Predavanje “Preclinical brain imaging in translational drug discovery”

 Senior Lecturer & BRAIN Centre Director

Institute of Psychology, Psychiatry and Neuroscience (IOPPN) King’s College London

Pozivamo vas na predavanje “Preclinical brain imaging in translational drug discovery” koje će održati dr. sc. Diana Cash, direktorica i viša predavačica pri The Brain Centre, Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience,  Kings’ College London.

Predavanje će se održati u srijedu 17. 05. 2023. sa početkom u 13.30h u seminarskoj dvorani u prizemlju Hrvatskog instituta za istraživanje mozga (HIIM).

Podsjećamo da se do HIIM-a može doći kroz ulaze na Voćarskoj i Mesićevoj ulici.

U nastavku je sažetak predavanja i kratki životopis dr. Cash.


In this lecture, I will introduce the range of activities conducted at the Brain Centre and showcase examples of our work in experimental neuroscience. One of our primary objectives is to employ brain imaging techniques to investigate the mechanisms of action and treatment efficacy of therapeutic compounds.

To this end I will present a model of inflammatory demyelination in mice and demonstrate how multimodal in vivo MR imaging and spectroscopy can provide an intricate characterisation of pathology. Our analysis shows that changes in brain metabolites, such as GABA, glutamate, and taurine, are correlated with histological signs, while whole-brain morphometry can reveal unexpected findings about the extent of remyelination. I will also show how this approach can confirm treatment efficacy, and discuss the mechanisms of action as well as clinical relevance.

We will then shift to the in vivo characterisation of the therapeutic effects of fasudil, a putative treatment for Alzheimer’s disease. Using a transgenic rat model, we have developed a sensitive method to detect amyloid plaques that enables us to measure changes over time and thus quantify the drug’s efficacy in the living animals. Additionally, we correlate and compare MR, histology, and behaviour measures to test the hypothesis of fasudil’s ability to ameliorate multiple signs of AD.

Finally, I will present a novel pipeline for characterising the functional effects of CNS active compounds on the brain. This methodology involves measuring whole brain regional blood flow and resting-state functional connectivity, creating a unique complex fingerprint for each compound, with which novel drugs can then be compared. The plans to combine these techniques with EEG recordings will additionally be discussed.

Curriculum vitae

Diana Cash (BSc Mol Biology – Birkbeck, MSc Neuroscience – KCL, PhD Neuroimaging – KCL) is a Senior Lecturer, and Scientific Director of the Preclinical Neuroimaging Facility (The Brain Centre) at the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience (IOPPN), KCL.

Diana is an expert researcher who has dedicated over two decades of her career to King’s College London (KCL). Throughout, she has spearheaded a variety of brain imaging projects that leverage state-of-the-art MR imaging and spectroscopy, PET, as well as in vivo and in vitro methods (including behaviour, EEG, histology, and autoradiography) in experimental models of neuro-psychiatric disorders. Diana championed the establishment of The BRAIN Centre in 2017, which serves as a world-class facility specialising in collaborative neuroimaging research with academia and industry. Diana and her colleagues at the Neuroimaging department are committed to exploring forward and back-translational research aimed at elucidating the mechanisms and treatments for a range of disorders and pathologies, such as dementia, schizophrenia, unhealthy ageing, autism, Parkinson’s, stroke, and more.