Sofi da Cunha-Bang is the Younger Researcher of 2016

A huge congratulation to NRU PhD student Sofi da Cunha-Bang who has Friday May 19th been honoured as the Younger Researcher of the Year (Årets Yngre Forsker 2016) at this year's poster and presentation competition arranged by the Collaboration of Young Researchers at Rigshospitalet (FYF). Sofi won the title based on her presentation on "High serotonin 1B receptor binding is associated with high trait anger and heightened amygdala and striatal reactiviy to provacations".


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Two NRU grants from Augustinus Foundation

Congratulations to professor Jens D. Mikkelsen and senior researcher Vibe G. Frøkjær who have today received two separate grants totalling DKK 900.000 from the Augustinus Foundation.

Jens has received DKK 500.000 for a project entitled 'Neuromolekylære og kognitive effekter af en human-specifik alpha7 nicotinerg acetylcholin receptor variant' which is aiming at characterizing the expression, regulation and function of the CHRFAM7A gene in the human brain, and which will be run by senior researcher Henrik B. Hansen.

Vibe has received DKK 400.000 for the project 'Affective and Social Processing in Healthy Controls and Patients with Major Depressive Disorder; Implications for Predicting Response to Antidepressant Drug Therapy'. This neuropsychological project has a threefold aim, namely (1) to establish a healthy Danish reference group for the EMOTICOM test battery, (2) to determine the predictive value of EMOTICOM test outcomes in response to a pharmacological intervention in MDD patients and to determine if treatment induced changes in EMOTICOM test outcomes differentiates responders from non-responders, and (3) to identify a set of EMOTICOM test outcomes that best serves as diagnostic tools for differentiating MDD patients from a healthy Danish reference group. The project is tightly linked to the NeuroPharm Work Package 1 project 'Treatment outcome in Major Depressive Disorder'.

NRU receives two NRM 2016 Young Investigator Awards

Congratulations to Hanne and Sofi for having their abstracts being judged to be among the best submitted for the NRM 2016 in Boston and therefore resulting in oral presentations and Young Investigator Awards.

Postdoc grant to NRU from the Lundbeck Foundation

Sebastian Holst who is today postdoctoral scientist at University of Zurich, Switzerland, has recently been awarded a postdoctoral grant of 700.000 DKK from the Lundbeck Foundation for a new 3-year project entitled "Sleep loss, adrenergic inhibition, cognitive performance and cerebral water diffusion in humans" which is to be carried out from January 1st, 2017, in a close collaboration between NRU and Maiken Nedergaard's group at Center of Basic and Translational Neuroscience, University of Copenhagen.

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Brain on fire



Cover page of this year's first issue of Ugeskrift for Læger published Jan 11th, 2016. The beautiful image of a "Brain on fire" is made by PhD student Per Jensen from NRU, and it shows a 3D representation of the brain of a patient with anti-NMDA receptor encephalitis imaged with the SPECT tracer [123I]CLINDE. The image supports the recent paper Blaabjerg M, Mærsk-Møller CC, Kondziella D, Somnier F, Celicanin M, Andersen H, Bach FW, Pinborg LH. Workup and treatment of autoimmune encephalitis. Ugeskr Laeger. 2015 Nov 2;177(45) which was co-authored by NRU senior researcher Lars Pinborg.

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Evidence of a Christmas spirit network in the brain

In a recent functional MRI study, Danish researchers, including NRU-affiliated Ulrich Lindberg, have found out where exactly in the human brain the Christmas spirit resides.

In the study, 10 individuals who celebrated Christmas and 10 who did no, were asked to fill out questionnaires on their feelings toward Christmas and then completed an MRI in which they were asked to look at different images, including Christmas-related imagery. Thereby the group of researchers were able to locate the source of the feelings of Christmas joy or disgust to a number of regions in the brain that may explain reactions to this festive time of year.

The small study has been published in the British Medical Journal's annual Christmas issue, where researchers use tongue-in-cheek scientific methods as a way to bring some humor into the scientific field. Link to the paper here.

A new study has localized the brain areas involved with "the Christmas spirit". The Christmas spirit has been a widespread phenomenon for centuries and is commonly described as feelings of joy and nostalgia mixed with associations to merry feelings, gifts, delightful smells, and good food. When it comes to Christmas spirit, we either embrace it - or give it a big "bah humbug". This holiday season, researchers are using an MRI to find out where exactly the Christmas spirit resides. Danish researchers have identified the parts the brain which light up when subjects see images associated with Christmas, as part of a project to help the millions who suffer "a Christmas spirit deficiency - or the "bah humbug" syndrome". We refer to this as the "bah humbug" syndrome. Sacred Heart http://sacredheartspectrum.com/2015/12/bah-humbug-syndrome-located-in-brain/
A new study has localized the brain areas involved with "the Christmas spirit". The Christmas spirit has been a widespread phenomenon for centuries and is commonly described as feelings of joy and nostalgia mixed with associations to merry feelings, gifts, delightful smells, and good food. When it comes to Christmas spirit, we either embrace it - or give it a big "bah humbug". This holiday season, researchers are using an MRI to find out where exactly the Christmas spirit resides. Danish researchers have identified the parts the brain which light up when subjects see images associated with Christmas, as part of a project to help the millions who suffer "a Christmas spirit deficiency - or the "bah humbug" syndrome". We refer to this as the "bah humbug" syndrome. Sacred Heart http://sacredheartspectrum.com/2015/12/bah-humbug-syndrome-located-in-brain/
A new study has localized the brain areas involved with "the Christmas spirit". The Christmas spirit has been a widespread phenomenon for centuries and is commonly described as feelings of joy and nostalgia mixed with associations to merry feelings, gifts, delightful smells, and good food. When it comes to Christmas spirit, we either embrace it - or give it a big "bah humbug". This holiday season, researchers are using an MRI to find out where exactly the Christmas spirit resides. Danish researchers have identified the parts the brain which light up when subjects see images associated with Christmas, as part of a project to help the millions who suffer "a Christmas spirit deficiency - or the "bah humbug" syndrome". We refer to this as the "bah humbug" syndrome. What the Danish researchers found is that whether we're the impersonation of the Grinch, the in-betweens or we get all hyped about Christmas, doctors can see it. With the help of functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), the Danish researchers took a look at brain activity related to the Christmas spirit and found some pretty interesting facts. 'Accurate localisation of the Christmas spirit is a paramount first step in being able to help this group of patients, ' they say. Sacred Heart http://sacredheartspectrum.com/2015/12/bah-humbug-syndrome-located-in-brain/
A new study has localized the brain areas involved with "the Christmas spirit". The Christmas spirit has been a widespread phenomenon for centuries and is commonly described as feelings of joy and nostalgia mixed with associations to merry feelings, gifts, delightful smells, and good food. When it comes to Christmas spirit, we either embrace it - or give it a big "bah humbug". This holiday season, researchers are using an MRI to find out where exactly the Christmas spirit resides. Danish researchers have identified the parts the brain which light up when subjects see images associated with Christmas, as part of a project to help the millions who suffer "a Christmas spirit deficiency - or the "bah humbug" syndrome". We refer to this as the "bah humbug" syndrome. Sacred Heart http://sacredheartspectrum.com/2015/12/bah-humbug-syndrome-located-in-brain/

Support from the Migraine Research Foundation

The Migraine Research Foundation has decided to generously support the migraine project with 50.000 USD.

The migraine project is an ongoing PhD project run by Marie Deen Christensen in a joint effort between Neurobiology Research Unit and the Danish Headache Center at Rigshospitalet, Glostrup, as part of the third work package (WP3) in NeuroPharm. In the project brain levels of serotonin are investigated in episodic and chronic migraine patients by [11C]SB207145-PET imaging, with the aim to show a possible association between the level of serotonin in the brain and the severity of migraine.

Recent media appearance by NRU staff

Staff from the Neurobiology Research Unit (NRU) often appear in the media to present the cutting-edge science being conducted at NRU.

In a recent DR3 program called "Kærestesorgens DNA" PhD student Dea S. Stenbæk and psychology student Nanna Hansen performed neuropsychological assessments of three people who have donated their heartbreaks to science to find out what happens to us, from the brain to the heart, when we have lovesickness. The program can be seen here (start at 10:34 min.)

Also recently, medical research year student Annette Johansen and project nurse Lone Freyr participated in "Videnskabsmagasinet" on DR3 in a program about drugs. This program is freely available here (start at 3:39 min.).