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Research Departments >Functional and Systems Neurobiology department > Neuroactive steroids> Research Report

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Neuroactive steroids

Among the signals that affect brain development and function, neuroactive steroids play an important role. We are investigating the mechanisms of action of neuroactive steroids on neurons and glial cells. Our main emphasis is on the effects of ovarian hormones on neural plasticity and neuroprotection.

Our team is interested in the actions of steroids in the nervous system, with particular emphasis in their neuroprotective effects. Neuroactive steroids include hormonal steroids, such as estradiol, and steroids locally synthesized by neural cells.

Our present aims are to determine:

i) the neuroprotective and anti-inflammatory effects of estrogenic compounds in experimental models of degenerative and inflammatory diseases of the brain.

ii) whether aging and the duration of estrogen deprivation may affect its neuroprotective action.

iii) the cellular and molecular mechanisms of estrogen anti-inflammatory activity in the brain.

iv) the neuroprotective mechanisms of selective estrogen receptor modulators.

v) the functional significance of brain steroidogenesis and brain steroid metabolism.

vi) the interaction of estradiol with Notch signaling and the molecular mechanisms of dendritogenesis.

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