevant mechanisms of spontaneous activity and increased supra-threshold firing of nociceptors.

A brief statement of why you are interested in running for the position:
On an international scale translational approaches are required linking clinical expertise and basic research concepts. In pain research as a whole we have been trying to introduce concepts of pain mechanisms derived from experimental basic approaches into the clinics with limited success. It seems that we are currently reverting to a rather descriptive phenotyping approach that might turn out to have the same limited success. My vision is to foster a patient-centered mechanistic approach with a starting point in clinical observation with clinicians and basic researchers discussing on an equal footing.

Listing of IASP activities including current and prior IASP committees, working groups, or SIG leadership groups on which you have served:

  • 2006 Scientific Committee des World Congress of Pain, Glasgow 2008
  • 2008 Scientific Committee des World Congress of Pain, Montreal 2010
  • Assistant Editorial Board PAIN and Journal of Pain since 2005
  • 2015-2016 President-elect German chapter IASP
  • 2017-2018 President German chapter IASP