Group leader: Olivier Baud
Group name: Pathogenesis of perinatal brain damage and neuroprotection of the developing brain
Affiliation: University Hospital
Most of research programs developed in our group are focused on perinatal brain injury and aim to prevent brain injury associated with premature birth or intra-uterine growth retardation. We are currently developing basic research programs including : 1- Perinatal microvasculature development in vivo and changes of gene expression controlling angiogenesis in animal models replicating perinatal brain injury. Our main hypothesis is that impaired myelination following fetal growth restriction could be related to inadequate blood supply to oligodendroglial progenitor cells (OPC) during a critical period of high metabolic requirements. 2- Vasoreactivity and intrinsic brain connectivity of the developing brain in response to the genetic modulation of oxytocin CNS secretion from ParaVentricular Nucleus and remote modulation of microglial activation within the developing white matter. In this project, the causality of the modulation of microglial activation by central oxytocin production and its potential neuroprotection properties will be demonstrated either (i) by modulating oxytocinergic neurons activity by using Designer Receptors Exclusively Activated by Designer Drugs (DREADD)-based chemogenetic tools or (ii) in microglia invalidated for OXT-Receptor. ICONEUS will assess the effect of the modulation of neuro-microglial crosstalk on vascular reac-tivity and cortical connectivity in living rats during brain development. This specific project will be conducted in collaboration with Prof. Jozsef Kiss. 3- Effect of sensorimotor interventions in the neonatal rat on regional blood volume changes and in vivo cortical connectivity using a new functional brain imaging modality (Ultrafast Doppler).