January 24, 2011

BSi grants $5 mill to JH groups to study cognitive disorders

The Johns Hopkins Brain Science Institute has funded a total of $5 million to 12 different research groups at Johns Hopkins to launch the new Synapses, Circuits and Cognitive Disorders Program. The new BSi initiative aims to understand the fundamentals of brain function by focusing on the synapse—the point of contact between two nerve cells—to better understand cognitive disorders.

“Major advances have been made in our understanding of synaptic transmission and plasticity, and recent studies have indicated that the disruption of synaptic function underlies many cognitive disorders, including Alzheimer’s disease, schizophrenia and autism,” said Jack Griffin, director of the Brain Science Institute. “At Hopkins we plan to push this research beyond its current limits to aggressively get at the heart of these debilitating and devastating illnesses.”

A list of the projects receiving grants is online at www.brainscienceinstitute.org/index.php/research/research_areas/synapses_circuits_and_cognitive_disorders-1.