NEUROPHARMACOLOGY, NEUROEPIGENETICS, NEURODEGENERATION AND AGEING

Principal Investigators

Jaume del Valle

Assistant Professor

Neuroinmune interactions at CNS interfaces

Christian Griñan-Ferre

Assistant Professor

Neuroepigenetics in ageing and Alzheimer’s disease

Gemma Navarro

Associate Professor

Neuropharmacology in drug addiction and neurodegeneration

Merce Pallas

Full Professor

Neuropharmacology in ageing and Alzheimer’s disease

Carme Pelegri

Associate Professor

Polyglucosan structures and neo-epitopes in ageing and neurodegeneration

Jordi Vilaplana

Associate Professor

Biomarkers of neurodegeneration and brain ageing

Research team

 

Anna Maria Canudas

Associate Professor

 

Elisabet Auge

Postdoctoral Researcher

 

Aina Bellver

Early Stage Researcher

 

Julia Companys

Early Stage Researcher

 

Julia Jarne-Ferrer

Early Stage Researcher

 

Jaume Lillo

Early Stage Researcher

 

Alejandro Lillo

Early Stage Researcher

 

Catalina Perez

Early Stage Researcher

 

M. Dolors Puigoriol

Early Stage Researcher

 

Iu Raïch

Early Stage Researcher

 

Marta Riba

Early Stage Researcher

 

Rafael Rivas

Early Stage Researcher

 

Clara Romera

Early Stage Researcher

 

Iraida Tena

Early Stage Researcher

 

Fonteini Vasilopoulou

Early Stage Researcher

Research Interest

 

Ageing is a significant risk factor for dementia and neurodegenerative diseases. Understanding the molecular basis of these brain circumstances is important for attaining their prevention and treatment. This programme focuses on unveiling the mechanisms implicated in neurodegeneration, including epigenetics and drug addiction. In addition, the validation of new pharmacological targets by using small molecules is one of our deals. Also, it includes the study of some polyglucosan structures that appear in these conditions, to find biomarkers related to them, and to study the neuroimmune interactions at central nervous system interfaces also detecting protein-protein interactions.

Technologies & Methods

 

  • Advanced and Confocal Microscopy
  • Behavioral assays: Open Field, Elevated Plus Maze, Novel Object Recognition Test, Morris Water Maze, T-Maze for Mice
  • Behaviour assays in mice and C. elegans
  • C. elegans (in vitro) as a model in neurodegeneration
  • Cell signalling
  • Chemotaxic Assay, Motility Assay, Toxicity, among others for C. elegans
  • Cloning
  • Flow citometry
  • Histological techniques
  • Image analysis
  • Immunohistochemical and immunocytochemical staining
  • In situ hybridisation
  • Isolation and purification of tissue components
  • Mice (in vivo) models of aging (SAMP8) and Alzheimer’ disease (5XFAD)
  • Resonant energy transfer techniques
  • Proteomic and genomic analysis, including NGS techniques (RNA-Seq, miRNA-seq, among others)
  • Proximity Ligation assays
  • Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM)
  • Transmission Electron Microscopy (TEM)

Featured Projects

 

    • Efectos protectores del Cannabidiol en ictus neonatal y de adulto: Estudio preclínico detallado de los mecanismos moleculares de acción en un modelo de rata. MCOC – Ministerio de Economia y Competitividad. SAF2017-84117-R. Gemma Navarro Brugal

 

    • Estudio de la presencia de neo-epítopos en estructuras degenerativas cerebrales y de la existencia en el plasma de anticuerpos naturales dirigidos contra dichos neo-epítopos. Ministerio de Economía y Competitividad. BFU2016-78398-P. Carme Pelegri i Jordi Vilaplana

 

    • Inhibidors de l’epòxid hidrolasa soluble per fer front a la malaltia de Niemman-Pick C. Agència de Gestió d’Ajuts Universitaris i de Recerca. 2018 LLAV 00007. Merce Pallas

 

    • Modulation of soluble epoxide hydrolase (sEH) in brain and peripheral tissues: role of the intestinal-brain axis in neurodegeneration. Ministerio de Ciencia Innovación y Universidades. PID2019-106285RB-C21. Merce Pallas

 

    • Monitoring the onset and evolution of neuronal dysfunctions. AMZA – Alzheimer’s Association. AARFD-17-503612. Gemma Navarro Brugal

 

    • Products SDP on aging-hallmarks by using the Caenorhabditis elegans (C. elegans). APC Europe, S.A.. 310813. Merce Pallas i Christian Griñan-Ferre APC Europe, S.A.. 310813. Merce Pallas i Christian Griñan-Ferre

 

    • Study of Biosearch Life products on AD-hallmarks by using the Caenorhabditis elegans (C. elegans). Biosearch life S.A. 310796. Merce Pallas i Christian Griñan-Ferre

Featured Publications

 

    • Vasilopoulou, F., Rodríguez-Arévalo, S., Bagán, A., Escolano, C., Griñán-Ferré, C., & Pallàs, M. (2021). Disease-modifying treatment with I2 imidazoline receptor ligand LSL60101 in an Alzheimer’s disease mouse model: A Comparative study with donepezil. British Journal of Pharmacology, 10.1111/bph.15478. Advance online publication. https://doi.org/10.1111/bph.15478

 

    • Gnad, T., Navarro, G., Lahesmaa, M., Reverte-Salisa, L., Copperi, F., Cordomi, A., Naumann, J., Hochhäuser, A., Haufs-Brusberg, S., Wenzel, D., Suhr, F., Jespersen, N. Z., Scheele, C., Tsvilovskyy, V., Brinkmann, C., Rittweger, J., Dani, C., Kranz, M., Deuther-Conrad, W., Eltzschig, H. K., … Pfeifer, A. (2020). Adenosine/A2B Receptor Signaling Ameliorates the Effects of Aging and Counteracts Obesity. Cell Metabolism, 32(1), 56–70.e7. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cmet.2020.06.006

 

    • Companys-Alemany, J., Turcu, A. L., Bellver-Sanchis, A., Loza, M. I., Brea, J. M., Canudas, A. M., Leiva, R., Vázquez, S., Pallàs, M., & Griñán-Ferré, C. (2020). A Novel NMDA Receptor Antagonist Protects against Cognitive Decline Presented by Senescent Mice. Pharmaceutics, 12(3), 284. https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmaceutics12030284

 

    • Griñán-Ferré, C., Codony, S., Pujol, E., Yang, J., Leiva, R., Escolano, C., Puigoriol-Illamola, D., Companys-Alemany, J., Corpas, R., Sanfeliu, C., Pérez, B., Loza, M. I., Brea, J., Morisseau, C., Hammock, B. D., Vázquez, S., Pallàs, M., & Galdeano, C. (2020). Pharmacological Inhibition of Soluble Epoxide Hydrolase as a New Therapy for Alzheimer’s Disease. Neurotherapeutics, 17(4), 1825–1835. https://doi.org/10.1007/s13311-020-00854-1

 

    • Riba, M., Augé, E., Campo-Sabariz, J., Moral-Anter, D., Molina-Porcel, L., Ximelis, T., Ferrer, R., Martín-Venegas, R., Pelegrí, C., & Vilaplana, J. (2019). Corpora amylacea act as containers that remove waste products from the brain. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 116(51), 26038–26048. https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1913741116

 

    • Augé, E., Bechmann, I., Llor, N., Vilaplana, J., Krueger, M., & Pelegrí, C. (2019). Corpora amylacea in human hippocampal brain tissue are intracellular bodies that exhibit a homogeneous distribution of neo-epitopes. Scientific Reports, 9(1), 2063. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-018-38010-7

 

    • Griñán-Ferré, C., Marsal-García, L., Bellver-Sanchis, A., Kondengaden, S. M., Turga, R. C., Vázquez, S., & Pallàs, M. (2019). Pharmacological inhibition of G9a/GLP restores cognition and reduces oxidative stress, neuroinflammation and β-Amyloid plaques in an early-onset Alzheimer’s disease mouse model. Aging, 11(23), 11591–11608. https://doi.org/10.18632/aging.102558

 

    • Augé, E., Pelegrí, C., Manich, G., Cabezón, I., Guinovart, J. J., Duran, J., & Vilaplana, J. (2018). Astrocytes and neurons produce distinct types of polyglucosan bodies in Lafora disease. Glia, 66(10), 2094–2107. https://doi.org/https://doi.org/10.1002/glia.23463

 

    • Navarro, G., Cordomí, A., Casadó-Anguera, V., Moreno, E., Cai, N. S., Cortés, A., Canela, E. I., Dessauer, C. W., Casadó, V., Pardo, L., Lluís, C., & Ferré, S. (2018). Evidence for functional pre-coupled complexes of receptor heteromers and adenylyl cyclase. Nature Communications, 9(1), 1242. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41467-018-03522-3

 

    • Navarro, G., Borroto-Escuela, D., Angelats, E., Etayo, Í., Reyes-Resina, I., Pulido-Salgado, M., Rodríguez-Pérez, A. I., Canela, E. I., Saura, J., Lanciego, J. L., Labandeira-García, J. L., Saura, C. A., Fuxe, K., & Franco, R. (2018). Receptor-heteromer mediated regulation of endocannabinoid signaling in activated microglia. Role of CB1 and CB2 receptors and relevance for Alzheimer’s disease and levodopa-induced dyskinesia. Brain, Behavior, and Immunity, 67, 139–151. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.bbi.2017.08.015

Knowledge transfer & Innovation

 

    • Composiciones para uso en el tratamiento de trastornos cognitivos. PCT/ES2020/070005

 

    • Composition for use in treatment of cognitive disorders. PCT/EP2021/050270

 

    • Compounds as a soluble epoxide hydrolase inhibitors. UBTT0307

 

    • Methods of Treating Behavior Alterations. WO/2019/025588; PCT/EP201

 

    • Synthetic I2 imidazoline receptor ligands for prevention or treatment of human brain disorders. PCT/EP2018/085742

 

    • Synthetic I2 imidazoline receptor ligands for prevention or treatment of human brain disorders. UBTT0327