December 14, 2009
NSC Graduate Student, Cory Hussar, Publishes an Article in December 2009 Edition of
Cory Hussar, a 5th year Neuroscience graduate student in Dr. Tania Pasternak's lab (NBA) has published an article in this month's edition of
December 9, 2009
Helen Wei and Youngsun Cho Accepted into MSTP Program
Congratulations to Helen Wei and Youngsun Cho, both recently accepted into the MSTP (MD-PhD program) from the MD-MS Program in Medical Neurobiology. We are delighted to welcome them to a continued and augmented commitment to neuroscience research as they now pursue their PhD candidacy and thesis projects.
November 10, 2009
What do you get when you cross a mouse with poor hearing and a mouse with even worse hearing? Ironically, a new strain of mice with
golden ears- mice that have outstanding hearing as they age.
The work by one of the world's foremost groups in age-related hearing loss, or presbycusis, marks the first time that scientists have created the mouse equivalent of a person with
golden ears- people who are able to retain great hearing even as they grow older. The research at the University of Rochester Medical Center was published online recently in the journal Neurobiology of Aging.
The new mouse is expected to offer clues about how these lucky folks are able to retain outstanding hearing even through old age. Researchers estimate that approximately 5 percent of people, mainly women, fall into this category. The new mice created in the laboratory of Robert Frisina, Ph.D., embody many of the same traits of human
golden earsbecause of an astute cross of two types of mice long popular with researchers.
November 5, 2009
A neurologist and epilepsy expert at the University of Rochester Medical Center has been named editor in chief of one of the world's leading journals devoted to issues involving the brain and central nervous system.
Robert A. Gross M.D., Ph.D., professor of Neurology and of Pharmacology and Physiology, was named today to lead the medical journal Neurology, the world's leading clinical neurology journal. As editor, Gross assumes a major leadership role in the world of neurology, helping set the direction and focus for the discipline worldwide. He will contribute to decisions about which issues are of most importance to physicians and patients, and which new findings and new research avenues are most worthy of attention.
October 9, 2009
Katie McAvoy receives the Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Awards
Congratulations to Kathleen McAvoy, a graduate student in Neuroscience. Katie received Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Awards for Individual Predoctoral Fellows. The title of her grant is, The role of the von-Hippel Lindau protein in developmental cell death in sympathetic neurons.
October 7, 2009
The Society for Neuroscience has given Raphael Pinaud, assistant professor of Brain and Cognitive Sciences, a 2009 Career Development Award in recognition of his contributions in neuroscience.The award recognizes
scientists that have published substantial contributions to science and have shown indications of leadership in ideas for colleagues within the scientific community.
October 1, 2009
The son of two educators, Kerry O'Banion has always adopted a broad view in his scientific pursuits. As an undergraduate at the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign, he investigated pair bonding behavior in common prairie voles, but chose Microbiology for his PhD work because of the promise of immersing himself in molecular biology. Indeed, at the same time he was learning about human pathophysiology and how to do a proper neurological examination as an MD-PhD trainee in the nascent Medical Scholars Program, also at the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign, Kerry entertained working with Carl Woese, who had established the existence of a new kingdom of organisms (Archaea) by sequencing rRNA. Ultimately Kerry carried out his thesis work with Manfred Reichmann in Microbiology and John Sundberg in the Department of Veterinary Pathobiology to characterize and clone novel animal papillomaviruses. All together, he cloned viruses from six animal species and witnessed at national and international conferences the recognition that oncogenic human papillomaviruses caused cervical and other epithelial cancers.
September 30, 2009
A new research center exploring the science underlying a potential new treatment for obsessive-compulsive disorder has been established at the University of Rochester Medical Center, thanks to a $10.5 million award from the National Institute of Mental Health.
Rochester will serve as the hub of a five-year collaborative effort that includes six institutions around the nation and in Puerto Rico. The prestigious Silvio O. Conte Center will link more than 50 researchers who will focus on how deep brain stimulation affects people with obsessive-compulsive disorder.
Obsessive-compulsive disorder is a truly debilitating disease for some patients,said Rochester neuroscientist Suzanne Haber, Ph.D., professor of Pharmacology and Physiology, who heads the center.
While treatment helps most patients lead fulfilling lives, there are a few for whom today’s therapies simply don’t work. Our center is designed to explore the science and the effects of deep-brain stimulation, which has been effective for some other diseases involving the brain, such as Parkinson’s disease.
A new research center exploring the science underlying a potential new treatment for obsessive-compulsive disorder has been established at the University of Rochester Medical Center, thanks to a $10.5 million award from the National Institute of Mental Health (http://www.nimh.nih.gov/index.shtml). Rochester will serve as the hub of a five-year collaborative effort that includes six institutions around the nation and in Puerto Rico.
September 29, 2009
Emmy Awarded to ABC News
PrimetimeStory Featuring Jonathan Mink, M.D., Ph.D.
ABC News was recognized with an Emmy Award from the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences for a Jonathan Mink, M.D., Ph.D. Dr. Mink, a professor of Neurology, Neurobiology & Anatomy, Pediatrics, and Brain & Cognitive Sciences, focuses his reseach on the function of the basal ganglia in normal control of movement and the pathophysiology of basal ganglia disorders characterized by abnormal involuntary movements.
September 9, 2009
First Year PhD Student in Neuroscience Receives the Merritt and Marjorie Cleveland Fellowship Award.
Congratulations to Adam Pallus, 1st year Ph.D. student in Neuroscience for receiving the Merritt and Marjorie Cleveland Fellowship Award. The fund was established in 1991, with a gift from Mr. and Mrs. Merritt Cleveland. The fund supports a first year graduate student entering graduate study through the Graduate Education in the Biomedical Sciences Program with an interest in developing a neuroscience-related research career.
July 28, 2009
A compound strikingly similar to the common food additive that gives M&Ms and Gatorade their blue tint may offer promise for preventing the additional – and serious – secondary damage that immediately follows a traumatic injury to the spinal cord. In an article published online today in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, researchers report that the compound Brilliant Blue G (BBG) stops the cascade of molecular events that cause secondary damage to the spinal cord in the hours following a spinal cord injury, an injury known to expand the injured area in the spinal cord and permanently worsen the paralysis for patients.
This research builds on landmark laboratory findings first reported five years ago by researchers at the University of Rochester Medical Center. In the August 2004 cover story of Nature Medicine, scientists detailed how ATP, the vital energy source that keeps our body's cells alive, quickly pours into the area surrounding a spinal cord injury shortly after it occurs, and paradoxically kills off what are otherwise healthy and uninjured cells.
This surprising discovery marked a milestone in establishing how secondary injury occurs in spinal cord patients. It also laid out a potential way to stop secondary spinal injury, by using oxidized ATP, a compound known to block ATP's effects. Rats with damaged spinal cords who received an injection of oxidized ATP were shown to recover much of their limb function, to the point of being able to walk again, ambulating effectively if not gracefully.
July 24, 2009
Julie Fudge, M.D., Associate Professor of Neurobiology & Anatomy and Psychiatry has co-authored an article in Nature Reviews Neuroscience with Walter Kaye and Martin Paulus. Fudge's lab studies the anatomy and neurochemistry of brain regions associated with symptoms in major psychiatric illnesses such as schizophrenia and mood disorders.
June 15, 2009
Scientists have identified a protein in the brain that plays a key role in the function of mitochondria – the part of the cell that supplies energy, supports cellular activity, and potentially wards off threats from disease.The discovery, which was reported today in the Journal of Cell Biology, may shed new light on how the brain recovers from stroke.
May 16, 2009
Nancy Ann Oberheim Bush, Ph.D., Receives the 2009 Vincent du Vigneaud Award
Congratulations to Nancy Ann Oberheim Bush, Ph.D., for receiving the 2009 Vincent du Vigneaud Award! This award is given annually by the School of Medicine to a graduating student judged to have performed especially meritorious research that stands out for its potential for stimulating and extending research in the field.
May 15, 2009
Neuroscience Alumnus Receives Robert Doty Award
Yasser Elshatory, M.D., Ph.D., a former student in the Neuroscience Graduate Program and Medical Scientist Training Program, has received the Robert Doty Award of Excellence in recognition of outstanding dissertation research in neuroscience. His doctoral thesis, carried out under the direction of Dr. Lin Gan, was in the field of developmental neurobiology and entitled
The LIM-homeodomain protein Islet-1 is a key regulator of restricted neuronal subtypes in the retina and forebrain.
His work uncovered a novel gene network involved in the establishment of restricted neuronal lineages in the developing retina and a similar network important for development of the cholinergic phenotype in the forebrain. Collectively, Dr. Elshatory's thesis research resulted in three first author publications, two in the Journal of Neuroscience and one in the Journal of Comparative Neurology. After graduating, Dr. Elshatory completed an internship in transitional medicine in San Bernardino County, California and is currently an ophthalmology resident at the Dean McGee Eye Institute in Oklahoma City, OK.
Dr. Robert Doty was a leading brain researcher who helped create what is now the world's largest organization of neuroscientists, the Society for Neuroscience. Dr. Doty had served the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry since 1961, a central figure to a team of people that has made the University an internationally recognized powerhouse in neuroscience.
May 11, 2009
Neuroscience Graduate Student Wins Travel Fellowship to International Multisensory Research Forum
Congratulations to Maria Diehl for winning a travel fellowship to attend the 10th International Multisensory Research Forum in New York City. The forum will be held June 29 - July 2 at the City College of New York. Featured keynote speakers this year are Dora Angelaki, Jon Kaas, and Nikos Logothetis.
April 15, 2009
A Rochester researcher whose work has opened up a whole new avenue in Alzheimer's disease research has received a major prize from the American Academy of Neurology.
Berislav Zlokovic, M.D., Ph.D., director of the Center for Neurodegenerative and Vascular Brain Disorders at the University of Rochester Medical Center, will receive the 2009 Potamkin Prize for Research in Pick's, Alzheimer's, and Related Diseases during the AAN annual meeting later this month in Seattle.
April 1, 2009
By doing a set of vigorous visual exercises on a computer every day for several months, patients who had gone partially blind as a result of suffering a stroke were able to regain some vision, according to scientists who published their results in the April 1st issue of the Journal of Neuroscience.
We were very surprised when we saw the results from our first patients,said Krystel Huxlin, Ph.D., the neuroscientist and associate professor who led the study of seven patients at the University of Rochester Flaum Eye Institute.
This is a type of brain damage that clinicians and scientists have long believed you simply can't recover from. It's devastating, and patients are usually sent home to somehow deal with it the best they can.
March 23, 2009
A type of brain cell that was long overlooked by researchers embodies one of very few ways in which the human brain differs fundamentally from that of a mouse or rat, according to researchers who published their findings as the cover story in the March 11 issue of the Journal of Neuroscience.
Scientists at the University of Rochester Medical Center found that human astrocytes, cells that were long thought simply to support flashier brain cells known as neurons that send electrical signals, are bigger, faster, and much more complex than those in mice and rats.
"There aren't many differences known between the rodent brain and the human brain, but we are finding striking differences in the astrocytes. Our astrocytes signal faster, and they're bigger and more complex. This has big implications for how our brains process information," said first author Nancy Ann Oberheim, Ph.D., a medical student who recently completed her doctoral thesis on astrocytes.
January 5, 2009
Although AIDS is not usually considered a neurological disorder, the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) can and does attack the brain—resulting in tremors, memory impairments, even dementia. Researchers have now identified a route through which the virus wreaks havoc on brain cells. The finding, appearing online in the November 14th issue of the open-access journal PLoS One, may point to new approaches for treating a phase of the disease that is ominously on the increase.