Early Stage Researchers
What is your project/research about?
Project: Early markers of microglial activation and neural distress. Microglia activation is thought to be a driving force of neurodegeneration, but confirmatory evidence is still elusive and biomarkers have not been identified. In particular, the possible relationship between cause and consequence for microglia activation and pathological landmarks, such as neuronal cell death and demyelination in adult vs neonatal age is still disputed. In this project I used two rat models of diseases in which microglia activation and neurodegeneration interact, to try to identify a very early marker for microglia activation as compared to neural distress markers. I performed a time-course investigation based on a discovery strategy of inflammation using high-throughput technologies in order to highlight the potential of novel early biomarkers in adult experimental allergic encephalomyelitis (EAE) and neonatal hypoxia ischemia (HI) models.
Why did you apply for a Marie Curie ITN and especially this project?
When I applied to the Marie Curie programme, I did not have the faintest idea of the fantastic experience I would have for the next three years! I have always been interested in research, to a whole different world in terms of science and research, being a Marie Curie ESR was a dream come true. I choosed project that I am involved in, because I was intrested on microglia cells and their involvment on neuroinflammation.
What is so fascinating for you on research in general?
Plunging into a life of research is always fascinating for me, as it involves continuous, sustained learning. There is nothing more gratifying than a profession that constantly enables one to learn new things.
What do you do in your free time?
I am a basketball player and I do play 3 times/week. Otherwise I like traveling and learning new languages.
What are your plans for your future?
I would greatly appreciate the opportunity to continue in the field of research in neuroimmunology to understand the fundamental molecular mechanisms and cellular pathways that underline various neuroinflammatory disorders affecting the human nervous system.
Regarding our meetings:
Please give a short summary what you remember about are Network Meetings?
Actually I remember all our network meetings. For me each meeting was special with the different lectures.
What are the impressions and learnings you take with you from each meeting?
Being part of such network is really a two way street: giving and receiving. I have watched and been inspired by so many people in the network that have given me the courage, strength and power of example to keep going and get through. A part the scientific part that every time we learn something new I learned how to manage my time and how to be strong and face the problems.
What was the most useful workshop?
The most useful workshop was about the statistic because it was really specific on what we are doing and it was direct teacher-student relation about each one of us has the opportunity to talk about his project and the statistic problem that he/she faces.