Presentation of the Column

The vasculature maintains tissue microenvironments that are essential for the function and survival of cells throughout the nervous system. Accordingly, local nervous system blood flow is regulated to maintain tissue oxygenation and meet changing metabolic demands. Blood, in turn, is separated from brain, retinal, spinal cord, and peripheral nerve tissue, as well as from the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) by barriers that allow only some molecules to pass.

Column researchers study the physiology of nervous system vasculature and barriers in both health and disease. The latter includes conditions such as ischemic and hemorrhagic stroke, cerebral small vessel disease, dementia, migraine, neural trauma (e.g., traumatic brain injury, spinal cord injury, and peripheral nerve injury), infections (meningitis, encephalitis), and the emergence of intracranial hypertension and hydrocephalus.

Column researchers uncover genetic, molecular, cellular, and environmental determinants of nervous system vascular and barrier functions, including permeation of solutes and water, defense against infection, and transmigration of inflammatory cells. They develop strategies to penetrate barriers that separate blood from neural tissue and neural tissue from the nasal cavity, respectively, for the purpose of drug delivery. They invent new methods and identify mechanisms and biomarkers of nerve tissue injury as they strive to develop early interventions to salvage brain functions.

Column researchers cooperate across disciplines as they apply concepts and methods from genetics, molecular and cellular biology, electrophysiology, biochemistry and pharmacology, neuroimaging, computational modeling, epidemiology, behavioral neuroscience, and neuropsychology. Their tools include in silico models of vascular functions and molecular transport in nerve tissue, ex vivo cell biology, in vitro barrier models, in vivo animal studies, mechanistic studies in humans, and clinical trials.

Lab rotations enable the student to define a cross-disciplinary PhD project involving at least two of the involved research groups.


Speakers of Column

Leif Østergaard

Professor Leif Østergaard

Aarhus UniversityCFIN, Department of Clinical Medicine

Mail
Hartwig Roman Siebner

Professor Hartwig Roman Siebner

Copenhagen University Hospital Amager & HvidovreDanish Research Centre for Magnetic Resonance

Mail

Members of the column


Aalborg University

Professor Torben Moos

• Medicine and Health Technology • Neurobiology and Drug Delivery

About the Research

Experimental modelling of neurodegeneration with neuroinflammation with focus on the brain’s microvasculature, neurovascular unit, microglia and infiltrating macrophages. In vitro modelling of the blood-brain barrier in pathological conditions.

Two lab members

-

-

Lab rotation

Neurodegeneration with neuroinflammation in inbred rodents or stereotactically induced neurodegeneration. Morphological analyses of glial in neurodegeneration using state-of-art microscopy. Primary cultures of glia and blood-brain barrier.

Secondary Column

Neuroinflammation and Neuron-Glia Interactions

Associate Professor Peter Kristensen

• Department of Chemistry and Bioscience • Medical Biotechnology

About the Research

Molecular engineering of recombinant antibodies for crossing the blood brain barrier and target disease relevant targets. Identification of new targets of relevance for the brain vasculature and validation in cellular models.

Two lab members

-

-

Lab rotation

Development of recombinant antibodies using molecular biology techniques and protein chemistry. Validation in cellular model

Secondary Column

Neurodegenerative Diseases

Associate Professor Boris Modrau

Aalborg University Hospital • Department of Neurology •

About the Research

Research span fundamental research in animal models of stroke and clinical trials in the prehospital phase, acute stroke treatment, prophylactic therapy, and improved neurorehabilitation that includes development and implementation of neurotechnology

Two lab members

Jakob Blicher - Senior researcher

-

Lab rotation

Secondary Column

Brain States and Brain-Body Interactions

Associate Professor Louiza Bohn Thomsen

• Department of Health Science and Technology • Neurobiology Research and Drug Delivery

About the Research

BBB permeability and drug delivery. In vitro, BBB model based on primary cells. In vivo, rodent models incl. a human tumor xenograft mouse model. Gene and protein analysis. IHC, Confocal- and fluorescence microscopy. Fluorescence- and MRI scanner.

Two lab members

-

-

Lab rotation

In vitro BBB model. In vivo, permeability studies on rodents. Subcutaneous or iv injection of large molecules. Fluorescence- and MRI scanning. Brain/brain capillary dissection. Expression analyses, IHC, confocal- and fluorescence microscopy.

Secondary Column

Professor Carsten Reidies Bjarkam

Aalborg University Hospital • Neurosurgery • Neurosurgery

About the Research

Clincal neurosurgery, Experimental neurosurgery with focus on porcine models, neuroanatomy

Two lab members

-

-

Lab rotation

Access to neurosurgical patients, knowledge on pig models of experimental neurosurgery

Secondary Column

Motor and Pain Neuroscience

Professor Søren Paaske Johnsen

• Danish Center for Clinical Health Services Research, Department of Clinical Medicine •

About the Research

DACS is specialized in advanced epidemiological and biostatistical methods. The center has experience with use of registers and clinical databases and a particular competence in developing and properly validating prognostic models for clinical use.

Two lab members

Jan Brink Valentin - Senior researcher

-

Lab rotation

Introduction on how to design and conduct epidemiological studies

Secondary Column

Aarhus University

Assistant Professor Dmitry D Postnov

• Center of Functionally Integrative Neuroscience • Blood Flow Imaging

About the Research

The Blood Flow Imaging group focuses on developing and applying novel imaging technologies for diagnostics and characterization of the microcirculation condition.

Two lab members

Alberto Olmos - PhD student

-

Lab rotation

Participation in imaging experiments (either animal or human), analyzing blood flow imaging data.

Secondary Column

Ageing and Neurodegenerative Diseases

Associate Professor Vladimir Matchkov

• Department of Biomedicine • Neurovascular Signalling Research Group

About the Research

Brain perfusion imaging in awake rodents; Neurovascular coupling in brain slices to assess responses in neurons, astrocytes and blood vessels; Ischemic stroke models; Electrophysiology; Spatial omics of brain

Two lab members

Christian Staehr - PhD student

Line Hansen - PhD student

Lab rotation

To learn how blood supplying neuron matches their activity and metabolic state, which parenchymal cells and signaling are involved. The studies at transcriptional level and in in-vitro and in-vivo functional settings in health and disease.

Secondary Column

Brain Homeostasis and Brain-Body Interactions

Associate Professor Helle Hasager Damkier

• Department of Biomedicine •

About the Research

We aim to understand the molecular and physiological mechanisms behind cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) secretion and pH regulation by the choroid plexus. We us a combination of in vivo and ex vivo methods ranging from mouse to primary culture.

Two lab members

Laura Johnsen - PhD student

-

Lab rotation

Hands on experiece with in vivo CSF extraction and injection in mice. Determination of CSF pH in mice. Primary choroid plexus cell culture. Western blot and IHC. Data analysis. Participation in scientific discussions and fun group activities.

Secondary Column

Associate Professor Brian Hansen

• Center of Functionally Integrative Neuroscience • High Field / Preclinical MRI

About the Research

High field MRI of awake rodents for brain research.

Two lab members

-

-

Lab rotation

Learn MRI methods and data analysis

Secondary Column

Associate Professor Kim Ryun Drasbek

• CFIN, Dept Clinical Medicine • Molecular and Cellular Neuroscience Lab

About the Research

Exploring and exploiting extracellular vesicles (EVs) and miRNAs in stroke diagnostics and treatment. In collaboration with the clinic, we study the diagnostic potential of EVs/miRNAs and test their treatment potential in different cellular models

Two lab members

Katrine Tang Stenz - Postdoc

Birgitte Mumm -

Lab rotation

The Lab rotation will include hands-on experience with different stroke models and methods to evaluate cell health status, extracellular vesicles techniques for the quantification of vesicle number and size, and detection of protein and miRNA content

Secondary Column

Neuroinflammation and Neuron-Glia Interactions

Professor Ebbe Boedtkjer

• Department of Biomedicine •

About the Research

Stroke models; imaging of ion dynamics (pH, Ca2+); microdialysis-based metabolite measurements; electrode-based extracellular pH, CO2 & O2 recordings; resistance artery myography; stereological evaluation of vasculature; expression of mRNA & protein

Two lab members

-

-

Lab rotation

Studies of (a) metabolite accumulation/changes in local environment in experimental animals with disturbed perfusion, (b) signaling influences of metabolites on cerebrovascular function, and (c) consequences for cerebrovascular disease severity.

Secondary Column

Professor Christoffer Laustsen

• Department of clinical medicine • MR research center

About the Research

Development and evaluation of advanced x-nuclei MRI for neuro applicaitons

Two lab members

Nikolaj Bøgh - PhD student

Michael Væggemose - Postdoc

Lab rotation

Hands-on in vivo and in-vitro MRI experiments

Secondary Column

Ageing and Neurodegenerative Diseases

Professor Jeppe Praetorius

• Biomedicine •

About the Research

The research focus is ion transport mechanisms in CSF secretion by the choroid plexus. The methods include live cell ion imaging and ion sensitive electrodes, immunohistochemistry, and drug design targeting CSF secretion.

Two lab members

-

-

Lab rotation

Students will learn live cell Na, K, Cl and pH imaging, immunohistochemistry, and confocal microscopy.

Secondary Column

none

Professor Leif Østergaard

Aarhus University Hospital • Center of Functionally Integrative Neuroscience - Department of Clinical Medicine • Functional Hemodynamics

About the Research

I study neurovascular coupling and capillary (dys)function in dementia and stroke using PET and MRI in humans, optical imaging methods in rodent models, and by biophysical modeling.

Two lab members

Eugenio Gutiérrez-Jiménez - Assistant Professor

Peter Mondrup Rasmussen - Senior researcher

Lab rotation

animal optical imaging experiments, human neuroimaging data analysis

Secondary Column

Neurodevelopment

Professor Morten Nielsen

• Biomedicine •

About the Research

We look at receptor mediated transport at Blood brain barrier, using primary cells and iPSC.

Two lab members

-

-

Lab rotation

Culturing primary BBB cells and imaging

Secondary Column

Neurodegenerative Diseases

University of Copenhagen

Professor Christina Kruuse

Herlev Gentofte Hospital • Dept Neurology • Neurovascular Research Unit

About the Research

Stroke, small vessel disease, vascular/endothelial dysfunction. Neuro-recovery processes and rehabilitation. Bench to bedside collaborative research. MRI, TCD, cardiovascular and cognitive function, register, AI and new technology. Clinical trials.

Two lab members

Joakim Ölmestig - PhD student
Mia Kolmos - PhD student

Lab rotation

Hands-on clinical experience using techniques of cerebrovascular monitoring, imaging, cognitive and motor test in a multidisciplinary clinical environment

Secondary Column

Motor and Pain Neuroscience

Professor Birger Brodin

• Department of Pharmacy • CNS Drug Delivery

About the Research

Drug delivery to the brain is restricted by biological barriers such as the blood-brain barrier, the nose-to-brain barrier and ependymal barriers. We study these barriers at the cellular level and identify pathways and drugs for brain delivery.

Two lab members

Mie Kristensen - Senior researcher

Lasse Saaby - Senior researcher

Lab rotation

Establish in vitro models of the blood brain barriers using brain cells, molecular biology methods,drug transport studies using radioisotopes /lc-ms or other analytical approaches, imaging studies.

Secondary Column

Neurodegenerative Diseases

Associate Professor Mads Barløse

Copenhagen University Hospital Amager and Hvidovre • Danish Research Centre for Magnetic Resonance (DRCMR) • Brain-Body Interaction Group

About the Research

Probing neurovascular coupling in cognitive decline using functional MRI (ASL/BOLD with hypercapnic challenge). Measuring GI-reflexes following ingestion using phase-contrast MRI. Relating findings to clinical characterization.

Two lab members

-

-

Lab rotation

Hans-on work in a clinical research setting involving brain and vessel MRI.

Secondary Column

Brain States and Brain-Body Interactions

Associate Professor Sajedeh Eftekhari

Rigshospitalet-Glostrup • Danish Headache center, Dept of Neurology, Glostrup research institute • Idiopathic intracranial hypertension (IIH)

About the Research

In vivo studies with telemetry system to measure intracranial pressure (ICP) with the aim to understand ICP regulation and elevated ICP in animal model for Idiopathic Intracranial Hypertension (IIH).Focus on disease mechanism and IIH-related headache

Two lab members

Connar Stanley James Westgate - Postdoc

Ida Marchen Egerod Israelsen - PhD student

Lab rotation

Students will learn how ICP measurements are performed in rats and understanding in how to analyze ICP data. Further, behavioral studies, in vitro studies include molecular work such as cell cultures of CP, Western Blot, qPCR, immunohistochemistry

Secondary Column

Motor and Pain Neuroscience

Professor messoud ashina

Rigshospitalet Glostrup • Danish Headache Center • Human Migraine Research Unit

About the Research

Key techniques: Human provocation models; structural, functional, and metabolic magnetic resonance imaging; blood-based biomarker investigations; quantitative sensory testing

Two lab members

Faisal Amin - Assistant Professor

Rune Haeckert Christensen - PhD student

Lab rotation

Lab rotation learning objectives: To advance our understanding of basic mechanisms underlying migraine and other headache disorders and to identify novel drug targets.

Secondary Column

Motor and Pain Neuroscience

Professor Anne Katrine Pagsberg

Capital Region, Mental Health Services • Child and adolescent mental health center • Research Unit

About the Research

Clinical studies in child- and adolescent mental disorders, psychosis and OCD. Involved in translational studies investigating the neurobiological/neurocognitive/neuroendocrine underpinnings of disease and treatment response

Two lab members

-

-

Lab rotation

clinical characterization/phenotypes; treatment response; neurocognitive testing

Secondary Column

Neurodevelopment

Professor Olaf Bjarne Paulson

• Clinical Medicine • Meurobiology Research Unit, Rigshospitalet

About the Research

My research deals with cerebral blood flow, the function of the brain and brain imaging, primary MR, but also SPECT and PET. Physiology and degrative diseases. Regulatory mechanisms include neurotransmitter and also the renin-angiotensin system.

Two lab members

-

-

Lab rotation

Introduction to methods. Data analysis.

Secondary Column

Neurodegenerative Diseases

Professor Lars Edvinsson

Copenhagen University Hospital • Research Park Glostrup • Clinical Experimental Research Group

About the Research

The stroke project relates to finding a way to stop the upregulation of contractile receptors, vascular inflammatin and blood-brain barrier opening. When this is done early it prevents the development of the ischemic brain injury projects of highest

Two lab members

Kristian Haanes - Assistant Professor

Anja Holm - Assistant Professor

Lab rotation

Participation in developing novel stroke therapy

Secondary Column

Motor and Pain Neuroscience

Professor Petrine Wellendorph

• Drug Design and Pharmacology • Wellendorph lab

About the Research

The research focuses on molecular pharmacological characterization of brain targets in neuroprotection and -repair. Of main interest is the therapeutical potential of targets for GABA, its metabolite GHB, and the calmodulin-responsive kinase CaMKII.

Two lab members

Stine Juul Gauger - PhD student

-

Lab rotation

The student will work with biochemical and pharmacological analyses of ischemia-related molecular mechanisms in cells, tissues and whole organisms, including the use of genetically modified mice and an in vivo mouse model of photothrombotic stroke.

Secondary Column

Brain States and Brain-Body Interactions

Professor Hanne Christensen

Bispebjerg Hospital • Neurology • Stroke and Cerebrovascular diseases

About the Research

Clinical stroke research (including large clinical trials, cognitive interventions, stroke epidemiology). Areas of specific interest include intracerebral hemorrhage, oral anticoagulant related intracerebral hemorrhage, sex-differences.

Two lab members

Louisa Christensen - Postdoc

Christian Ovesen - Postdoc

Lab rotation

Basic methodology of clinical research including Good Clinical Practice (ICH-GCP), testing of study participants, and basics of trial statistics. Kindness and compassion are the basic values in our approach to supervision and mentoring.

Secondary Column

none

Professor Nanna MacAulay

• Department of Neuroscience • MacAulay lab

About the Research

In vivo/in vitro determination of cerebrospinal fluid secretion

Two lab members

Trine Toft - Assistant Professor

-

Lab rotation

Participate in in vitro/in vivo experimentation on anesthetized rats

Secondary Column

Brain States and Brain-Body Interactions

Professor Hartwig Roman Siebner

Copenhagen University Hospital Amager and Hvidovre • Danish Research Centre for Magnetic Resonance (DRCMR) • Brain Network Modulation

About the Research

Mapping and shaping causal dynamics of human brain networks in health & disease (Parkinson´s disease, multiple sclerosis, stroke, psychiatric disorders) combining psychophysics, functional and structural MRI, EEG, and transcranial brain stimulation.

Two lab members

Lasse Christiansen - Senior researcher

Leo Tomasevic - Senior researcher

Lab rotation

Hands-on experiment involving multimodal brain MRI & precision brain stimulation in healthy volunteers and patients with neurological or psychiatric disorders, interaction with a diverse (multidisciplinary, multi-national) research environment

Secondary Column

Motor and Pain Neuroscience

Professor Martin Lauritzen

• Neuroscience • Translational Neurobiology

About the Research

Extensive knowledge of brain microcirculation and the BBB, particularly how cell components and small molecules regulate and modulate the BBB, as well as the role of antibodies to promote BBB crossing by transcytosis.

Two lab members

-

-

Lab rotation

In vivo, 2-photon microscopy, disease models.

Secondary Column

Neurodegenerative Diseases

University of Southern Denmark

Associate Professor Mengliang Zhang

• Institute of Molecular Medicine •

About the Research

My research interests are to unravel the mechanisms underlying motor deficits and cardiovascular disfunctions after traumatic spinal cord injury and brain injury using multiple behavioral, cellular, and molecular neurobiology techniques.

Two lab members

Hiroyuki Watanabe - Assistant Professor

Karen Rich - Lab technician

Lab rotation

As a PhD candidate during the 10-weeks’ rotation period you can learn how to make traumatic spinal cord injury and/or traumatic spinal cord injury model and how to evaluate motor deficits induced by these injuries.

Secondary Column

Motor and Pain Neuroscience