UAntwerp and UNamur join forces to advance research on spinal cord injury with the support of Wings for Life

Prof. Daniele Bertoglio (Bio-Imaging Lab, UAntwerp) and Prof. Charles Nicaise (Laboratory Neurodegeneration and Regeneration, NARILIS, UNamur) are about to start a new collaborative research project aimed at developing noninvasive imaging biomarkers for spinal cord injury. This ambitious research will be made possible thanks to funding from Wings for Life, a spinal cord research foundation.

In vivo imaging of synaptic and white matter integrity as noninvasive biomarkers

Through this project, UNamur and UAntwerp will synergize their expertise in neuroscience, bioimaging and animal disease modeling. The goal of this collaboration is to establish new ways to measure the damage caused by spinal cord injuries and to predict patient recovery.

Using cutting-edge medical imaging techniques (MRI and PET), the researchers will evaluate synaptic as well as white matter changes following spinal cord injury in a clinically relevant in vivo model. The project will study how these imaging findings are linked over time to functional deficits, as well as how they relate to behavioral deficits and blood biomarkers. The researchers will then explore whether those imaging readouts can predict the severity of the trauma. Finally, this project will assess the utility of synaptic density and white matter imaging following therapy and investigate how they can provide an unbiased readout of therapeutic efficacy. Read more

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