Research is at the heart of the Vickie and Jack Farber Institute for Neuroscience at Jefferson, and it remains a crucial part of our mission. Each department carries out basic, translational, and clinical research designed to understand fundamental mechanisms of the normal and diseased brain.
Just as Jefferson neuroscientists are on the verge of important new therapies, overall funding for research into the causes and treatment for disease is declining; the competition for grants has intensified and endowments of foundations devoted to diseases have remained flat or even decreased. Basic scientists are in need of seed money for pilot studies and clinicians need support to take promising studies, such as immunotherapy for malignant brain tumors, to large-scale clinical trials. Gifts will give our investigators freedom to explore wherever their brains take them.
From research investigating the fundamental functioning of the healthy brain and nervous system to studies that are targeted to specifi c disease-linked cells, our scientists use molecular, cellular biochemical, genetic, physiological, anatomical and behavioral tools and approaches to develop new knowledge that changes our understanding of this complex system of neurons.
Clinical trials at Jefferson give our patients opportunities to access new treatments and innovations before those approaches are widely available elsewhere. Integrating our clinical trial program across the Jefferson Health enterprise opens up these important opportunities to more patients across the region.
Our specialists translate their understanding of the brain and the cellular and molecular functioning of the nervous system into treatments for neurodegenerative and other devastating disorders. Using novel imaging modalities such as the combined use of high- fi eld magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and positron emission tomography (PET), specialists can better assess cognitive function and more intricately map the brain and spine to develop even more precise surgical solutions.
Stem Cell Research & Regenerative Neuroscience Center
With the 2012 Nobel Prize-winning discovery that each person’s skin or blood cells can be used to produce stem cells, called induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells, it is now possible to study disease and test therapies in an individual patient’s actual cells. This has opened a new world of discovery for personalized treatments for multiple diseases of the central nervous system.
Integrated Magnetic Resonance Imaging Center
From the earliest work in neuroscience in the 1890s to recent studies showing structures within nuclei of neurons, new imaging technologies have propelled research, generated new fundamental knowledge, and fostered diagnostic and therapeutic tools. Using the state-of-theart facilities and the latest imaging technology, we are developing new ways of seeing the brain in action.