The following are samples of select projects currently underway at NeOLAB:
3D mapping of the neurotransmitter systems in the human diencephalon
Our previous studies involved high-resolution mapping of several peptidergic systems in the human diencephalon (Dudas et al. 2000-2004). Digital processing of consecutive hypothalamic sections provides complete 3D models of these systems. Superimposition of the peptidergic maps reveals the areas of putative interactions between the human peptidergic elements that can be elucidated by close examination of the overlapping sites.
Communication between the diencephalic peptidergic systems in humans
Intimate associations between LHRH and numerous other peptidergic systems have been described in the human diencephalon (Dudas et al. 2000-2004). These close contacts appear to be functional synapses, and may represent the morphological substrates of interactions between the peptidergic systems in human. Our current studies involve an attempt to reveal and characterize these “juxtapositions” between the hypothalamic neurotransmitter systems that are known to regulate complex autonomic processes including feeding, heat regulation, water balance and stress.
Hypothalamic regulation of stress
Catecholaminergic and CRH-immunoreactive fibers appear to innervate LHRH perikarya (Dudas et al. 2000), possibly representing the morphological base of stress-driven suppression of human reproduction. Further studies are focused on revealing the morphology of putative communication between catecholaminergic and numerous hypothalamic peptidergic elements. These data are crucial to understand the regulatory processes of stress in human.