The Padova Neuroscience Center (PNC) aims to understand the structural and functional organization of the brain at multiple spatial and temporal scales; how this organization mediates behavior, including development and aging; and, related alterations in diseases such as Alzheimer, Parkinson disease, depression, or stroke. The brain is conceptualized as a complex dynamic system in which behavior arises as an emergent property out of the interactions of billions of cells (neurons, glia) and hundreds of brain regions organized in networks.
PNC is organized in technological platforms (cores), each specialized in measuring, influencing, or modeling brain activity at different spatial and temporal scales. Activity is measured from the subcellular to the whole brain level, on a temporal scale spanning from milliseconds to years. Modeling using mathematical and statistical physics tools, and the development of novel methods of analysis, are essential to study large scale complex systems like the brain. A significant strength is the integration of basic and clinical neurosciences thanks to the collaborations with the Medical School of the University of Padua. Network science tools used to study the brain are also applied in social sciences and humanities, so that work within PNC has implication for economy, sociology, and philosophy.
The strong computational and technological competences are also an asset to the civic and economic communities of Padova and the Veneto Region. PNC will develop in collaboration with the Azienda Ospedaliera di Padova (AOP), clinical data bases for precision and individualized medicine. Furthermore, PNC aims at developing partnerships with industries and companies for the application of neuroscience to the real world.