Projects

Currently active funded projects

 

Title: SIMBA - SINDROME METABOLICA, BLOCKCHAIN, AGRIFOOD      

PI:  Prof. Bertolino, Dr. Rampino

Funding scheme/agency: Ministry of Economic Development

Amount: EUR 700,000

Aims: SiMBA (Blockchain Agrifood Metabolic Syndrome) aims to enhance the synergy between basic clinical research, food industry and IT companies. We will contribute to creating a product of central importance in the Mediterranean diet, namely a flour, with nutraceutical properties. The purpose of this flour will be to reduce symptoms of Metabolic Syndrome, which is more common in patients undergoing antipsychotic treatment. We will have the opportunity to investigate the impact of genetic factors in the benefit gained by using this product. 

 

 

Title:   IDENTIFICATION OF MULTI-MODAL MARKERS OF GLOBAL LEVEL OF FUNCTIONING IMPAIRMENTS IN INDIVIDUALS WITH A CLINICAL HIGH RISK FOR PSYCHOSIS

PI:  Prof. Bertolino, Prof. Cassibba

Funding scheme/agency: PON Research and Innovation

Amount:  180,000

Aims: This project aims to generate machine learning algorithms fusing genetic, neuropsychological, environmental and neurobiological data to predict social and occupational functioning, as well as the transition into full-blown disease, in individuals at clinical high risk for psychosis. We hope that the generation and validation of these algorithms will provide novel and important information about the pathophysiology of schizophrenia and psychotic spectrum disorders, and that it will support a better planning of early identification and intervention programs for at-risk individuals.

 

 

Title: FACTORS INFLUENCING REAL-LIFE FUNCTIONING OF PEOPLE WITH A DIAGNOSIS OF SCHIZOPHRENIA: A FOUR-YEAR FOLLOW-UP MULTICENTER STUDY

PI: Prof. Bertolino (Local PI)

Funding scheme/agency: PRIN 2017

Amount: EUR 110,000

Aims: This project stems from the Italian Network for Research on Psychosis, which gathers multiple University hospitals across Italy. The aim is to identify clinical, neuropsychological, neuroimaging, and genetic predictors of real-life functioning - a dimension of well-being often neglected in schizophrenia research.

 

 

Title:  DOPAMINE - DYSBINDIN GENETIC INTERACTION: A MULTIDISCIPLINARY APPROACH TO CHARACTERIZE COGNITIVE PHENOTYPES OF SCHIZOPHRENIA AND DEVELOP PERSONALIZED TREATMENTS

PI: Dr. Pergola (Local PI)                                                     

Funding scheme/agency: PRIN 2017

Amount: EUR 80,000

Aims: Dysbindin and dopamine D2R and D3R are implicated in the regulation of dopamine signaling that plays a key role in the pathophysiology/treatment of schizophrenia. This project will assess functional interactions among dysbindin, D2R and D3R through a multidisciplinary approach combining preclinical studies and neuroimaging/genetic studies in healthy volunteers and in patients with schizophrenia.

 

 

Title: TEMPORAL COHERENCE OF SCHIZOPHRENIA RISK GENES IN A CRITICAL BRAIN CIRCUIT: IT'S ABOUT TIME

PI: Dr. Pergola (Local PI)                                                    

Funding scheme/agency: NIH R21

Amount: USD 275,000

Aims: The goal of this study, funded to our collaborator Prof. Weinberger at the Lieber Institute for Brain Development (Johns Hopkins Medical Campus, Baltimore, MD) is to identify challenges and pitfalls of single cell population enriched RNA sequencing involved in the regulation of developmental trajectories of gene co-expression. We will study a hippocampo-prefrontal circuit to develop an algorithm library and laboratory protocols for data acquisition.

 

 

Title: FLOURISH - IDENTIFICATION OF BRAIN DEVELOPMENTAL GENE CO-EXPRESSION NETWORKS TO UNDERSTAND RISK FOR SCHIZOPHRENIA

PI: Dr. Pergola                                                                                                  

Funding scheme/agency: Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions (Individual Fellowships)

Amount: EUR 262,000

Aims: This project aims to identify biologically plausible pathways of convergence of genetic risk for schizophrenia along neural development in critical brain regions involved in schizophrenia risk. FLOURISH will study how gene co-expression unfolds along the lifespan in the prefrontal cortex, hippocampus and striatum. Gene co-expression networks will then be associated with genetic variants to identify markers of pathway co-regulation. Genetic markers of pathways co-regulation will be combined into polygenic scores that will be tested as predictors of the structure and activity of the target brain regions assessed by magnetic resonance imaging. The action consists of a visiting period which Dr. Giulio Pergola will spend at the Lieber Institute for Brain Development (LIBD) at Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, USA, and a return period at the University of Bari Aldo Moro (UNIBA).

 

Title: DIEF - EARLY IDENTIFICATION OF PSYCHIATRIC RISK: A LONGITUDINAL STUDY ON ENDOPHENOTYPES INVOLVED IN PSYCHOSIS AND BIPOLAR DISORDER RISK

PI: Prof. Bertolino                                                            

Funding scheme/agency: Apulia Region 

Amount: EUR 1,200,000

Aims: This project aims to foster research on early identification and treatment of individuals at clinical risk for psychosis. The partnership includes local healthcare authorities across the entire Apulian territory. The longitudinal design will allow investigating the onset of psychosis and the efficacy of psychotherapy in reducing distress in at-risk individuals.

Pubblicato il: 30/06/2020  Ultima modifica: 20/11/2020