Please join us for another exciting BrainTalks UBC event!
We hope to see you there!
Alex MacKay & Dr. Clare Beasley – Glial Cells and Myelin
Date: Thursday, October 17th, 2013
Pre-event: 5:30pm wine & cheese
Talk: 6:00 pm
Location: Paetzold Lecture Theatre, Jim Pattison Pavilion, VGH
Title: In vivo Magnetic resonance imaging of water in myelin
Myelin plays a key role in the efficient transmission of nerve signals; consequently the ability to monitor myelination in vivo has considerable value for following neurodevelopment and neurodegenerative processes. The magnetic resonance (MR) properties of water that is trapped between the bilayers of myelin are different from the MR properties of the rest of the water in central nervous system tissue making it possible to create images of myelin water using MR. This talk will report on applications of myelin water imaging in multiple sclerosis, dyslexia, schizophrenia and phenylketonuria.
Alex MacKay is a UBC professor with a joint appointment in Radiology and Physics & Astronomy. He is the Director of the UBC MRI Research Centre. His research program is dedicated to the use of MR to investigate pathological processes in brain and he has been doing myelin water imaging for more than two decades.
While neuroimaging studies have reported white matter abnormalities in schizophrenia and bipolar disorder, the cellular and molecular correlates of these alterations remain unclear. Dr. Beasley will discuss evidence from human post-mortem brain studies indicating that glial abnormalities lie at the heart of white matter pathology in these disorders.
Dr. Beasley is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychiatry at UBC and a Canadian Institutes for Health Research New Investigator. Work in her lab at the BC Mental Health and Addictions Research Institute focuses on identifying neuropathological features associated with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and major depressive disorder using post-mortem human brain tissue. In particular she is interested in white matter pathology, brain inflammation and glial cells.