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Neuroimaging and biostatistics laboratory

 BIND lab:

The laboratory of Brain Imaging, Networks, and Data mining,directed by Doctor Giulio Pergola, gathers researchers with diverse expertise in the field of imaging genetics, including biologists, biotechnologists, residents in Psychiatry, and psychologists. This ensemble of backgrounds reflects the high interdisciplinarity of the field of imaging genetics, with some researchers specialized in neuroimaging, and others working on computational genetics and biostatistics. We welcome students from all fields of neuroscience who are passionate about the inner workings of the human brain.

Currently funded projects:

Innonetworks - Innonetworks is funded by the Region of Apulia and is a mixed private/public consortium including among other partners the University of Bari Aldo Moro along with the SME "MASMEC" which is specialized on high technology innovations. The project aims to develop smart systems to improve the acquisition and analysis of fMRI data. UNIBA partners include the Group of Psychiatric Neuroscience and the Applied Physics group led by Prof. Bellotti.


PRONIA - PRONIA is a consortium project funded by the EU and headed by Ludwig-Maximilian University Munich (PI Prof Nikolaos Koutsouleris). PRONIA aims to develop multimodal classifiers including neuroimaging, cognitive, clinical, and genetic information to understand schizophrenia and afford early detection of risk.


FLOURISH - This project, funded by Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions (Individual Fellowships) 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).

Facilities:

Magnetic Resonance Imaging: the Psychiatric Neuroscience Group has been collaborating with the Neuroradiology Department in the Ospedale Casa Sollievo della Sofferenza (San Giovanni Rotondo, Italy) for over 15 years, collecting functional and structural scans from over 1000 subjects. The hospital has acquired a new Philips 3T scanner in 2016, which also enables the collection of high-resolution diffusion tensor imaging and arterial spin labeling data, besides multiecho functional sequences.


Magnetoencephalography: UNIBA hosts one of the two laboratories of magnetoencephalography in southern Italy, with the most advanced system available in Europe (Elekta TRIUX). The laboratory has been installed in October 2016 and is currently used by the Institutes of Neurology and Psychiatry to study multiple sclerosis, schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and normal developmental cognitive trajectories.


Computational tools: the laboratory of data mining uses several workstations and a local server for most of the biostatics work. High performance parallel computing facilities are available via the Bari PRISMA cloud Open Source software platform. This is one of the largest computational data centers in Italy, with about 12,000 CPU/Core and 6.6 Petabyte of storage.

Main collaborators:

Emmanuel Barbeau, PhD. Centre de Recherche Cerveau & Cognition Tolosa. http://cerco.ups-tlse.fr/?lang=it
Roberto Bellotti, PhD. Istituto nazionale di fisica nucleare. http://home.infn.it/en/
Nikolaos Koutsouleris, MD, PhD. Università Ludwig-Maximilian di Monaco di Baviera. https://www.en.uni-muenchen.de/index.html
Teresa Popolizio, MD. Ospedale Casa Sollievo della Sofferenza, San Giovanni Rotondo (Italia). https://www.operapadrepio.it/it/
Fabio Sambataro, MD, PhD. Università degli studi di Udine. https://www.uniud.it/
Emanuel Schwarz, PhD. Istituto Centrale di Salute Mentale di Mannheim. https://www.zi-mannheim.de/en/institut.html
Pierluigi Selvaggi, MD. King's College London. https://www.kcl.ac.uk/index.aspx
Boris Suchan, PhD. Università della Ruhr Bochum. https://www.ruhr-uni-bochum.de/index_en.htm
Daniel R. Weinberger, MD. Lieber Institute for Brain Development, Baltimora, MD (USA). https://www.libd.org/

 

Group members:

Giulio Pergola, PhD

Linda Antonucci, PhD. Postdoctoral fellow. fMRI connectivity in healthy, at risk, and psychiatric populations. Currently visiting the Ludwig-Maximilians University Munich (Germany).
Pasquale Di Carlo, MD. Resident in Psychiatry and PhD Student in Neuroscience. Biostatistics, transcriptomics and epigenetics of schizophrenia. Currently visiting the Lieber Institute for Brain Development at Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore (MD, USA).
Piergiuseppe Di Palo, MD. Resident in Psychiatry. Clinical genetics.
Leonardo Fazio, PhD. Postdoctoral fellow. Neural correlates of working memory.
Marco Papalino, MD. Resident in Psychiatry. Clinical and translational genetics.
Roberta Passiatore. MS Student in Clinical Psychology. Neural correlates of attention and episodic memory.
Tiziana Quarto. PhD Candidate in Neuroscience. fMRI and MEG correlates of cognitive and emotional phenotypes.

Monica Nicoli, Phd

We welcome expressions of interest from prospective research assistants, PhD students, and Postdocs.  


AWARDS


Dr. Linda Antonucci, former postdoc at the Department of Basic Medical  Sciences, Neuroscience and Sense Organs of the University of Bari Aldo Moro and currently postdoc at the Ludwig Maximilians Universität in Munich in the framework of PRONIA (a European consortium including the research group of Prof. Alessandro Bertolino), has been awarded the "Rising Star Showcase Presentation" by the Society of Biological Psychiatry. Dr. Antonucci, together with five other young scientists, has been selected among all young participants in the meeting from all over the world to present her work: "Classification of Schizophrenia Using Machine Learning with Multimodal Markers" in a special symposium within the Society of Biological Psychiatry Conference (May 16th 
through 18th 2019 in Chicago, Illinois). She employs machine learning to combine genetic, environmental, and neuropsychological data to improve schizophrenia diagnosis. We would like to express our greatest appreciation about this prestigious international award and wish Linda the long and bright scientific career she deserves.

Dr. Pasquale Di Carlo, Psychiatrist and Ph.D. student in Neuroscience in the group of Prof. Alessandro Bertolino, has recently won a Travel Award to attend the 2019 Congress of the Schizophrenia International  
Research Society in Orlando, Florida (USA). The prestigious award consists of waived registration fee and a travel allowance. He will present a poster on his work entitled “Gene Co-Expression Networks 
Reveal Pathways of Convergence of Schizophrenia Risk Genes and of Response to Treatment”. In this work, Dr. Di Carlo and coworkers show that individual genetic background associated with gene expression 
regulation in the brain predicts symptoms amelioration in patients, suggesting a novel path to precision medicine in psychiatry. Dr. Di Carlo is currently visiting the Lieber Institute for Brain Development to investigate the biological basis of schizophrenia with a team of world-renown scientists. We are delighted that our Pasquale received this well-deserved award and wish him the best for his scientific endeavor!
Pubblicato il: 05/04/2018  Ultima modifica: 06/03/2019


Direttore Psichiatria Universitaria:

Professor Alessandro BERTOLINO


Policlinico di Bari
Piazza Giulio Cesare, 11, 70124 Bari


Servizio di Vigilanza:

Tel. +39 0805593244

Segreteria Ospedaliera:   

Signora Elena DOCCINI

Signora Antonia COTUGNO

E-mail:

Tel. +39 0805592160 

Segreteria Studenti:

Signor Vincenzo PERAGINE   

E-mail:

Signor Giuseppe MATTIACE    

E-mail

Segreteria Universitaria:

Signora Riccarda LOMUSCIO     

E -mail

Tel. +39 080 5478572