Prof. Craig Ferris
Professor of Psychology and Pharmaceutical Sciences and Director, Center for Translational NeuroImaging
This is an exciting time for the Northeastern community. The completion of the Center for Translational NeuroImaging brings to campus state-of-the-art technology and expertise in the areas of magnetic resonance imaging and radionuclide molecular imaging with the purpose of understanding the central nervous system in health and disease. These imaging modalities offer the potential to visualize and quantify changes in brain function, plasticity and chemistry as a consequence of environmental insults and biological predisposition. As we grow from childhood through adolescence and into maturity, our brain changes. Insults like addictive drugs, environmental toxins or traumatic stress can trigger changes in our neurobiology contributing to the pathophysiology of many psychiatric and neurological disorders. With non-invasive imaging we can follow these changes in the same animal over its entire lifespan. Translating our findings from animals to humans will help aid in early diagnosis and the potential for development of new therapeutics. The CTNI will be addressing a number of psychiatric and neurological diseases that impact quality of life and contribute to the burgeoning cost of health care in our country. Faculty interests focus on a variety of neurobiological problems including Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases, PTSD, autism, drug addiction and violence. The spirit of global scientific cooperation and collaboration is paramount in these challenging times as we seek answers and solutions to our most devastating CNS disorders. To this end, the CTNI is designed to be to a “virtual” channel for research collaborations with video communications technology and remote data analysis and transfer capabilities that can enable colleagues from around the world to perform imaging studies on our scanners.