Neuroscienze Traslazionali e Neurotecnologie

  • Soggiorni di studio all'estero: 3 mesi
  • Obiettivi formativiThe PhD program in Translational Neurosciences and Neurotechnologies is a joint PhD program between the University of Ferrara and the Fondazione Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia. The PhD program is committed to educating scholars who will lead highly qualified public or private biomedical and bioengineering research activities, both at national and international level. The educational goal of the PhD program is to provide the necessary expertise to conduct Neuroscience research involving a very high technological content, targeting Translational/Clinical, Electrophysiological, Nano-Biotechnological and Pharmacological fields of investigation. The aim is to develop innovative strategies for the management and rehabilitation of nervous system disorders and for the design of brain machine interfaces, in particular with regard to restoring interaction and communication functions. Moreover, multimodal language recognition and brain mechanisms involved in inter-individual communication will be addressed. All activities will rely on innovative approaches of data analysis, from machine learning to neuroimaging.  Last but not least, ethical and foundational implications will be investigated in order to identify and address the ethical issues connected to the development of the newly developed treatment technologies.  In addition to the scientific goals, the PhD program aims to create a new generation of multidisciplinary and broad-minded researchers.
    The foreseen employment opportunities after graduation are within institutions both at national and international level, such as: Universities, public or private Research Centers, Bioengineering, Pharmaceutical, Biomedical and Biotechnology Companies, National Health Institutes.  Graduates that will choose to address issues related to nervous system disorders,  acquiring specific expertise in organizing and conducting clinical trials regarding novel therapeutic and diagnostic systems, will be able to find prominent job positions for developing  clinical trial research programs.
  • Curriculum: no
  • Programma formativo: within the PhD program the following strategic themes have been identified: A) Neurophysiology of Communication and Neurotechnologies; B) Pre-clinical Neurosciences; C) Clinical Neurosciences (Neurology, Psychiatry, Neurovascular, Neuro-rehabilitation); D) Data analysis and modeling; E) Ethical and foundational topics.
    The PhD program will provide adequate training in fundamental disciplines (for example, physiology, neurology, epidemiology, statistics, genetics, nanoscience, electrochemistry, neuroinformatics,  signal analysis) that will complete individual curricula. Such integration will be accomplished during the first year of the PhD program, following courses provided by the University of Ferrara. Moreover, during all the PhD program, students will be involved in applied training activities within their specific laboratories.  These activities will include the participation to seminar series and short courses, report preparation, presenting personal research activity and journal club presentations. During the PhD program, research opportunities within institutions that are part of the collaboration network of the Doctoral School Committee will be possible. All PhD students are required to submit a written report at the end of each year and to hold a public discussion of research results at the presence of the Doctoral School Committee and the other PhD students. The preparation of the final PhD thesis will be followed by the Doctoral School Committee that will take advantage of an independent panel of scientist for the review. All PhD students are strongly encouraged to publish their research results in the best and most authoritative international scientific journals.

  • Tematiche di ricerca: in the frame of the doctorate course the following fields of research will be developed: A) Neurophysiology of Communication and Neurotechnologies, B) Preclinical Neurosciences, C) Clinical Neurosciences (Neurology, Psychiatry, Neurovascular, Neurorehabilitation) D) data analysis and models, E) ethical issues. The candidates are expected to present a concise but clear research project, written in English (max 3 pages), divided in: introduction, methods, expected results, discussion, relevant bibliography. The project does not commit the candidate as far as the future research program is concerned.  The candidates are invited to report the theme code (e.g. A03, C11, etc.) at the beginning of their project.
    A) Neurophysiology of Communication and Neurotechnologies
    A01 Improving performance and biocompatibility of electrode arrays for brain-computer interfaces
    A02 Functional investigation of innovative neural interfaces
    A03 Investigation of sensorimotor functions in animal models (NH primates and rats)
    A04 Machine learning applications to multimodal brain and speech signals
    A05 Human neurophysiology of speech and sensorimotor communication
    A06 Cortical recordings in human patients during awake Neurosurgery
    A07 Hardware and software development for innovative exploration of brain signals
    B) Preclinical Neurosciences
    B01 Innovative treatments for epilepsy
    B02 Identification and validation of novel pharmacological targets for Parkinson disease
    B03 Pharmacology of peptidergic systems
    B04 Role of ligands and receptors of the TNF family in CNS physiology and pathology
    B05 Identification of novel pharmacological targets for stroke
    B06 Biomarkers of brain ischemia and reperfusion
    B07 Small GTPases in cellular signaling
    B08 Molecular genetics of familial neurodegeneration
    B09 Neurobiology of Parkinson´s disease
    C) Clinical Neurosciences
    C01 Lifestyle and early life risk factors for adult and pediatric multiple sclerosis
    C02 Descriptive epidemiology, environmental and genetic factors in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis
    C03 Epidemiology and genetics of hereditary spastic para-paresis
    C04 Improving adherence of disease modifying treatments in multiple sclerosis
    C05 Burden-of-disease studies of brain disorders
    C06 Epidemiology of stroke
    C07 Clinical studies and risk factors of juvenile stroke
    C08 Revascularization therapy in acute ischemic stroke
    C09 Biomarkers for disease activity, axonal damage and immunological effects of therapies in demyelinating pathologies of the Central and Peripheral Nervous System
    C10 Assessment and models of brain circulation
    C11 Cerebral venous return in relation to brain perfusion and CSF flow
    C12 The contribution of the heart brain axis to neurovascular and neurodegenerative diseases
    C13 Cerebral lymphatic and venous drainage
    C14 Adipose derived stem cells
    C15 Innovative treatments in motor recovery after brain injury  by electromechanical-assisted training (robotic devices ) for walking and arm functioning
    C16 New strategies available for patients with neurological diseases: transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS)
    C17 Study of the process of neural plasticity by identifying clinical and circulating biomarkers that may aid in monitoring efficacy of rehabilitation and functional recovery
    C18 Clinical Neurophysiology: new approaches
    C19 Neuroscientific approach to severe psychiatric illness
    C20 Demoralization and depression in medical pathologies: psycho-neurobiological implications
    C21 Psycho-neurobiological aspects of personality disorders
    D) Data Analysis and Models
    D01 Advanced machine learning techniques for gene regulatory networks analysis
    D02 Latest generation neuroimaging techniques for brain mapping and diseases
    D03 Real-time data acquisition and modeling of physiological signals
    E) Ethical and Foundational Issues
    E01 Ethical implications of translational and clinical neurosciences
    E02 Epistemological robustness of clinical trials
    E03 Population level versus individual patient level.