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2018 Membership Renewal

Beginning in 2018, in order to keep current with members; we have instated a $40.00 annual membership fee. This fee will help us to identify our members allowing us to accurately provide information, keep email and communication up to date, and provide updated services to our members.

Please join our organization for another successful year by joining or renewing your membership today. Membership runs January 1-December 31. By becoming a member of IRLSSG, you gain access to the annual meeting in June 2018 and may be eligible for young investigator awards.

Membership $40USD
Purchase using PayPal

Benefits and Services


  • Opportunity to participate on publication committees.


  • IRLSSG website access
  • Access to course sites
  • Access to online materials including PPT and PDF papers

Live Learning

  • IRLSSG Annual Scientific Meeting
  • IRLSS Annual Scientific Meeting networking reception and dinner (with guest)
  • Participate in all IRLSSG programs
  • Connect colleagues with RLS researchers

Practice Tools

  • International Membership Directory – database that helps patients find you

Additional Benefits

  • Strong advocacy at the international level on RLS related health issues.
  • Inclusion on online membership directory
  • Vote on executive committee positions
  • Networking and professional development opportunities through social media presence on Facebook, Twitter, and other social media outlets

If you have any questions about the renewal process, please contact us at

As always, we thank you for your continued dedication to our cause. We look forward to serving you for another year!

Wayne Hening Young Investigator Award

Named to honor the memory of a pioneer in RLS research and established in 2010, the Wayne Hening Young Investigator Awards are presented at the annual meeting of the IRLSSG. The five $1,000 awards recognize research efforts by new investigators in an attempt to promote interest in the study of RLS.

The 2018 Wayne Hening Young Investigator Awards will be made to welcome:

1. Either young investigators new to the RLS/PLMS field who are no more than 10 years past receiving their PhD or MD; or

2. Senior investigators new to the RLS/PLMS field (first publication of a first author abstract or journal article in the RLS/PLMS field is within the last 3 years); and

3. Their scientific RLS/PLMS work was accepted for presentation at the APSS/SRS SLEEP meeting in Baltimore, Maryland.

The awardees are expected to present their work at the IRLSSG annual meeting, Saturday, June 2, 2018, at the IRLSSG Annual Scientific meeting held in Baltimore, Maryland. (You must be a member of IRLSSG to attend.) The deadline for abstract submission and award application is May 1, 2018. Abstracts considered for award will be judged based on work quality and relevance to the field and notifications can be expected by May 10, 2018. More information about the IRLSSG and annual 2018 meeting is available.

Award applications should include the following:

1. Name, address, and scientific affiliation

2. Current job and professional role

3. Scientific mentor/senior associate (for junior investigators)

4. Submitted abstract and official indication of acceptance or scientific role of the applicant in the scientific encounter with official documentation attached to the application (this can be submitted later than the initial application if relevant information is unavailable at the first point).

5. Other information supporting the application when appropriate or needed (e.g. comments about relevance of the work to RLS or about role/activity in the IRLSSG meeting.)

Applications should be sent by email to:
IRLSSG Wayne Hening Award Committee
c/o Allan O’Bryan, Executive Secretary IRLSSG

2018 Annual Meeting

International RLS Study Group Annual Meeting 2018

Cost: $40USD (includes lunch and 2018 membership fee). Download the final program.

Register and become a member to attend
Purchase using PayPal

Location: University of Maryland, SMC Campus Center, 621 W Lombard St, Baltimore MD

Room: Multipurpose Room 349 (Map Below)

Date: Saturday June 2, 2018

Time: 9:00am – 6:00pm


International RLS Study Group
Final Program


Denise Sharon, Garima Shukla, Aaro Salminen

Moderator: Aaro Salminen

9:00 am  -  9:10 am    Welcome to Baltimore -  C. Earley

9:10 am  -  9:30 am     RLS: a hypoadenosinergic state - S. Ferre

9:30 am  -  9:50 am    MRI of RLS Brains - Q. Yang

9:50 am  - 10:10 am    Pathophysiology of RLS: what can we learn from genetics? - A. Salminen

10:10 am - 10:30 am   Year in Review, Projects and Future directions - D. Garcia-Borreguero

10:30 am - 11:00 am  Coffee break

Moderator:  Shelley Zak
11:00 am -  12:30 pm  WHA presentations

11:00 am – 11:20 am Kwang Su Cha
11:20 am - 11:40 am Tae-Joon Kim
11:40 am - 12:00 pm Stefania Mondrello

12:30 am - 1:30 pm   Lunch

Moderator: Denise Sharon

1:30  pm - 1:40 pm     Optimal diagnostic methods for epidemiologic studies and clinical trials - R. Allen

1:40 pm - 1:50 pm       Predictors of treatment effects and treatment trajectories in clinical trials - S. Fulda

2:00 pm - 2:20 pm      Opioid Registry - J. Winkelman

2:20 pm - 2:40 pm      Proposal for Consensus Guidelines on RLS Readouts in Animal Models - M. Manconi

2:40 pm - 3:00 pm      sIRLS Validation study - D. Sharon

3:00 pm -3:20 pm       Coffee break

3:20 pm - 3:40 pm     Periodic and non-periodic leg movements during sleep in children and adolescents with RLS or Narcolepsy - R. Ferri

3:40 pm - 4:00 pm     Restless sleep vs Restless Legs Syndrome in children: a diagnostic challenge - L. DelRosso

4:00 pm - 4:30 pm     Update on treatment:

DA augmentation and alpha-2-delta – Y. Inoue
Iron treatment guidelines – C. Earley
Opiates treatment guidelines - M. Silber

4:30 pm - 4:40 pm     The Stroke - RLS relationship: case discussion - A. Gupta

4:40 pm - 5:00 pm   Networking

5:00 pm - 6:00 pm  Business meeting


IRLSSG Accepted as Society Member of World Sleep Society

In 2016, World Sleep Federation (WSF) and World Association of Sleep Medicine (WASM) collaborated to found one international organization: World Sleep Society. As of 2017, IRLSSG is an Associate Society Member of World Sleep Society.

The goal and purpose of the World Sleep Society is to advance knowledge about sleep, circadian rhythms, sleep health, and sleep disorders worldwide, especially in those parts of the world where this knowledge has not advanced sufficiently. This endeavor will promote clinical and scientific information for scientists, health care personnel, and the general public.


2017 Annual Meeting

International RLS Study Group Annual Meeting 2017

Location: Prague during World Sleep 2017

Date: Saturday, October 7, 2017

Time: 08:00 – 17:30

Prague Congress Centre (Kongresové centrum Praha)
5. kvetna 65
140 21 Prague 4, Czech Republic
630 80 249

Room: CLUB H

Course, Club H
07.10.2017, 08:00 – 17:30
Course 100: International RLS Study Group: RLS is not just leg kicking

D. Garcia-Borreguero, Spain

This year's educational program will introduce new and expanded data on RLS and limb movements. Several presentations will discuss the association of weight and RLS with and without PLMS. Recent data from imaging studies contribute to the understanding of the pathophysiology of RLS. More presentations will debate the unequivocal association of sleep related limb movements and RLS. Clinical aspects of RLS in adults and children will be reviewed. Finally, treatment conundrums will be discussed. New this year, we will present opportunities for international collaboration.

Welcome to IRLSSG in Prague
K. Sonka, Czech Republic
08:00 – 08:10

Obesity and RLS
X. Gao, United States
08:10 – 08:30

RLS severity and BMI
F. Provini, Italy
08:30 – 08:50

RLS and BMI in stroke patients
M. Manconi, Switzerland
08:50 – 09:10

Cerebral hemodynamic disturbances in RLS with PLMs
K.Y. Jung, Republic of Korea
09:10 – 09:30

Resting state and thalamic role in RLS
Y.W. Cho, Republic of Korea
09:30 – 09:50

Coffee break - AM
09:50 – 10:20

Sleep related leg movements: Beyond PLM
R. Allen, United States
10:20 – 10:40

Beyond PLMS: The neurophysiology of short-interval leg movements during sleep
R. Ferri, Italy
10:40 – 11:00

Periodic vs. respiratory related leg movements
S. Fulda, Switzerland
11:00 – 11:20

PLMS mimicking RBD
A. Iranzo, Spain
11:20 – 11:40

Wayne Hening Award Abstract presentations

Circadian locomotor activity in Meis1 knock-out mice
A. Salminen, Germany
11:40 – 11:50

Validation of an automatic scoring algorithm for the analysis of periodic limb movements according to the WASM2016 guidelines
D. Alvarez-Estevez, The Netherlands
11:50 – 12:00

Association of BTBD9 and MAP2K5/SKOR1 With Restless Legs Syndrome in Chinese Population
G. Li, China
12:00 – 12:10

Plantar reflex excitability fluctuations in Restless legs syndrome patients
S. Kerr, South Africa
12:10 – 12:20

Prevalence and associated factors of restless legs syndrome and periodic limb movement in EPISONO cohort
L. Kim, Brazil
12:20 – 12:30

Lunch break
12:30 – 13:30

Actigraphy and PLMS
D. Kemlink, Czech Republic
13:30 – 13:50

Ped RLS TF report
A. Walters, United States
13:50 – 14:10

Opiates vs. alpha 2 delta in RLS
D. Garcia-Borreguero, Spain
F. Sixel-Döring, Germany
14:10 – 15:10

Coffee break - PM
15:10 – 15:40

International Projects – our experience
J. Winkelmann, Germany
A. Walters, United States
15:40 – 15:50

International Projects – Networking for Science Group Session
D. Garcia-Borreguero, Spain
15:50 – 16:30

IRLSSG Business Meeting
D. Garcia-Borreguero, Spain
16:30 – 17:30

Guidelines for First-line Treatment of RLS, Prevention and Treatment of Augmentation


Title:  Guidelines for the first-line treatment of restless legs syndrome/Willis–Ekbom disease, prevention and treatment of dopaminergic augmentation: a combined task force of the IRLSSG, EURLSSG, and the RLS-Foundation
ISSN: 1389-9457
DOI: 10.1016/j.sleep.2016.01.017



Click on below link to download the paper.   For permission to reproduce or distribute the paper contact

Click here: Summary of recommendations RLS Augmentation 13Aug2015 (PDF)
(updated on August 13, 2015 with corrected serum ferritin level)

Members of the Task Force

Diego Garcia‐Borreguero, MD, Madrid, Spain*
Richard P. Allen, PhD, Baltimore, MD, USA*
Michael H. Silber, MBChB, Rochester, MN, USA*
John W. Winkelman, MD, Boston, MA, USA*
Birgit Högl, MD, Innsbruck, Austria*
Jacquelyn Bainbridge, PharmD, Denver, CO, USA
Mark Buchfuhrer, MD, Downey, CA, USA
Georgios Hadjigeorgiou, MD, Thessaly, Greece
Yuichi Inoue, MD, Tokyo, Japan
Mauro Manconi, MD, Lugano, Switzerland
William Ondo, MD, Houston, TX, USA
Juliane Winkelmann, MD, Stanford, CA, USA
*Member of the writing committee

2015 Science Summit October 22-26, 2015

International RLS Study Group (IRLSSG)and European RLS Study Group (EU-RLSSG) 2015 RLS/WED SCIENCE SUMMIT

OCTOBER 22-26, 2015 held in Asilomar Conference Grounds in Pacific Grove, CA


SYMPOSIUM SPEAKER ABSTRACTS (PDF):  RLS Science Summit abstracts ver100915

Certifiate of Attendance (PDF download):  2015 certificate of attendance - template

RLS/WED Science Summit Program Committee

Diego Garcia-Borreguero (co-chair)
Juliane Winkelmann (co-chair)

Richard Allen
WH Oertel
Daniel Picchietti
Marco Zucconi


Noon – 10:00pm Check-in and registration
6:00pm – 6:30pm Opening reception by Crocker Hall fire pit
6:30pm – 8:30pm BBQ dinner by Crocker Hall fire pit
8:30pm – 10:00pm Networking at social hall and fire pit

7:30am – 8:00am Breakfast at Crocker Dining Hall
8:00am – 8:15am Opening session
8:15am – 9:45am Session 1 – Epidemiology
9:45am – 10:00am Coffee Break
10:00am – 12:00pm Session 2Genetics 
Noon – 1:00pm Lunch at Crocker Dining Hall
1:15pm – 3:15pm Session 3 – Animal Models for RLS Phenotype  
3:15pm – 3:30pm Coffee Break
3:30pm – 5:00pm Session 4 - Spinal and Cortical Excitability/Hyperarousal
5:00pm – 6:00pm Writing Sessions
6:00pm – 7:00pm Dinner at Crocker Dining Hall
7:30pm – 8:30pm Debate on Diagnostic Criteria: HB Lee, Dan Picchietti, Ruth O'Hare, and Art Walters
8:30pm – 9:30pm Posters and social networking; wine and cheese

7:30am – 8:00am Breakfast at Crocker Dining Hall
8:00am – 9:30am Session 5 – PLMS Discussion Session
9:30am – 9:50am Coffee Break
9:50am – 11:50am Session 6 – The Role of Iron
Noon – 1:00pm Lunch at Crocker Dining Hall
1:15pm – 2:45pm Session 7 – The Dopaminergic System and RLS: Where Are We and What Next
2:45pm – 3:00pm Coffee Break
3:00pm – 4:30pm Session 8 - Opioids and Pain in RLS
4:30pm – 5:30pm Writing Session
5:00-pm - 6:00pm  Special interest group:  Priorities and avenues for NIH and other government funding (meet at Hearst Social Hall)
6:00pm – 7:00pm Dinner at Crocker Dining Hall
7:30pm – 8:30pm  PLM Detection and Associations in the Wisconsin Sleep Cohort: E Mignot
8:30pm – 9:30pm Posters and social networking; wine and cheese

7:30am – 8:00am Breakfast at Crocker Dining Hall
8:10am – 9:40am Session 9 – RLS and Cardiovascular Disease: Current Evidence and a
Roadmap for Future Research
9:40am – 10:00am Coffee Break
10:00am – 11:30am Session 10 – Brain Imaging and Connectivity
Noon – 1:00pm Lunch at Crocker Dining Hall
1:15pm – 2:45pm Session 11 – New Treatment Implications of Current Science
2:45pm – 3:00pm Coffee Break
3:00pm – 4:30pm Session 12 - Clinical Updates
4:30pm – 6:00pm Writing Session
6:00pm – 7:00pm Dinner at Crocker Dining Hall
7:30pm – 8:30pm Next Generation RLS Researchers - increasing awareness on RLS
Research for Young scientists and clinicians: Wolfgang H Oertel
8:30pm – 9:30pm Discussion and next steps
9:30pm – 10:00pm Networking

5:00am – Noon Depart for airports
7:30am – 9:00am Breakfast at Crocker Dining Hall

SESSION 1 Epidemiology

CO-CHAIRS Daniel Picchietti & Klaus Berger

Daniel Picchietti
How has epidemiological research helped the field of WED/RLS?
Stephen van den Eeden
Opportunities and limits of secondary data sources in WED/RLS research
Klaus Berger
Understanding cross-cultural differences in RLS prevalence
Klaus Berger
Convergence of WED/RLS epidemiological research with genetic,biologic, and other areas of WED/RLS research
Daniel Picchietti & Klaus Berger

SESSION 2 Genetics

CO-CHAIRS Guy Rouleau & Juliane Winkelmann

Juliane Winkelmann
The search for common variants: GWAS studies – an update
Barbara Schormair
The search for rare variants: WES and WGS studies of RLS
Guy Rouleau
Genetic architecture of RLS, including “common variants” and
“rare variants” and thoughts about “missing heritability”
David Rye
From genotype to phenotype in RLS and PLMS
Thomas Meitinger
Summary and discussion

SESSION 3 Animal Models for RLS Phenotype

CO-CHAIRS Bryon Jones &  David Rye

David Rye & Byron Jones
Juliane Winkelmann 
The role of Meis1, a gene nominated by GWAS, in behaviors mimicking RLS
Yunqing Li
The role of Btbd9, a gene nominated by GWAS, in behaviors and iron regulation related to RLS
Subhabrata Sanyal
Ubiquitination in Drosophila as related to RLS
Richard Allen
BXD 40, a mouse that when fed an iron-poor diet, exhibits endo- and exo-phenotypes mimicking RLS
Byron Jones & David Rye

SESSION 4 Spinal and Cortical Excitability/Hyperarousal

CHAIRS Walter Paulus

Imad Ghorayeb
Spinal physiology in non-human primate models of RLS
Cornelius Bachmann
Physiology of spinal sensory processing in RLS alternatively RLS and its relation to pain at a spinal level
Walter Paulus
Spinal excitability and methods of stimulation
Yuping Wang
Cortical excitability
Giuseppe Lanza
Discussion on spinal and cortical excitability hyperarousal
Walter Paulus


CO-CHAIRS Raffaele Ferri &  Stephany Fulda

Raffaele Ferri
Neurophysiologic correlates of PLMS
Brian Koo 
PLMS as a cardiovascular risk factor: evidence and mechanisms
Stephany Fulda
Evidence-based criteria are needed to score PLMS
Dan Picchietti
Discussion on PLMS
Brian Koo, Stephany Fulda, & Raffaele Ferri

SESSION 6 TheRole of Iron

CO-CHAIRS James Connor &  Richard Allen

James Connor
Blood Brain Barrier iron - CSF from RLS patient
Stephanie Patton
Iron – Hypoxia interaction: central and peripheral effects including effects on genes and peripheral myelin
Richard Allen
Pre-clinical and clinical data on effects of iron deficits and iron treatments
Konrad Oexle
Genetic factors of iron
Richard Allen & James Connor

SESSION 7 TheDopaminergic System and RLS: Where Are We and What Next

CO-CHAIRS Chris Earley & Stefan Clemens

Sergi Ferre
DA receptor heteromers as possible new targets for RLS
George Uhl
DAergic systems and cell adhesion molecules. How might they inform us about RLS, augmentation, and novel therapeutic targets
Chris Earley
The state of the DAergic system in RLS
Stefan Clemens
The spinal DAergic system and relevance to RLS
Chris Earley & Stefan Clemens

SESSION 8 Opioids and Pain in RLS

CO-CHAIRS Claudia Trenkwalder & Walter Zieglgänsberger

Walter Zieglgänsberger
The interaction of pain physiology and the opioid system:from animals to humans
Birgit Hogl
The contribution of sleep and sleep deprivation for pain
Sam Ahmedzai
Actions of commonly used opioid medications; mechanisms and actions of opioids
Claudia Trenkwalder
Possible mechanisms of action for opioid treatment in RLS - lessons from clinical trials
Claudia Trenkwalder
Discussion; What type of pain is occurring in RLS patients

SESSION 9 RLS and Cardiovascular Disease: Current Evidence and a Roadmap for Future Research*

CO-CHAIRS John Winkelman & Virend Somers

John Winkelman
Epidemiologic evidence linking RLS and other sleep disorders to cardiovascular disease
Virend Somers
Neural mechanisms linking RLS and other sleep disorders to cardiovascular disease
Daniel Gottlieb
Vascular mechanisms linking RLS and other sleep disorders to cardiovascular disease
Naresh Punjabi
Inflammatory/metabolic mechanisms linking RLS and other sleep disorders to cardiovascular disease
John Winkelman & Virend Somers
Open discussion on how cardiovascular disease relates to RLS.

SESSION 10 Brain Imaging and Connectivity

CO-CHAIRS Giovanni Rizzo & Yong Won Cho

Giovanni Rizzo
Brain MRI in RLS:
1) Iron level to possible structural changes
2) Regional brain metabolic dysfunctions in RLS patients: magnetic resonance spectroscopy findings
Xu Li
Brain iron imaging options, limits  and  relation to RLS biology and clinical features
Sebastiano Galantucci 
Investigating brain connectivity from resting state functional MRI recordings: methodological aspects
Yong Won Cho
Resting state functional MRI assessments in RLS
Giovanni Rizzo & Young Won Cho

SESSION 11 New Treatment Implications of Current Science*

CO-CHAIRS Diego Garcia-Borreguero & Sergi Ferre

Chris Earley
Iron biology relevance for iron treatment of RLS
Diego Garcia Borreguero
Role of drugs acting on the calcium channels
Mauro Manconi
The future of animal models for drug development of RLS; animal models for rapid screening of RLS
Sergi Ferre
Getting mechanistic with new in vivo models of cortico-striatal neurotransmission
Seema Gulyani
Adenosine, iron and relationship to RLS
Diego Garcia Borreguero
Summary discussion of future treatments with interactive questions and answers

SESSION 12 Clinical Updates

CO-CHAIRS Luigi Ferini-Strambi &  S Chokroverty

Marco Zucconi
Summary review of the PLMS task force
Ferini-Strambi & Chokroverty
Discussion of PLMS task force
Mike Silber
Summary review of the treatment algorithm from the augmentation
task force
Ferini-Strambi & Chokroverty
Discussion of treatment algorithm
Bill Ondo
Deep brain stimulation and RLS: Pathophysiology considerations
Ferini-Strambi & Chokroverty
Discussion of DBS and overall summary of clinical updates


Contact us for registration, hotel reservations, and sponsorship opportunities:
Administration Office
Attn: Allan O'Bryan
3270 19th ST NW I Suite 110
Rochester, MN 55901 USA


Collaborative Online Valencia-Based Educational Program

Derived from the IRLSSG 2013 Annual Meeting and the 2013 World Congress on Sleep Medicine held in Valencia, Spain, this online program will incorporate recorded lectures, interviews, supportive slides, and videotapes, to provide updates and summaries on current RLS research and the clinical environment.

Click on the image below to access the online educational program.

for irlssg site


2016 Annual Meeting

International RLS Study Group Annual Meeting 2016

Location: Denver during APSS SLEEP 2016

Date: Sunday, June 12, 2016

Time: 8:00 AM – 8:30 PM

Place: Denver Athletic Club
             1325 Glenarm Pl
             Denver, CO 80204
             Phone:   303-534-1211

Walking Directions from SLEEP:  Exit convention center on 14th ST.  Take right (south-east) one block on 14TH ST.  Located on corner of Glenarm and 14th ST.

Room: Centennial Room

RSVP at:

PDF: IRLSSG Symposium Denver 2016 agenda and directions

Presentations on RLS

RLS and iron

08:00-08:20 AM        Effects of iron deficits and iron treatments

                                         Richard Allen            

08:20-08:40 AM       The genetics of iron regulation and its importance for RLS

                                         Byron Jones


 08:40-09:00 AM       From genotype to phenotype in RLS and PLMS

                                         David Rye

09:00-09:30 AM       Dopaminergic systems and cells adhesion molecules: Novel therapeutic targets

                                        George Uhl

 09:30-10:00 AM       Coffee break

 Treatment implications

 10:00-10:20 AM       Quality measures of RLS care

                                         Denise Sharon

10:20-10:40 AM       Role of drugs acting on calcium channels

                                        Diego Garcia-Borreguero

10:40-11:00 AM       Treatment algorithm from the augmentation task force

                                       Mike Silber

11:00-11:20 AM       RLS and Hypoxia

                                       Ambra Stefani

11:20-11:40 AM       Quantitative Sensory Test for RLS

                                      Yong Won Cho        

11:40-12:00              Withdrawal symptoms from dopaminergic compared to non-dopaminergic RLS treatment

                                      Richard Allen

12:00-12:20 PM       Vitamin D deficiency and treatment in Sicilian ambulatory RLS patients

                                      Rosalia Silvestri

12:20-01:20 PM       Lunch

01:30-02:30 PM       Young Investigator award recipients

 RLS and cardiovascular disease

02:30-03:00 PM        Epidemiology linking RLS and CVD

                                         John Winkelman

 Current controversies

03:00-03:30 PM       RLS Augmentation under opioids vs Opioid induced hyperalgesia

Sudhansu Chokroverty and Diego Garcia-Borreguero

 3:30-4:00 PM           Coffee break

 Business Meeting

4:00-5:30 PM           Business Meeting


 5:30-6:00 PM           Networking, social, and drinks

6:00-8:00 PM           Dinner    (Denver Athletic Club – Denver Room 1)

8:00-8:30 PM           Award recognition and social networking

 Please RSVP (not required but appreciated to confirm lunch and dinner numbers):