UNIV TS - DSV - Neurobiologia Cellulare e Molecolare
The investigations of the Cell and Developmental Neurobiology lab at the University of Trieste (Department of Life Sciences), founded in 2000, are focused on the atrophy of neurons present in neurological disorders including genetic diseases affecting neuronal development, neuropsychiatric disorders, and the major neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease. In particular, we study the mechanisms of neuronal atrophy and the protective role of neurotrophic growth factors such as Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor (BDNF). These neurotrophic factors are produced by nerve cells in response to drugs (e.g. Antidepressants), herbal and nutraceutical compounds and in response to physical activity or rehabilitation therapies. Since some of these neurotrophic factors are detectable in the blood and saliva, their quantification in biological fluids is considered an excellent biomarker in the assessment of well-being, active aging or efficacy of the various treatments of many of the neurodegenerative and psychiatric diseases.