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On November 6, VIB and KU Leuven opened the NextGenQBio platform. This state-of-the-art project was granted to VIB and the Stem Cell Institute Leuven (SCIL) within the purview of the Hercules Foundation financing for large scale research infrastructure.
The human brain is a tricky study subject. Brain scans are still limited in resolution and the knowledge they can provide, and in vitro approaches are not yet able to fully replicate the important micro-environment of brain cells. A new method developed by the lab of Bart De Strooper (VIB-KU Leuven Center for Brain & Disease Research) pioneers the transplantation of human microglia cells into mice brains. Their work appears in Nature Neuroscience.
VIB and Nikon are happy to announce that they are extending their partnership, as the VIB-KU Leuven BioImaging Core is becoming a Nikon Center of Excellence. This is good news for the scientific community that has a need for excellent imaging equipment.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), neurological disorders, ranging from epilepsy to Alzheimer’s disease, affect up to one billion people worldwide. These neurological disorders affect people in all countries, irrespective of age, sex, education, or income. The impact of these conditions on healthcare systems across the globe is enormous, and with an aging population in many countries this burden is likely to increase. Patients do not only experience difficulties in the practicalities of life, but also in their emotional and psychological experiences.
Primary immune deficiency diseases (PIDs) are a heterogeneous group of life-threatening genetic disorders of the innate and adaptive immune system. To date, there is still a lot of under-diagnosis as PIDs are very complex and can present clinically in many forms. A large number of PID patients remain undiagnosed or get a label of undefined PID, preventing the design of a rational therapeutic approach.
A collaboration between the laboratories of Vincent Bonin (NERF, empowered by VIB, imec and KU Leuven) and Matthew Holt (VIB-KU Leuven Center for Brain & Disease Research) reveals that noradrenaline plays a key role in how astrocytes – star-shaped cells in the brain closely associated with neurons – track distinct information during behavior.
The VIB-KU Leuven Center for Brain & Disease Research has attracted two new faculty members in an international search for talent. Sandrine Da Cruz worked in San Diego and in Leuven she will lead a laboratory focusing on the mechanisms of ALS, while Lynette Lim worked in London and she will lead a group focusing on the development of neuronal circuits.
Researchers led by Pierre Vanderhaeghen and Jérôme Bonnefont (VIB-KU Leuven and ULB), in collaboration with Stein Aerts (VIB KU Leuven) and François Guillemot (Crick Institute), have unraveled a new mechanism controlling the switch between growth and differentiation of neural stem cells during brain development. They discovered a specific factor that makes stem cells ‘deaf’ to proliferative signals, which in turn causes them to differentiate into neurons and shape the marvelous complexity of our brain.
We call for increased emphasis on brain research in the strategic plan for Horizon Europe. Sign our petition!
New FWO fellowships for several of our researchers - congrats!