Ongoing Projects


Consolidation of Emotional Memory During Sleep in Elderly (317A_2020)
Investigator: Mgr. Adéla Plechatá
Co-investigators: Mgr. Daniela Urbaczka Dudysová, MA,Mgr. Karolina Janků, Mgr. Petra Skalníková
Duration: 1.1.2020–31.12.2020
Amount of support IFC: 107 000 CZK
Abstract: The main goal of this research is to discover how the perception of reality and storage of emotional content changes during aging and correlates with the structure of sleep, namely the age specific characteristics of NREM and REM sleep and the microstructure of sleep. We will focus on healthy individuals with no cognitive disorders in order to identify the general relationship of age, sleep and emotional memory. We hope to bring more light into the topic of the existing socioemotional  hypothesis explain the shift of superior memory recall from negative to positive stimuli in elderly.

Simulation of the Magnetic Resonance Imaging Examination in Virtual Reality (318A_2020)
Investigator: Mgr. et Mgr. Iveta Fajnerová, Ph.D.
Co-investigators:  Mgr. Anna Francová, Bc. Václav Sahula, Mgr. Adéla Plechatá
Duration: 1.1.2020–31.11.2020
Amount of support IFC: 110 000 CZK
Abstract: Magnetic resonance imaging is an important part of NUDZ research projects and clinical evaluation of patients. Given the time demands and financial costs associated with the MRI examination, the cooperation of the research volunteers is crucial. However, concerns or insufficient education of the participants may lead to refusal to participate in the study or complications during the examination itself (excessive movement of the examined person, misunderstanding of the task performed, premature termination of the examination due to discomfort, etc.). The aim of the project is therefore to create a simulation of the MRI examination procedure in the virtual reality environment, which can be used for the training of situations and tasks that the participant performs during the examination. The outcome of the project will be a software tool that can be used by all NUDZ employees (using MRI examination as a research or clinical evaluation method) for preparing assessed persons prior to magnetic resonance imaging.

Adaptation of AVLT Test for Population with Hearing Impairment - pilot study (319A_2020)
Investigator: PhDr. Marie Bendová
Duration: 1.1.2020–30.11.2020
Amount of support IFC: 55 000 Kč
Abstract: This project supports the PhD project of Marie Bendová which explores the relationship between language and motorics using current neuroimaging methods (especially fMRI) of both general population and the population of people with hearing impairments. In addition to the experimental part of the mentioned project, the conversion of neuropsychological methods into sign language is included. The AVLT – Auditory Verbal Learning Test – specifically. The grant project aspires to create a suitable method of administration which will respect the specific communication and consequently allow it to be used by specialists. Obtaining information in this area will support the current state of knowledge in the field of neuropsychology and in the field of information on ways of working with people with hearing impairment, one that will be applicable to the everyday practice of psychologists in both clinical and social field.

Characteristics of Circadian Clocks in Cerebral Organoids Generated from Human Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells (320A_2020)
Investigator: Mgr. Kamila Weissová
Co-investigators: Mgr. Aneta Petrušková, Mgr. Kateřina Skálová
Duration: 1.1.2020–30.11.2020
Amount of support IFC:  110 000 CZK
Abstract: In the last few years the cerebral organoids brought a lot of new scientific challenges and questions, especially in neuroscience field. Cerebral organoids display a 3D model of developing and also the mature human brain that could be used as a potentially suitable in vitro model for some neuropsychiatric disease. The major advantage of this model is using induced pluripotent stem cells generated from patient’s somatic cells. Recently there had been successful studies using cerebral organoids generated from patients with autistic spectrum disorder or patients with Alzheimer disease. Molecular human circadian clocks had been studied only in peripheral human tissue so far. However neuropsychiatric research require models that would allow testing the effect of specific receptors agonists and antagonists. Characterization circadian clock in cerebral organoids could be used as great model that could fill the gap in human circadian studies and in neuropsychiatric research.

Research on Cognitive Deficit and Brain Plasticity - University of Copenhagen (321B_2020)
Investigator: Mgr. Adéla Plechatá
Duration: 1.9.2020–31.10.2020
Amount of support IFC: 68 000 CZK
Abstract: The goal of internship at the University of Copenhagen and the Department of Neurology in Copenhagen is to acquire new knowledge and skills in the field of brain plasticity, virtual reality in neurorehabilitation and in the study of cognitive functions. A stay abroad will allow the student to localize virtual cognitive tasks created in NUDZ into Danish language and validate them in neurological patients. As a result, these tools will be implemented in practice at the Department of Neurology in Copenhagen, leading to greater cooperation between the University of Copenhagen and the NIMH. During her stay, the student will join the emerging virtual reality laboratory within the Unit for cognitive neuroscience and will participate in the development of a new virtual reality application for the study of cognition and in the subsequent analysis of the acquired data.

Risk of Psychiatric Hospitalization in People with Juvenile Rheumatologic Illness: Register Data Based Study (323B_2020)
Investigator: Mgr. Karolína Mladá
Duration: 18.2.2020–17.3.2020
Amount of support IFC: 68 000 CZK

Virtual Reality in Studying Social Cognition in Borderline Personality Disorder - a Pilot Study (324B_2020)
Invastigator: Mgr. Anna Francová
Duration 1.4.2020–31.5.2020
Amount of support IFC: 68 000 CZK
Abstract: The goal of the research internship will be gaining knowledge about conducting experiments combining virtual reality (VR) and physiological measures. Specifically, how is it possible to enhance VR device with ECG biosensors and how to manipulate an embodiment within virtual environment. This will be evaluated by a pilot experiment conducted at Berlin School of Mind and Brain and subsequently used for a PhD project exploring impulsive reactions of patients with borderline personality disorder (BPD) on virtual social situations inducing social stress. During the internship, basic social situations in VR will be used to study reactions of healthy volunteers that will observe interactions of virtual avatars from both first- and third-person perspective; the reactions in these conditions will be compared. After every situation (e.g., waving, threatening) the respondent will be asked to choose a reaction in different levels of engagement (e.g., turning away, handshaking, reciprocating aggression) and/or to evaluate a context of a presented situation. Research participants will include 20-30 healthy volunteers. Participants' BPD traits and current physiological state will be assessed.





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