Home institution: Verona University – Italy (24 months)

Host institution: Foundation for Research and Technology Hellas – Greece (10 months)

PhD Enrolment #1: Verona University – Italy

PhD Enrolment #2: Lisbon University – Portugal

Supervisor #1: Gabriela Constantin

Supervisor #2: Nektarios Tavernarakis

Intersectoral Secondment: Biofabics – Portugal

Objectives: The Laboratory of Neuroimmunology and Neuroinflammation, Department of Medicine, University of Verona, Italy, is looking to appoint a Marie Curie Research Fellow within a fixed term project entitled “Role of Circadian clock dysfunction on inflammation mechanisms in Alzheimer’s disease”, funded by the Horizon Europe project TClock4AD.

The doctoral candidate will work for two years in Italy (Verona University) and for 10 months in Greece (Foundation for Research and Technology Hellas) and will be involved in a 2-month secondment to a Portuguese company (Biofabics LDA).

The main goal will be to study the role of circadian clock (CC) dysfunction in the induction of neuroinflammation and how targeting it may impact inflammation and immune mechanisms involved in AD-like disease. Cutting-edge technologies and methods, including single-cell RNA sequencing and other omics studies, advanced in vitro and in vivo microscopy, animal models of neurodegenerative diseases, spatial biology, multicolor flow cytometry, network analysis and other systems biology approaches will be employed for the PhD training. Specific objectives: i) Neuroimmunology and neuroinflammation research training programme in in vitro and in vivo methodologies to study the effect of CC dysfunction on inflammation mechanisms in animal models of amyloidosis and tauopathy. ii) Analysis of the effect of drugs targeting CC on neuroinflammation and immune cell function in in vitro and in vivo AD models.

Expected outcomes: The fellow is expected to generate breakthrough ideas in the assigned area of research, as well as to carry out research in line with the project plan. The fellow is also expected to contribute to dissemination and communication activities, besides actively collaborating within the TClock4AD network. This DC will work closely with the Lisbon University (FFUL) and BIOFABICS (advanced in vitro models, including organ-on-chip).