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Characterization of the role of IL10 on cognitive performance in order to study the relationship between the brain and the immune system
Portugal (PorMSIC) - University of Minho, Braga
Life and Health Sciences Research Institute (ICVS) Universidade do Minho Campus de Gualtar
Cláudia Miranda and Susana Roque
English, Portuguese, Spanish
Type of Research Project
- Basic science
What is the background of the project?
The crosstalk between the immune and the nervous systems is known to be essential for the maintenance of the body homeostasis in general and, in particular, for the correct functioning of the central nervous system. In fact, disruption in the brain/immune communication is associated with mood and cognitive alterations. Previous studies from our lab revealed that mice lacking the expression of the anti-inflammatory interleukin 10 (IL10KO mice) present depressive-like behavior, a phenotype that is rescued through IL10 administration. Recently we observed that the absence of IL10 is associated with cognitive impairment in female mice. Moreover, preliminary results also suggest that female IL10KO mice also present alterations on the immune cells profile. Currently, we are unraveling the mechanisms that could be associated with the alterations observed in the cognitive performance of IL10 KO female mice.
What is the aim of the project?
The aim of the project is to evaluate the immune profile of IL10KO mice with cognitive impairment. Furthermore this project aims to explore the cytokine milieu of the brain meninges and CSF (Cerebrospinal fluid) and analyze the neuronal plasticity and hippocampal cell proliferation.
What techniques and methods are used?
The first step in two evaluate cell counting, sorting and proliferation in the CSF in a IL10 KO female mice using flow cytometry. The mice will be under a brain stereological analysis to measure inflammatory and neurotrophin mRNA by quantitative reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR) and to analyze the neuronal plasticity and hippocampal. Through the three techniques mentioned above we will be able to evaluate the immune profile of IL10KO with cognitive impairment and the mechanisms involved in these alterations.
What is the role of the student?
- The student will observe the practical experiments but will be highly involved in the analysis of the results
- The tasks will be done under supervision
What are the tasks expected to be accomplished by the student?
The student is expected to learn how to perform flow cytometry, qPCR and/or brain stereological analysis. Initially, the student will watch the tutors perform the techniques mentioned and will be given theoretical support and then, if the tutor recognizes that the student can perform them on his/her own, we will be able to. The student is also expected to understand how mice colony management work and the methods behind it but we will acquire them during the exchange.
Will there be any theoretical teaching provided (preliminary readings, lectures, courses, seminars etc)
There will be theoretical teaching given through preliminary readings mention below in the article section.
What is expected from the student at the end of the research exchange? What will be the general outcome of the student?
- No specific outcome is expected
What skills are required of the student? Is there any special knowledge or a certain level of studies needed?
No special skills required
Are there any legal limitations in the student’s involvement
Type of students accepted
This project accepts: - Medical students
- L-10 modulates depressive-like behavior. Mesquita AR; Correia-Neves M; Roque S; Castro AG; Vieira P; Pedrosa J; Palha JA; Sousa N. J Psychiatr Res. 2008 Dec; 43(2):89-97. [PMID:18394646]
- Interleukin-10: a key cytokine in depression? Roque S; Correia-Neves M; Mesquita AR; Palha JA; Sousa N. Cardiovasc Psychiatry Neurol. 2009;2009:187894. doi: 10.1155/2009/187894.Epub 2009 Aug 16.PMID: 19936104 Free PMC ArticleSimilar articles. [PMID:19936104]
- Effector memory CD4(+) T cells are associated with cognitive performance in a senior population. Serre-Miranda C; Roque S; Santos NC; Portugal-Nunes C; Costa P; Palha JA; Sousa N; Correia-Neves M. Neurol Neuroimmunol Neuroinflamm. 2014 Dec 23; 2(1):e54. [PMID:25566544]
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