Thesis topic proposal
Zoltán Ungvári
"Vascular contributions to cognitive decline and dementia"


Institute: University of Szeged
theoretical medicine
Theoretical Medicine Doctoral School

Thesis supervisor: Zoltán Ungvári
Location of studies (in Hungarian): University of Szeged, Faculty of Medicine, Faculty of Science and Informatics
Abbreviation of location of studies: OFOII

Description of the research topic:

Age-related cerebromicrovascular dysfunction and microcirculatory damage play critical roles in the pathogenesis of many types of dementia in the elderly, including Alzheimer’s disease. Our goal is to understand and target age-related pathophysiological mechanisms that underlie vascular contributions to cognitive impairment and dementia (VCID) for preserving brain health in older individuals. Maintenance of cerebral perfusion, protecting the microcirculation from high pressure-induced damage and moment-to-moment adjustment of regional oxygen and nutrient supply to changes in demand are prerequisites for the prevention of cerebral ischemia and neuronal dysfunction. Our goal is to understand age-related alterations in three main regulatory paradigms involved in the regulation of cerebral blood flow: cerebral autoregulation/myogenic constriction, endothelium-dependent vasomotor function and neurovascular coupling responses responsible for functional hyperemia. Pathophysiological consequences of cerebral microvascular dysregulation in aging are explored, including blood brain barrier disruption, neuroinflammation, exacerbation of neurodegeneration, development of cerebral microhemorrhages, microvascular rarefaction and ischemic neuronal dysfunction and damage. Novel interventions to prevent/delay age-related cerebromicrovascular dysfunction and cognitive decline are developed, using innovative animal models of aging, behavioral testing, modern methods of molecular biology, cell biology and in vivo imaging. The research will be conducted as part of the ongoing collaboration between the Translational Vascular Cognitive Impairment Program of the University of Szeged and the Vascular Cognitive Impairment and Neurodegeneration Program of the Reynolds Oklahoma Center on Aging/Oklahoma Center for Geroscience (University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center, Oklahoma, USA).

Required language skills: english
Number of students who can be accepted: 1

Deadline for application: 2019-12-31

All rights reserved © 2007, Hungarian Doctoral Council. Doctoral Council registration number at commissioner for data protection: 02003/0001. Program version: 2.2358 ( 2017. X. 31. )