Maintaining a healthy and “happy” brain is one of the most important goals individuals can have, not only for themselves but also for their family and friends. Unfortunately, brain diseases that cause dementia remain a serious health concern. A cardinal feature of dementia is memory impairments. If you know anyone with dementia, you can likely appreciate how memory problems compromise quality of life, and how devastating these impairments can be for their loved ones. Currently, there are no disease-modifying treatments available for dementia-related memory impairments. To develop mechanism-based therapies to enhance cognitive function, the molecular targets required for memory formation and those that cause memory dysfunction, need to be identified.
The Department of Neurobiology and Anatomy at the McGovern Medical School at UTHealth has a strong history in memory research and the underlying mechanisms of neuroplasticity. Research carried out by our faculty members ranges from identifying the molecules required for memory formation to how memory is stored at the systems level within the brain. In addition, the Department has a strong program in cortical processing of sensory information. One of the objectives of this research is to understand how the activity of neural networks underlie how one perceives the world. The Department, through intra- and inter-institutional collaborations, and in partnership with pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies, strives to bring laboratory discoveries to patients’ bedsides in order to cure diseases of the brain. To learn more, visit the department’s Research Activities page.
Pramod K. Dash
Professor and Interim Chair