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Clinical imaging methods – A special interest group

Brain scan. Photo.

Imaging methods are valuable tools for understanding neurodegenerative diseases and monitoring the therapeutic effects of new treatments. That is why MultiPark researchers with expertise in clinical imaging gather across research groups. Clinical imaging methods is a new special interest group (SIG) addressing scientific and technological needs to apply these methods in research. Nicola Spotorno tells about how he will convene the joint effort together with Markus Nilsson.

Can you briefly describe the research topics included in your SIG? 

Our focus is on the development of new imaging-based biomarkers for monitoring the early phases of neurodegenerative processes and, potentially, the response to disease-modifying treatments. We do this by combining multiple modalities, including MRI, PET, fluid-based markers and genetics, to clarify the biological processes leading to neurodegenerative conditions. We also leverage data from deeply phenotyped cohorts to investigate heterogeneity and protective factors in both typical aging and neurodegenerative conditions

Which of MultiPark’s strategic goals does it best align with?

We develop novel methods for detecting the therapeutic effects of novel interventions
on neurodegeneration and plasticity during both the early presymptomatic and
the later manifest stages of the diseases. Furthermore, integrating pathophysiological studies, OMICS, artificial intelligence and machine learning helps us to derive new knowledge from state-of-the-art experimental models and also to understand what is unique to the human brain.

What are your overarching goals?

We aim to foster interdisciplinary collaborations to increase the dialogue between the development of imaging techniques and their applications to research on neurodegenerative diseases. Further, we also want to develop an educational environment where students and early-career researchers can learn how to approach a scientific question from both a technical and clinical perspective.

What activities do you plan?

We will arrange lectures on neuroimaging in neurodegeneration. Each lecture will encompass two lectures, the first will explain critical methodological aspects of neuroimaging acquisition or processing, while the second will showcase applications of such methodological aspects to clinical questions. Additionally, we hope to host a yearly symposium that will combine the presentation of both methodological and clinical advances with hands-on sessions on neuroimaging analysis for students and early-career researchers.

How many early-career researchers (PhD students, postdocs) are affiliated with this SIG?

Around 15.

How do you think that early-career researchers can contribute to the SIG?

They may present their research during the upcoming seminars and the symposium. There is also a need for helping hands in the organization of the events and with the curation of the section of the newsletter section.

Anything else MultiPark members should know about your SIG?

Stay tuned for the forthcoming MultiPark newsletters as we aim to have regular sessions highlighting the research carried out within the SIG.

Convening person

Nicola Spotorno. Photo.

Nicola Spotorno

Associate researcher

nicola [dot] spotorno [at] med [dot] lu [dot] se (nicola[dot]spotorno[at]med[dot]lu[dot]se)

Link to Nicola Spotorno's profile in the LU Research Portal

Twitter: @NicolaSpotorno