Nencki Institute Seminar

Dear All

I would like to invite you to the Nencki Institute Seminar next Thursday March the 30th at 3pm in the CN lecture hall.

We will host dr Mootaz Salman a Group Leader in Cellular Neuroscience at the Department of Physiology, Anatomy and Genetics and Kavli Institute of Nanoscience Discovery at the University of Oxford. Dr Mootaz Salman will give a lecture entitled: Defining mechanisms of blood-brain barrier dysfunction in neurodegenerative diseases using advanced organ-on-a-chip models

Dr. Salman investigates the mechanisms of blood brain barrier dysfunction in dementia using advanced 3D mechanobiologial organ-on-a-chip models.



Dementia is a multifactorial and heterogeneous condition and leading cause of morbidity and mortality. My work aims to answer the question: how does inflammation-mediated blood-brain barrier (BBB) dysfunction lead to the development of dementia? Increasing evidence supports the involvement of BBB dysfunction in neurodegenerative disorders including Parkinson’s and Alzheimer's; it is evident that this dysfunction happens even before the onset of dementia. In-depth understanding of the cell-cell interactions and signalling pathways between the core elements of the BBB will help in defining therapeutic targets for the prevention of dementia. In my previous work, I identified a number of molecular targets that contribute to barrier integrity function in astrocytes and pericytes and developed microfluidic BBB-on-a-chip models. My research group is building on this expertise in order to establish advanced models using patient-derived iPSC lines to investigate the role of neuroinflammation under mechanobiological factors and determine how biophysical factors such as blood pressure, flow rate and heartbeat affect BBB integrity. Our work will provide new tools to understand lifelong brain health, describe the basis of BBB dysfunction in the occurrence and development of dementia, and provide a platform to develop new treatments for neurodegeneration.


The seminar will be followed by a get together.

Best regards
Aleksandra Pękowska

Date of publication
24 March 2023
Date of event
Nencki Institute