What do we do?

The labs research focus is to understand the pathophysiology of neurodevelopmental injury, and to utilise this knowledge to target therapeutic and diagnostic tools. Current work is focused on the role of inflammation in normal and pathological neurodevelopment.

Pyramidal neuron in cortex

Perinatal inflammation is associated with alterations in cortical development, which has relevance for our understanding of neurodevelopmental disorders such as autism and cerebral palsy. We are currently identifying injury mechanisms and pursuing novel therapies to ameliorate these injuries.

In addition, the lab group is working with a neuroimaging experts at King’s College London to explore both the basic underpinning of neurodevelopmental injury and develop disease targeted biomarkers.

As part of an internal collaboration at the Royal Veterinary College, we are using a combined bioinformatics and cellular biology approach to explore vascular responses to injury. Cerebrovascular injury characterises, and is an initiating factor of, multiple neurological diseases. We hypothesise that changes in endothelial and vascular function over a lifetime creates risk of blood-brain barrier hyperpermeability, neuroinflammation, and subsequent neurodegeneration. To address this question, we are currently utilising published RNA-Seq data from cerebral endothelial cells to identify genes with consistently altered expression in response to the presence of different injurious stimuli. We will be investigating expression of the identified target genes/proteins in vitro in a model of repeated vascular injury in order to understanding of the essential pathways contributing to the acceleration of endothelial dysfunction and the pathophysiology of neurovascular disease.

More information can be found at https://www.rvc.ac.uk/about/our-people/helen-stolp#tab-research

Upcoming Events of Interest

Symposium on Signal Transduction at the Blood-Brain Barriers, Bari, Italy 21-23rd September, 2022