Nanotechnologies for Neurosciences
The activities of the research unit are devoted to the development of new technologies aiming to face problems in the field of neurodegenerative diseases. New microscopes (Brillouin microscope, long working distance / high resolution microscope, IR spectro-microscope), new diagnostic tools (early diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease via retinal imaging, animal based cancer screening), new platforms (bio-printing, organoids, organ-on-chip) for personalized drug test and delivery, and new computational methods (bio-computation and AI boosted imaging) are under development and used to study with a high interdisciplinary approach Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, frontotemporal disorders, Kabuki syndrome and other neurodegenerative and neurodevelopmental pathologies.
Currently we have 3 Joint Labs: the academic JL with the CNR Nanotech aims to develop micro- and nanotechnologies towards the establishment of innovative physiopathological in vitro models: organ-on-a-chip and multi-layered bioprinting of tissue analogues. In particular, the aim is the development of ad hoc organ models for complex diseases, such as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, by integration of patient iPSCs with new materials suitable for bioprinting and microfluidic devices.
The N4N research unit is also the scientific pillar of two industrial Joint Labs. The first JL, in partnership with CrestOptics, is working on the optimisation and industrialisation of a Brillouin Microscope. The second JL is in partnership with D-Tails and aims to develops new diagnostic tools for Alzheimer's disease and breast/prostate cancer.