The Integrated Research Centers focus on specific conditions, and they integrate different but complementary clinical and preclinical research expertise.
|C1 – Headache Science Center (HSC)||Preclinical and clinical research in the field of headache and neuropathic pain|
|C2 – Clinical Trial Center||Provision of support to Foundation clinicians involved in conducting clinical trials (profit and nonprofit)|
|C3 – Brain Connectivity Center (BCC)||Study of normal and pathological brain function through the integration of basic and applied research and the development of innovative technologies|
|C4 – Brain MRI 3T Mondino Research Center||Clinical and basic research performed using advanced neuroimaging technologies|
|C5 – Center of Child Neuro-Ophthalmology||Clinical research in the field of neuro-ophthalmological disorders in children|
|C6 – Stroke Center and Emergency Neurology Trust (SCENT)(under revision)||Clinical research in the field of stroke and emergency neurology|
|C7 – Center for Research in Neurodegenerative Diseases (CRND)||Preclinical and clinical research in the field of neurodegenerative diseases|
|C8 – Epilepsy Diagnosis and Treatment Center||Clinical research in the field of adult epilepsy; participation in drug trials|
|C9 – Interdepartmental Multiple Sclerosis Research Center (CRISM)||Preclinical and clinical research in the field of multiple sclerosis; participation in drug trials|
|C10 – Regional Reference Center for Pediatric Neuromuscular Diseases||Preclinical and clinical research in the field of pediatric neuromuscular diseases|
|C11 – Sleep Medicine Center||Clinical research in the field of primary sleep disorders|
|C12 – Genomics and Post-Genomics
Center (GpG Center)
|Research and molecular diagnostics, focusing on the genetic, molecular and cellular processes underlying neurological diseases|
|C13 – Biodata Science Center||Research methodology, statistical and epidemiological analyses|
Head: Prof. Cristina Tassorelli
Research in the field of headache and neurological pain has, “historically”, always been a particular strength of the Mondino Foundation, working in collaboration with the University of Pavia.
The HSC’s research focuses on a series of topics and areas, namely: the role of age and gender in primary headache, the development of innovative diagnostic and management approaches for headache and chronic central pain, the exploration of physiopathogenetic mechanisms, through the evaluation of potential peripheral biomarkers (specific microRNAs, neuropetides and endocannabinoids), the identification of potential new therapeutic targets through the use of experimental pain models, the study and optimal management of drug dependence, pharmacogenetic aspects of pain.
Head: Prof. Emilio Perucca
The Clinical Trial Center’s role is to support clinical trial activity, assisting clinicians involved in the conducting of trials and reviewing documentation to be submitted to the Ethics Committee. As part of this work, the Center is responsible for managing the Clinical Database, a constantly updated record of ongoing/planned trials that contains details of their type and the number/type of patients enrolled or needing to be enrolled.
The center also works in synergy with the EpiCARE European Reference Network for rare and complex epilepsies, to which the Mondino Foundation belongs, its role being to coordinate clinical trial activities.
Heads: Prof. Egidio D’Angelo
The BCC was established in 2009 with the idea of combining research on central nervous system function (at cellular-molecular and anatomo-functional level) with clinical observations in a variety of neurological disorders, with the ultimate aim of generating a high-tech ecosystem for neurological research.
The BCC is a participant in the European Human Brain Project.
The center’s research activities cover 7 main topic areas:
- Organization and regulation of cerebellar synaptic plasticity
- Anatomo-functional analysis of brain circuits using MRI techniques
- Regulation of brain circuits by means of neurostimulation
- Advanced neurophysiological analysis of sensory-motor and cognitive control
- Modeling of neural networks
- Cognitive and sensory-motor control: predictive functions and consciousness
- Big Data analysis using machine learning technologies.
Heads: Prof Stefano Bastianello, Prof Claudia Gandini Wheeler-Kingshott
This center was set up in 2012 as an integrated activity between the Mondino Foundation and the University of Pavia, the aim being to optimize the use, for research purposes, of a last-generation Siemens Skyra 3 Tesla MRI scanner purchased by the Foundation.
The center aims to help develop and strengthen neuroscience research through the application of quantitative MRI techniques that can be used to study the structure and functional organization of the brain. It stands as a national and international center of reference, on the strength of its being part of the network of Italian scientific research centers of excellence equipped with 3 Tesla MRI equipment, and also its collaborations with various research groups worldwide (in Europe and the USA).
Head: Dr Sabrina Signorini
This center is recognized by the Lombardy Region for its expertise in the prevention of blindness and the creation of centers for visual rehabilitation.
It caters for children and adolescents (0-18 years) and deals, in particular, with the diagnosis and rehabilitation care of:
- patients with cerebral visual impairment due to damage to, or malfunctioning of, the retrogeniculate visual pathway;
- subjects with rare diseases involving visual impairment (e.g. Leber’s congenital amaurosis (LCA), Joubert syndrome, septo-optic dysplasia);
- subjects at risk of neurological and/or visual impairment (e.g. preterm infants).
It is the reference center for the Italian Association for Leber’s Congenital Amaurosis (LCA is an early-onset inherited retinal dystrophy).
In 2018, a joint research laboratory as set up between the Mondino Foundation and the Italian Institute of Technology (IIT) in Genoa, dealing with the topic ‘neuro-ophthalmology and rehabilitation technologies for early intervention in pediatric subjects’.
Head: Dr Giuseppe Micieli
SCENT was born of the need to create, within the institute, an interdepartmental and inter-company center that can act as a facilitator in the coordination, integration and development of pre-clinical and clinical research in the field of stroke and emergency neurology.
The center’s main areas of interest are the following:
- development of performance indicators, organizational models, advanced biomedical models (implementation of guidelines, procedure management support);
- realization of integrated local networks;
- search for genetic and neuroimaging markers;
- evaluation of pro-inflammatory mechanisms in acute stroke;
- research into pro-ischemic mechanisms in animal and cell models;
- conducting of pilot studies on possible innovative treatments in the field of stroke and emergency neurology;
- development and validation of decision algorithms in neurological emergencies.
Head: Dr Fabio Blandini
The CRND was founded in 2012, as an evolution of the Interdepartmental Parkinson’s Disease Research Center, with the aim of integrating and optimizing clinical and preclinical research activities (concerning the main neurodegenerative diseases) carried out by different clinical/care units, centers and laboratories within the Foundation.
In fact, the clinical and scientific expertise of the various CRND facilities covers all the areas of potential research interest, from basic neuroscience (study of the etiopathogenetic and pathophysiological mechanisms of disease) to diagnosis, clinical/care and therapeutic (pharmacological, surgical and rehabilitation) aspects.
Head: Dr Carlo Andrea Galimberti
Set up in 1977, this is a recognized center at regional level for the study and treatment of epilepsy (it is part of “Epinetwork”, the Lombardy Region’s Network of Epilepsy Centers); it also attracts many patients from other regions.
The diagnostic-therapeutic pathways followed by our patients with epilepsy are constantly inspired and adapted to current national and international guidelines.
Drug-resistant patients are carefully assessed both for their suitability for possible new drug treatments (within the context of experimental trials of new-generation antiepileptic drugs), and may also be specifically assessed to determine whether they are suitable candidates for surgical treatment.
The unit routinely collaborates with the Epilepsy Surgery Center at the Hospital of Niguarda (MI).
Head: Dr Roberto Bergamaschi
Established in 2008, this center integrates the clinical and instrumental research activities carried out by the Foundation’s other units, centers and research laboratories working in the area of multiple sclerosis (MS) that, together, follow around 1300 patients.
The center uses cutting-edge equipment shared with the Evoked Potentials and Eye Movement laboratories; it participates in numerous clinical trials of MS therapies, including the most innovative ones.
Head: Dr Angela Berardinelli
The Regional Reference Center for Pediatric Neuromuscular Diseases deals with the diagnosis and follow-up of patients affected by different neuromuscular diseases: muscular dystrophies, spinal atrophy, hereditary neuropathies, etc.
Part of the center’s activity consists of diagnostics and clinical management, and this is flanked by and integrated with its research activity.
The clinical-diagnostic and some instrumental activities, as well as part of the molecular diagnostics, are carried out within the institute; for histopathological diagnostics (muscle biopsies), the center takes tissue samples directly, but uses other laboratories for molecular analyses that are not carried out on site.
The center collaborates with other Italian and international centers on national scientific projects dealing with neuromuscular diseases, especially those funded by UILDM-Telethon and by the Italian Myology Association.
Head: Dr Raffaele Manni
This center is involved in healthcare delivery and research in the field of primary sleep disorders and sleep dysfunctions associated with various neurological diseases, particularly epilepsy and neurodegenerative diseases. It is part of three international study groups working in these areas: the IRBD (International Rem Behavior Disorder Group), the European Insomnia Network, and the International Sleep & Epilepsy Task Force.
Head: Dr Cristina Cereda
The GpG Center is a molecular research and diagnostics center that focuses on the genetic, molecular and cellular processes underlying neurological diseases. Its main objective is to exploit innovative techniques and technologies in the field of neurogenomics and neurobiology, using them in order to study pathogenetic processes underlying central nervous system diseases, and thus favor the development of therapies. The center is structured to create a path that, starting from basic research, and passing via translational research, leads to an advanced diagnostic center increasingly focused on patients’ needs, and ultimately to “personalized” medicine.
The GpG Center is organized, by biotechnology topic areas (listed below), into five units that are closely interconnected internally and have a strong network of national and international collaborations:
- Neurogenetics and molecular genomics
- Transcriptomics and epigenomics
- Proteomics and biomarker discovery
- Cellular and tissue analysis
- Bioinformatics and systemic biology
Head: Prof. Silvia Figini
The BioData Science Center is involved mainly in:
- the development of high-innovation statistical, mathematical and computational methodologies, for real support and advancement of modern biomedical research;
- collaborations with international experts dealing with mathematical and statistical modeling in the medical, biological, genetic and image analysis fields;
- the creation of data analysis tools for monitoring strategic projects (defining key risk indicators, operational and economic efficiency indicators, and performance indicators to measure expected results);
- the provision of support for clinical decision making and the development of new research projects, identifying the best data collection methods and the necessary IT infrastructures, as well as developing mathematical and statistical analyses.