Dr Severine Navarro: Severine.Navarro@qimrberghofer.edu.au
- This project is suitable for a PhD student.
Immune activation and inflammation during pregnancy plays an important role in the development/severity of major mental illnesses, such as mood disorders, anxiety, depression, behavioural disorders and schizophrenia. Preliminary evidence showed that the cross talk between the microbiome and the immune system plays a major role. We propose to investigate whether a diet with anti-inflammatory properties, such as the Mediterranean diet, implemented during pregnancy and/or in the early stages of life can reduce the onset and severity of mental disorders. We will use an experimental approach to determine the impact on brain connectivity using MRI imaging, Flow cytometry and fluorescence imaging to visualise and characterise the immune responses, and we will use metagenomic and metabolomic sequencing to identify the impact of diet on the microbiome. The effects on behaviour and cognition will also be determined.
- This program will provide measurable evidence on the gut-brain axis in the early stages of life.
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