Beyond the boundaries: Exploring the interplay between the nervous, immune, and muscular systems
Dr Victorio Bambini-Junior, Lecturer in Bioscience in the School of Pharmacy and Biomedical Sciences, has worked on this study that explores how the molecular, cellular and tissue interplay allows these highly complex systems to continuously interact employing in vitro and pre-clinical models.
The research focused particularly on neurodevelopmental disorders such as Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD).
Key collaborating organisations in Brazil included Oswaldo Cruz Foundation (Fiocruz), Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul (UFRGS), Hospital Geral Santa Casa da Misericórdia and Universidade Federal de São Paulo (UNIFESP).
The project was built in collaboration with the Laboratory on Thymus Research from Fundação Oswaldo Cruz (Fiocruz-Brazil) and enabled two senior researchers to perform research and academic activities at UCLan for two years. The researchers participated in teaching programmes at UCLan and worked towards their required training and project objectives. The project generated metabolomic data of different tissues (hippocampus, serum and skeletal muscles) from two pre-clinical models of ASD. The study aims to perform new functional experiments to investigate the role of the altered metabolic pathways during the development of the disease. Four MSc (by Research) students are also currently working on the project under the supervision of both researchers.
The improved scientific and technical skills of both Brazilian researchers will enable a new field of investigation to be established. New strategies for collaboration are now being explored, including joint academic courses and programmes that would impact the formation and training of young scientists in both Brazil and the UK.