Medical Student Research Fellowship for Summer 2011
Mentor: Carol Tamminga
Room number: NE5.110
Mail Code: 9127
Phone number: 62789
Project title: Activity-dependent transmission markers in the anterior cingulate cortex in cases with schizophrenia
Human subjects IRB approved project number (where applicable): 0903-549
Animal subjects IRB approved project number (where applicable): Not applicable.
Project Type (patient-based research, animal-based research, or basic research; this characterization is only to permit a general classification for grouping similar types of projects)
This is translational research based on human postmortem tissue in the laboratory. I would have to call it patient-based research.
Brief Description of Project:
Glutamate-mediated/activity-dependent synaptic transmission is thought to be altered in schizophrenia. We have seen evidence of this in hippocampus. The anterior cingulate cortex is a part of the limbic system and related to hippocampus, therefore is suspect as a site where glutamate signaling might be altered in individuals with schizophrenia.
In the course of our clinical schizophrenia research, we have begun to collect MR spectroscopy data on individuals with schizophrenia in the anterior cingulate in vivo, including levels of glutamate, glutamine, glycine and GABA. Because of limiting resolution of MRS, these data can only be collected in voxels that include considerable tissue. Therefore, in order to confirm and extend these MRS data, we take anterior cingulate cortex from postmortem brain tissue and analyze these and additional markers of glutamate activity in the tissue. Mr Hu will work with an already collected cohort of schizophrenia cases, where we have isolated the anterior cingulate cortex. We will dissect that region of cortex into a superior, a middle and a lower grey matter layer and analyze our glutamate markers separately in these grey matter layers. We expect that the in vivo MRS data from live patients with schizophrenia and the postmortem protein levels of glutamate markers in postmortem brain will complement themselves closely.
Previous Research Activities or Publications with Medic