MRC Centre for Neurodevelopmental Disorders

Lead Research Organisation: King's College London
Department Name: Developmental Neurobiology

Abstract

Neurodevelopmental disorders are a group of disorders in which the development of the brain is disturbed. This can manifest as neuropsychiatric problems or impaired motor function, learning, language or non-verbal communication. These disorders include epilepsy, intellectual disability, autism, and even other diseases with a relatively late onset, such as schizophrenia. These disorders are very difficult to treat and often cause a life-long disability.

The development of the brain is a highly orchestrated process, controlled by genetic information under very clear influence from the environment. In humans, brain development prolongs from early in life to adolescence, when many connections between neurons, the cells of the brain, are actively remodelled. Any deviation from this very protracted program can result in neurodevelopmental disorders and, depending on specific timing, might lead to distinct pathology later in life.

Neurodevelopmental disorders have a prominent genetic basis, although this does not necessarily mean that they are hereditary. For instance, many patients carry de novo mutations - an alteration in a gene that is present for the first time in one family member as a result of a mutation in a germ cell (egg or sperm) of one of the parents or in the fertilized egg itself. Recent advances in human genetics have identified specific mutations with these disorders. Unfortunately, we still do not understand how these mutations and concomitant environmental insults cause neurodevelopmental disorders.

Our vision is to build a world-class Centre at King's College London with research programmes that will transform our understanding of the origin of neurodevelopmental disorders. To this end, we will investigate the biological mechanisms underlying these disorders in human patients and animal models. We will also train and nurture the next generation of scientific leaders in the field, equipped to dissolve the boundaries that exist between basic research and clinical disciplines.

In the long term, we aim to translate the new knowledge into clinical advances that change the lives of affected individuals and their families, in collaboration with industrial partners, other research centres and patient associations.

Technical Summary

The MRC Centre for Neurodevelopmental Disorders will bring together world-leading researchers in psychiatry, neonatology, neurology and neuroscience with the goal of identifying the biological mechanisms underlying neurodevelopmental disorders. This synergy will lead to breakthroughs in understanding which would otherwise not be possible. To reach this goal, we will combine mechanistic studies on patients and the genetic discoveries that are becoming available through the work of large sequencing consortia to guide our interrogation of specific brain circuits in both animal models and humans. In addition, we will explore how environmental factors influence the impact of disease susceptibility genes, both in humans and in animal models.

Our research will focus on epilepsy, autism spectrum disorder and schizophrenia, three disorders that are largely caused by abnormal brain development. These are high prevalence diseases which cause long-term burden, and are very difficult to treat. In addition, although these conditions represent a spectrum of diseases with broad sets of causes and clinical manifestations, they have overlapping phenotypes and genetics, which are suggestive of common deficits. The research focus of the new Centre is justified by our top clinical expertise in this field, the access to large patient populations, and our existing high-profile research programmes on neurodevelopment.

In five years, we will contribute to dissolving the boundaries that exist across clinical disciplines and that prevent an integrated understanding of common versus distinct biological mechanisms in neurodevelopmental disorders. Our unique combination of basic and clinical researchers will train and nurture the next generation of scientific leaders in the field, equipped with a translational agenda and a multidisciplinary set of skills. Finally, we also expect the Centre to develop new collaborations with Industry to identify and test new treatments for these disorders.

Planned Impact

Beneficiaries:

The MRC Centre for Developmental Disorders will mainly carry out research on the neurobiological and environmental causes of epilepsy, autism spectrum disorders and schizophrenia. The beneficiaries from our research will be: (1) pharmaceutical companies, (2) policy-makers, and (3) patients and their families. We will valorise the entire dataset for further exploitation by the UK and/or global industry because this is in the best interest of the population of patients with neurodevelopmental disorders. Should the full potential of our scientific strategy come to fruition, the financial saving due to halting disease progression will be considerable.

Expected impacts:

Disease prevention and health promotion: More than 129 billion euros (as of 2010) are spent each year in Europe on the disorders that are the focus of this proposal. Our Centre will work towards the identification of the mechanisms causing these disorders. We will also identify how these mechanisms interact at different 'critical periods' (e.g., at birth) with environmental factors. This will help prevent neurodevelopmental disorders by defining the time at which specific pathophysiology should be targeted. More effective treatments based on the underlying pathophysiology will substantially reduce costs of health care.

Raising awareness and combating stigmatization: Our Centre will commit to raising public awareness on neurodevelopmental disorders. One of our main objectives is to educate professionals and the public about neurodevelopmental disorders to combat stigmatization and to promote a healthy life style. This is particularly important for schizophrenia, which has a long history of neglect, demonisation and concealment.

Therapy development through biologically validated targets: Selection of targets in psychiatry is driven largely by historical success. We propose working with genetic variants associated with neurodevelopmental disorders to identify common abnormal pathways, i.e., points of convergence, which could become new therapeutic targets.

Therapy development through more effective clinical trials: A fundamental problem in neurodevelopmental clinical trials is the reliance on a list of subjective criteria (as in DSM-5), which leads to the selection of a biologically heterogeneous population. We will use biomarkers to identify signatures that predict outcome, thereby providing a rational basis for patient selection and stratification in clinical trials. This should lead to more efficient and cost-effective clinical trials, thereby facilitating the development of new therapies.

Provision of specialists in neurodevelopmental disorders: We will train a new generation of scientists and clinicians with an integrated view of neurodevelopmental disorders. The provision of these specialists to the workforce will improve the competitiveness of the UK in this field, and will contribute to increase the effectiveness of public services.

Improving speed of impact: We will liaise with major stakeholders such as the EMA, patient organizations and Pharma, to help define the shortest development pathway for regulatory and market approval, making our findings available to the patients as quickly as possible.

Improving health services: Our Centre will play a major role in a nationwide effort to coordinate research and clinical practice through an MRC-funded Neurodevelopmental Disorders Network. In particular, we will contribute to redefining these disorders based on empirical evidence as opposed to classical diagnostic boundaries. This concerted effort should contribute to increasing the effectiveness of public services in the UK, and serve as a model for other European countries.

Publications

10 25 50

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Abela E (2019) Slower alpha rhythm associates with poorer seizure control in epilepsy. in Annals of clinical and translational neurology

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Ajram LA (2019) The contribution of [1H] magnetic resonance spectroscopy to the study of excitation-inhibition in autism. in Progress in neuro-psychopharmacology & biological psychiatry

 
Description 3D Volume Serial Block Face Imaging Facility.
Amount £602,744 (GBP)
Funding ID 108461/Z/15/Z 
Organisation Wellcome Trust 
Sector Charity/Non Profit
Country United Kingdom
Start 11/2016 
End 11/2021
 
Description A quantitative approach towards understanding the evolutionary cortical size regulation
Amount £177,936 (GBP)
Organisation The Leverhulme Trust 
Sector Academic/University
Country United Kingdom
Start 09/2014 
End 08/2018
 
Description AIMS-2-TRIALS: Autism Innovative Medicine Studies - 2 - Trials
Amount £43,999,999 (GBP)
Funding ID 777394 
Organisation European Commission 
Sector Public
Country European Union (EU)
Start 06/2018 
End 05/2023
 
Description Assembly and organisation of inhibitory networks in the cerebral cortex
Amount £216,893,600 (GBP)
Funding ID 202758/Z/16/Z 
Organisation Wellcome Trust 
Department Wellcome Trust Senior Investigator Award
Sector Private
Country United Kingdom
Start 07/2017 
End 07/2022
 
Description Clinical Research Fellowship
Amount £487,000 (GBP)
Organisation Wellcome Trust 
Sector Charity/Non Profit
Country United Kingdom
Start 03/2018 
End 02/2021
 
Description Collaboration Award
Amount £75,000 (GBP)
Organisation George Washington University 
Sector Academic/University
Country United States
Start 04/2017 
End 03/2018
 
Description Developmental principles for the functional specialisation of inhibitory circuits in neocortical areas
Amount £1,975,000 (GBP)
Funding ID 787355 
Organisation European Commission 
Sector Public
Country European Union (EU)
Start 09/2018 
End 08/2023
 
Description Evolutionary mechanisms controlling brain size and complexity
Amount £687,921 (GBP)
Funding ID BB/S001530/1 
Organisation Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 09/2018 
End 08/2021
 
Description Identification and Functional Analysis of Risk Genes for Autistic Macrocephaly
Amount $60,000 (USD)
Organisation Brain & Behaviour Research Foundation 
Sector Charity/Non Profit
Country United States
Start 01/2014 
End 12/2016
 
Description Imaging Focal Epilepsy in Children: A Developmental Perspective
Amount £995,096 (GBP)
Funding ID 206675/Z/17/Z 
Organisation Wellcome Trust 
Sector Charity/Non Profit
Country United Kingdom
Start 01/2017 
End 07/2022
 
Description Innovative Medicines Initiative
Amount € 117,000,000 (EUR)
Organisation European Union 
Sector Public
Country European Union (EU)
Start 04/2018 
End 04/2023
 
Description Light sheet microscope for 3D imaging of large samples and improved in vivo imaging
Amount £414,588 (GBP)
Funding ID 208373/Z/17/Z 
Organisation Wellcome Trust 
Sector Charity/Non Profit
Country United Kingdom
Start 01/2017 
End 08/2022
 
Description Lineage reprogramming of glia into subtype-specific cortical neurons
Amount £2,600,000 (GBP)
Funding ID 206410/Z/17/Z 
Organisation Wellcome Trust 
Sector Charity/Non Profit
Country United Kingdom
Start 03/2018 
End 03/2023
 
Description MRC Centre for Neurodevelopmental Disorders: Seed grant
Amount £50,000 (GBP)
Funding ID MR/N026063/1 
Organisation Medical Research Council (MRC) 
Sector Academic/University
Country United Kingdom
Start 11/2017 
End 10/2018
 
Description NARSAD Independent Investigator Award
Amount $100,000 (USD)
Funding ID 25957 
Organisation Brain & Behaviour Research Foundation 
Sector Charity/Non Profit
Country United States
Start 09/2017 
End 09/2019
 
Description Proximity to Discovery Industry Engagement Fund
Amount £29,960 (GBP)
Organisation Medical Research Council (MRC) 
Sector Academic/University
Country United Kingdom
Start 01/2018 
End 06/2018
 
Description Seed Funding
Amount £50,000 (GBP)
Organisation Medical Research Council (MRC) 
Sector Academic/University
Country United Kingdom
Start 10/2017 
End 09/2018
 
Description The emergence and plasticity of a balance between excitation and inhibition along dendrites
Amount £649,432 (GBP)
Funding ID BB/S000526/1 
Organisation Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 09/2018 
End 09/2021
 
Description Understanding the contribution of cortical interneuron dysfunction to schizophrenia
Amount £2,046,740 (GBP)
Funding ID MR/S010785/1 
Organisation Medical Research Council (MRC) 
Sector Academic/University
Country United Kingdom
Start 05/2019 
End 04/2024
 
Description Understanding the contribution of cortical interneurons dysfunction to schizophrenia
Amount £2,046,740 (GBP)
Funding ID MR/S010785/1 
Organisation Medical Research Council (MRC) 
Sector Academic/University
Country United Kingdom
Start 05/2019 
End 04/2024
 
Title High Content Synapse Assay 
Description This assay has been developed to assess the potential neuroprotective or neurorestorative of compounds against the synaptotoxic effects of amyloid beta on synapse number. It uses mature primary cortical cultures as platform from which to screen for protective compounds. It allows for the screening of a large number of compounds and the automated analysis of data. 
Type Of Material Technology assay or reagent 
Year Produced 2016 
Provided To Others? No  
Impact We have used this methodology to screen over 80 compounds for their neuroprotective properties as part of a larger collaboration with researchers in the SMART-AD project. This has helped to identify 6 compounds (also identified from other screens) that are now being tested further within in vivo models. 
 
Description Deciphering mechanisms of altered neurodevelopment in BAF complex intellectual disability disorders 
Organisation Francis Crick Institute
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Charity/Non Profit 
PI Contribution Intellectual input, training of staff and expertise in stem cell biology.
Collaborator Contribution Intellectual input and training of staff.
Impact None yet.
Start Year 2017
 
Description Development of novel light sheet microscopes for imaging of synapses within intact tissue 
Organisation M Squared Lasers Ltd
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Private 
PI Contribution Materials, Intellectual input and expertise in synapse and stem cell biology.
Collaborator Contribution Training of staff, access to novel materials and instruments, intellectual input.
Impact Several papers in preparation; Institute of Physics innovation award
Start Year 2016
 
Description EU AIMS 
Organisation European Commission
Department Innovative Medicines Initiative (IMI)
Country European Union (EU) 
Sector Multiple 
PI Contribution This is an EU IMI initiative in autism. We lead this multicentre research network. This has now transitioned to AIMS-2-TRIALS to run from 2018-2023 in which I am principal investigator.
Collaborator Contribution providing a platform for innovative medicine discovery
Impact This first initiative from the EU (EU-AIMS) ended after 5 years and a second collaboration AIMS-2-TRIALS involving 48 international partners began in 2018.
Start Year 2011
 
Description EU AIMS 
Organisation F. Hoffmann-La Roche AG
Country Global 
Sector Private 
PI Contribution This is an EU IMI initiative in autism. We lead this multicentre research network. This has now transitioned to AIMS-2-TRIALS to run from 2018-2023 in which I am principal investigator.
Collaborator Contribution providing a platform for innovative medicine discovery
Impact This first initiative from the EU (EU-AIMS) ended after 5 years and a second collaboration AIMS-2-TRIALS involving 48 international partners began in 2018.
Start Year 2011
 
Description Estrogens in health and disease 
Organisation AstraZeneca
Department Astra Zeneca
Country United States 
Sector Private 
PI Contribution My lab has conducted experiments, provided expertise in synapse biology, intellectual input and training of staff.
Collaborator Contribution Our collaborators have have conducted experiments, provided intellectual input, training of staff as well as reagents.
Impact We have a joint PhD student funded by BBSRC and several publications either published or under preparation.
Start Year 2014
 
Description Human Dev. Neuro Collabortive Satellite 
Organisation Francis Crick Institute
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Charity/Non Profit 
PI Contribution CH led an initiative to develop a collaborative research programme to understand the human property of early CNS development. This collaboration is embedded inside the partnership space of the FCI. The research programme is co-led by James Briscoe, Kate Storey and Francois Guillemot. The ambition proposed by CH is to form an internationally visible hub focused in early stages of human brain and spinal cord development.
Collaborator Contribution Our partners at the FCI provide expertise and supervision time as well as equipment to articulate our collaborative objectives.
Impact Too early
Start Year 2018
 
Description Investigating the retrotranscriptome and its role in brain development and stem cell fate 
Organisation George Washington University
Country United States 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution Training of staff, intellectual input, expertise in stem cell biology and neuroscience.
Collaborator Contribution Training of staff, intellectual input, expertise in virology.
Impact Several publications are currently in preparation or are under review. This collaboration is multi-disciplinary including neuroscience and virology.
Start Year 2017
 
Description Modelling schizophrenia using patient-specific induced puripotent stem cells. 
Organisation Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai
Country United States 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution We are providing intellectual input and training of staff.
Collaborator Contribution Our collaborators are providing novel materials.
Impact NA
Start Year 2018
 
Description Rodent rsfMRI 
Organisation Italian Institute of Technology (Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia IIT)
Country Italy 
Sector Public 
PI Contribution Provided new GM mouse model for rsfMRI
Collaborator Contribution Performed rsfMRI on a new mouse model of ASD
Impact Suetterlin et al. (2018) Cereb Cortex, in press
Start Year 2017
 
Description Role of NRXN1 in autism Spectrum Disorders 
Organisation University of Cambridge
Department Autism Research Centre (ARC)
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution Intellectual input, training of staff, expertise in stem cell biology and synapse biology, access to novel materials.
Collaborator Contribution Intellectual input and access to novel materials.
Impact This work has lead to 1 publication, 1 manuscript under review and several manuscripts under preparation.
Start Year 2016
 
Description Validating biomarkers in animal and cellular models of autism 
Organisation Karolinska Institute
Country Sweden 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution Materials, intellectual input and expertise in developmental and circuit-based biomarkers in rodent models.
Collaborator Contribution Training of staff, access to novel materials and instruments, intellectual input.
Impact No outcomes yet.
Start Year 2017
 
Description Validating biomarkers in animal and cellular models of autism 
Organisation University of Basel
Country Switzerland 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution Materials, intellectual input and expertise in developmental and circuit-based biomarkers in rodent models.
Collaborator Contribution Training of staff, access to novel materials and instruments, intellectual input.
Impact No outcomes yet.
Start Year 2017
 
Description Validating biomarkers in animal and cellular models of autism 
Organisation University of Groningen
Country Netherlands 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution Materials, intellectual input and expertise in developmental and circuit-based biomarkers in rodent models.
Collaborator Contribution Training of staff, access to novel materials and instruments, intellectual input.
Impact No outcomes yet.
Start Year 2017
 
Description Validating biomarkers in animal and cellular models of autism 
Organisation University of Oxford
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution Materials, intellectual input and expertise in developmental and circuit-based biomarkers in rodent models.
Collaborator Contribution Training of staff, access to novel materials and instruments, intellectual input.
Impact No outcomes yet.
Start Year 2017
 
Description Validating biomarkers in animal and cellular models of autism 
Organisation University of Ulm
Country Germany 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution Materials, intellectual input and expertise in developmental and circuit-based biomarkers in rodent models.
Collaborator Contribution Training of staff, access to novel materials and instruments, intellectual input.
Impact No outcomes yet.
Start Year 2017
 
Description Cell Voices: Building a Better Brain 
Form Of Engagement Activity A magazine, newsletter or online publication
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Opinion piece in Cell about the future of neuroscience and the possibility of building new or enhancing our own brains.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
URL https://www.cell.com/cell/fulltext/S0092-8674(18)31318-7?_returnURL=https%3A%2F%2Flinkinghub.elsevie...
 
Description DevNeuro Academy 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an open day or visit at my research institution
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact The DevNeuro Academy Widening Participation project consists of a regular programme of activities designed to improve the progression and success of students currently under-represented at our university and other institutes of higher education. The project combines a series of four in-school interactive 'Discovery workshops' with a two-week laboratory summer research work experience in our Centre. At the end of the work experience there will be a graduation ceremony here at Guy's campus. The students' families, class-mates and teachers will be invited and the students will be presented with a certificate.

Students from non-selective state schools are widely under-represented at top universities. 48% of privately educated children go on to study at a highly selective university, whilst only 18% of state school children, and a staggering 2% of children eligible for free school meals, gain a place at a highly selective university.

The primary objective of the DevNeuro Academy project is to engage with challenging local non-selective state schools and contribute towards changing these numbers.

The workshops were designed with the goal of providing the students with solid conceptual foundations, as well as skills and new ideas to further build on. Each workshop combines theoretical talks and lots of interactive activities about the exciting field of developmental neurobiology.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016,2017,2018,2019
 
Description Green Man Festival 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Stall hosted at Green Man Festival in Einstein's Garden with aim to engage general public in neurobiology and neurodevelopmental disorders
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
 
Description Interview about Brexit for Science 
Form Of Engagement Activity A press release, press conference or response to a media enquiry/interview
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Media (as a channel to the public)
Results and Impact Interview with Science about the potential impact of Brexit on science in the UK
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
URL https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2018/12/looming-parliament-vote-boosts-brexit-jitters-uk-scientists
 
Description Invited speaker, Charité - Universitätsmedizin Berlin 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact I gave a research seminar at the Institut für Medizinische Psychologie to the groups led by Professors Buss and Etringer around the work conducted in my lab on maternal immune activation (funded by MRC) in which we have a mutual research interest with potential for translation to human work from our animal studies and vice versa. The talk sparked some debate and plans for future activity were discussed.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
 
Description Invited speaker, Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Postgraduate students
Results and Impact I gave the guest lecture at the 2018 iBrain graduate school symposium at Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf. This sparked questions from the students about our work and allowed me to interact with other faculty at HHU, including my existing collaborators there.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
 
Description Invited speaker, University Medical Centre, Utrecht 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact The Brain Center Rudolf Magnus UMC Utrecht has initiated a monthly lecture series named after the founder of Biological Psychiatry in the Netherlands and emeritus Chair of Psychiatry in Utrecht, Herman van Praag.

The lectures will be for staff, researchers and residents within the Department of Psychiatry. These meetings tend to inform, educate and stimulate participants in their education and research.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
 
Description Lecture for students in the Linacre Institute 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact Lecture on Gene x Environment for students in the Linacre Institute (an organisation which works with high achieving students who are based in the north-east of England and who come from widening participation backgrounds)
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
 
Description Lecture taught on King's K+ Academic Day (part of King's long-term widening participation scheme 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact Lecture taught on King's K+ Academic Day (part of King's long-term widening participation scheme)
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
 
Description MRC CNDD newsletter 
Form Of Engagement Activity A magazine, newsletter or online publication
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Monthly MRC CNDD newsletter
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017,2018,2019
 
Description MRC CNDD seminar series 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact MRC CNDD seminar series open to all at KCL
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017,2018
 
Description MRC CNDD website 
Form Of Engagement Activity A magazine, newsletter or online publication
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Dedicated, standalone website for the MRC Centre for Neurodevelopmental Disorders
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017,2018,2019
URL https://devneuro.org/cndd/index.php
 
Description MSc student lab tours 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an open day or visit at my research institution
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Postgraduate students
Results and Impact Tours of the labs for postgraduate students
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2019
 
Description Marín lab website 
Form Of Engagement Activity A magazine, newsletter or online publication
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Marín lab website
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2010,2011,2012,2013,2014
URL http://devneuro.org.uk/marinlab/default.aspx
 
Description Promoting research in under-privileged schools 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact My lab is heavily participating to our Centre outreach programme selecting 30 A-level teenagers to receive seminars, workshop and lab placement across a few weeks in early summer. Schools targeted are from our underprivileged areas of South London. The event is covered by KCL web streams and Twitter feeds.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016,2017,2018,2019
URL https://devneuro.org/cdn/public-engagement.php
 
Description Public engagement activity in collaboration with Autistica 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Supporters
Results and Impact Organised and ran science demonstrations as part of public engagement activities for Autistica for their corporate sponsors and launch of their new research fundraising initiative
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
 
Description Raising awareness on brain disorders 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Postgraduate students
Results and Impact On Tuesday 9th May at 16:30, you will have the chance to watch the live streaming (by clicking here) of the conference 'Brain development: mental genius and illness' ('Desarrollo cerebral: genialidad y enfermedad mental') with Dr Óscar Marín, who completed his PhD in biology at the Complutense University in Madrid, and is the Head of the Centre for Developmental Neurobiology at the MRC in King's College London. He was the winner of the Banco Sabadell Award for Biomedical Research in 2008 and is currently a member of the jury. Dr Marín will explain how changes in the structure of the human brain could be the source of outstanding abilities and mental illnesses.

Dr Óscar Marín won the third Banco Sabadell Award for Biomedical Research for his research in the field of neuroscience, which has been used in various projects focusing on the development of the brain and the anomalies that take place during this process, which have been shown to lead, on some occasions, to mental disorders such as autism and schizophrenia.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
URL https://www.fundacionbancosabadell.com/en/siguelo-en-streaming-desarrollo-cerebral-genialidad-y-enfe...
 
Description Rico lab website 
Form Of Engagement Activity A magazine, newsletter or online publication
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Rico lab website
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2010,2011,2012,2013,2014
URL http://devneuro.org.uk/rico/default.aspx
 
Description School visit (Gravesend Grammar) 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an open day or visit at my research institution
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact ~100 pupils attended for a school visit to the research organisation, which sparked questions and discussion afterwards, and the school reported increased interest in psychology related subject areas
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
 
Description Symposium chair - Society for Biological Psychiatry meeting 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact ~50 to 100 people attended an expert workshop on the metabolic side-effects of antipsychotic drugs used in the treatment of schizophrenia and related psychoses. This sparked questions from the audience and debate with the panel. Plans were made to repeat the event.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
 
Description Symposium participant, German Association for Psychiatry, Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics (DGPPN) 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact I participated in an invited symposium at the 2018 DGPPN congress in which I presented our MRC-funded work on the impact of chronic antipsychotic drug exposure on the rat brain using MRI and post-mortem neuropathology. This sparked questions and debtate from the audience and follow up from Pharmaceutical companies who are developing novel antipsychotics.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
 
Description Symposium participant, Schizophrenia International Research Society Meeting 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Conference symposium - Schizophrenia Internaitonal Research Society meeting 2018. >100 people attended to hear four scientific presentations on the role of the immune system in schizophrenia, which sparked questions and discussion afterwards and helped to establish new collaborations with other research groups
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
 
Description Wingate lab website 
Form Of Engagement Activity A magazine, newsletter or online publication
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Wingate lab website
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2012,2013,2014,2015,2016
URL http://wingatelaboratory.blogspot.com
 
Description Women in leadership 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Other audiences
Results and Impact Workshop aiming to educate wide public, students and professionals on the current obstacles preventing women to take senior leadership roles and giving the younger audience the tools, motivation and opportunities to progress to these posts and improve our leadership. My role is to provide a summary of my research achievements and identify what has enable me to reach a leadership position in my field.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
 
Description Work Experience Placements 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an open day or visit at my research institution
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact The Hindges Lab has offered regularly Work Experience Placements for students from different schools (for example Pimlico Academy or Elmgreen School) to give them first hand experience in conducting biomedical research. We usually accepted 1-3 students per year. Feedback for participants was excellent and has changed their future plans to pursue a science degree.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014,2015,2016,2017,2018
 
Description in2ScienceUK 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an open day or visit at my research institution
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact Placement of 2 students in my lab as part of the In2ScienceUK network. Subsequently I was asked to present my experience at the Gala evening to all students and parents, as well as other audiences.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
 
Description in2ScienceUK 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an open day or visit at my research institution
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact in2scienceUK is an award winning charity which empowers students from disadvantaged backgrounds to achieve their potential and progress to STEM and research careers through high quality work placements and careers guidance. Since 2014, the Hindges Lab has offered placements for one or two students per year to provide first hand experience on neuroscience, molecular biology and cell biology research to students.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014,2015,2016,2017
 
Description work experience 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an open day or visit at my research institution
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact 1-week work experience placements x 3 for students from local schools considering pursuing neuroscience/science subjects at university/KCL
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018,2019