Complex Brain Networks and Nutrition

Summary

This project will develop models to help understand the networks involving modules in the prefrontal cortex and their interaction with modules in the limbic cortex which play the central role in stress, anxiety and depression, and where nutrition and lifestyle play a very significant role.

Supervisor(s)

Professor Stephen Simpson, Professor Louise Baur, Professor Max Bennett, Professor Ian Caterson, Associate Professor Michael Charleston, Associate Professor Timothy Gill, Professor Liaquat Hossain

Research Location

Charles Perkins Centre – the Judith and David Coffey Life Lab

Program Type

Masters/PHD

Synopsis

There have been major advances in the quantitative description of complex brain network organizations. These networks possess modularity, connected hubs and small-world topology. This occurs at both the level of single neurons as well as at the level of complete brain neuroimaging. Techniques such as human electroencephalography as well as structural and functional magnetic resonance imaging and animal positron emission tomography are available at the Brain and Mind Research Institute to collect data and test hypotheses concerning these networks. We are particularly interested in the analysis of networks involving modules in the prefrontal cortex and their interaction with modules in the limbic cortex which play the central role in stress, anxiety and depression, and where nutrition and lifestyle play a very significant role.

Additional Information

The Life Lab creates a new kind of graduate and postgraduate training environment at the interface between life, social, economic and physical sciences. Its focus is to address the significant challenges we face from an unsustainable food system that degrades the environmental services it depends on, and creates significant societal health problems. A better understanding of the complexity of the environment-food-health nexus is critical. It is fundamental to building a sustainable society, and one that is more robust to future uncertainties. Our unique approach will be a world-first in shifting research on these growing challenges from treating symptoms to prevention.Life Lab will challenge existing paradigms and university models to create a research training environment in which traditional disciplinary boundaries do not apply. Our ambitious vision is to create an ‘innovation hub' where researchers from disciplines spanning physical, life and social and economic sciences will interface with business, government and agency leaders. It will develop integrated approaches to the challenges that threaten societal wellbeing, and train the next generation of experts with the skills required to find solutions.

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Keywords

Neuroscience, nutrition, depression, stress, modeling, networks

Opportunity ID

The opportunity ID for this research opportunity is: 1695

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