Behavioral neuroscience, aging and dementia
The Research group in Behavioral Neuroscience, Aging and Dementia (BNAD) is led by Associate Professor Claudia Rodríguez-Aranda and is pursuing active research in topics within the field of neuroscience. The main topics are sexual motivation, cognitive aging and early diagnosis of dementia.
Our group seeks to understand the relationship brain-cognition/ brain-behavior in humans and mammals by using a multidisciplinary approach based on advanced techniques including imaging techniques (MRI, fMRI); site specific silencing of hormone receptor expression with iRNA (shRNA) coupled to a viral vector (inactivated adenovirus), and pharmacological techniques for stimulating and inhibiting neurotransmitter systems as well as endogenous hormone synthesis.
Infrastructure. The BNAD group has two core areas to conduct research. The main one is at the department of psychology where a number of laboratories are available for research with humans. In these areas the group is well-equipped for modern EEG, gait analyses, motion capture systems and speech analyses. In addition, the group also has laboratories at the animal facilities of the Faculty of Health Sciences to carry out studies on rats. The equipment for animal studies comprises a videotracking system (Ethovision), running wheel system (Lafayette), ultrasound analysis system (Metris), stereotaxic instrument (Stoelting), freezing microtome (Leica) and equipment for immunohistochemistry. In addition numerous in-house equipment for tests of motivation, anxiety, learning, social recognition, social interaction in a seminatural environment, copulatory behavior in males and females.
Infrastructure at other institutions. Neuroimaging is also a major component of the research of the group and these studies are carried out at the University Hospital of North-Norway where MRI facilities are available for research.