project . 2018 - 2020 . Closed


Novel high speed and high resolution microscopy setup for cytoarchitectonic studies of mesoscale sized human brain tissues, healthy and affected by Focal Cortical Dysplasia
Open Access mandate for Publications and Research data
European Commission
Funder: European CommissionProject code: 793849 Call for proposal: H2020-MSCA-IF-2017
Funded under: H2020 | MSCA-IF-EF-ST Overall Budget: 180,277 EURFunder Contribution: 180,277 EUR
Status: Closed
01 Oct 2018 (Started) 30 Sep 2020 (Ended)

The human brain is a massively complex information processing system with a hierarchy of different yet tightly integrated levels of organization. From such intricate interplay emerge our personality, emotions, memory and decision making capabilities, but unwrapping the mysteries of the brain functioning represents a huge challenge. Recent progress in microscopy, neurobiology and neuroinformatics has stimulated the launch of large research programs such as Human Brain Project and BRAIN. An open problem is how to investigate with both high resolution and high speed the brain structure over mesoscale (millimiters to centimeters) sized regions, which would provide unique insight on the neuroanatonomy across different functional areas. This research project will develop a novel dual-view inverted dual-slit confocal light sheet microscope, capable of resolving sub-cellular morphology over centimeter-sized tissues at beyond state of the art acquisition speed. This instrument will be used to perform a comparative cytoarchitectonic investigation of mesoscale human brain tissues, both healthy and affected by Focal Cortical Dysplasia, leveraging an advanced machine learning image analysis algorithm. Such study will greatly advance the medical and neurobiological understanding of the effects of neuro-degenerative pathologies and the obtained data will be contributed to existing human brain atlases as a foundation for brain models. The applicant’s well-rounded skill set, acquired in cold atom physics and ranging from optics to hardware control, is a perfect match for building the proposed setup and for a fruitful two-way transfer of knowledge with the host, expert in advanced neuro microscopy. This research project will strengthen the competitiveness of European science and shine new light on the human brain anatomy, consequently it will raise the applicant's international recognition, and establish him inside Europe as a leading researcher in this quickly evolving field.

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