The brain is the most complex, but also the most vulnerable part of our body. “How does the brain work?” has been among the most frequently asked questions for more than centuries. Elucidation of molecular and cellular mechanisms of brain function is a prerequisite to understand its pathologies and to develop novel and better therapies. Therefore, training and education of neuroscientists will be of paramount importance to the future prosperous development of the European countries.

The EU-GliaPhD consortium has defined the following aims in a novel European Training Network funded by EU Horizon 2020:

  • to train the future generation of neuroscientists
  • to enhance and improve the communication with the public
  • to establish inter-sectorial collaborations between academia and industry

Research on brain function is of paramount importance to develop better therapies. It is essential to disseminate research results, but also to learn more about patients’ priorities and to help them and their families in understanding the disease burden.

To address these aims established European neuroscientists joint forces with two industrial partners to form the innovative European Training Network EU-GliaPhD. Our network is complemented by four associated partner organisations from the private sector contributing to training, dissemination, outreach and management. Thereby, the training-by-research programme of the EU-GliaPhD early-stage researchers will be highly inter-sectorial, addressing academic AND industrial research requirements as well as bidirectional interactions with the public via social media and face-to-face with patients’ organisations.

The research of the EU-GliaPhD principal investigators addresses mechanisms of cell-cell communication in the healthy and the diseased brain. The technical expertise covers mouse and human genetics, immunohistochemistry, molecular and cellular biology, advanced microscopy and electrophysiology in vivo and in situ, large neuronal ensemble recordings in freely moving animals, high throughput drug screening and development of novel research instrumentation.