Tech transfer – success story: "Why White Matter Matters: Novel strategies for targeting glia and promoting brain repair"


The nervous system comprises of two major neural cell types – Neurons and Glia. The function of neurons is clear – they transmit information by electrical and chemical signalling mechanisms. In essence they are the ‘thinking’ cells of the brain. In contrast, glia are the glue of the brain – the name glia literally comes from the Greek for glue. This is not a misnomer – without glia the brain falls apart both structurally and functionally. As such, glia are involved in every neuropathology. The overall aim of our studies is to provide new fundamental knowledge that may lead to the identification of novel cellular and molecular targets for the treatment of neurodegenerative and neuropsychological pathologies, such as bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, Alzheimer’s disease and Multiple Sclerosis. In this lecture, I will provide an overview of some of the recent studies in my lab that have focussed on brain homeostatic mechanisms and myelination.


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