CORVALLIS, Ore. - Oregon State University will host its 35th annual gerontology conference April 7-8, with geriatric experts presenting more than 40 educational workshops for health and human service professionals and the public.

The conference will include sessions on nutrition, dementia, pain management, gluten intolerance, health care law, sleep disorders, and accessible gardening for the elderly.

Author Melanie Thernstrom, who lives near Portland, Ore., will be the keynote speaker on April 7. Thernstrom wrote "The Pain Chronicles," a New York Times bestseller that traces conceptions of pain throughout the ages and weaves in first-person reflections on her own battle with chronic pain.

Paul Ciechanowski, an associate professor of psychiatry at the University of Washington, and Elaine Sanchez, the author of "Letters from Madelyn," will be keynote speakers the second day. Ciechanowski will speak about a method for reducing depression in older adults. Sanchez, who lives in Salem, Ore., will offer advice to help caregivers cope with anger, guilt, depression and grief and understand the importance of caring for themselves.

Registration costs $195 for both days and $105 for one day for those who sign up on or before April 1. After that, the one-day fee rises to $130 and the two-day fee is $220. Discounts are available for students, OSU employees and members of the OSU Retirement Association.

To register, go to or call 541-737-9300. Attendees can also register at the door.

The conference will take place at the CH2M-Hill Alumni Center.

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Sunita Vasdev, 541-737-2261