Lectures on neuroactive drug components, neurodegenerative diseases

On Oct. 17, 18, and 24 the Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology will host lectures by Professor Alexis Gautreau on the design of drugs, their neuroactive components, and neurodegenerative diseases. The talks are held at 6:30 p.m. in the Phystech.Arctic building. This event has been organized by the MIPT Laboratory for the Development of Innovative Drugs and Agricultural Biotechnology.

The lectures will be delivered by MIPT visiting professor Alexis Gautreau, the director of the Biological Department at Ecole Polytechnique and research director at the French National Center for Scientific Research (CNRS).

You will find a synopsis for each of the three lectures below.

Oct. 17: Medication

This lecture is an overview of mankind’s attempts to cure diseases. It begins with a historical account of how empirical medicine was used to identify the first medications. The following large section of the talk is devoted to the currently used ways of identifying bioactive compounds. The final section is a discussion on the journey that a bioactive substance makes before becoming a medication.

Oct. 18: Neuroactive compounds

In this lecture, various drugs affecting the nervous system will be discussed. The first part of the lecture is about the way anesthetics work. It recounts the basic neurological principles, such as membrane potential and action potential. The second part presents an overview of recreational drugs and the mechanisms by which people become addicted. In the last part, Professor Gautreau will speak about various sedative molecules and antidepressants and the facts their studies reveal about the pathophysiological substratum of depression.

Oct. 24: Neurodegenerative diseases

Neurodegenerative diseases are a major challenge for modern societies, characterized by a growing proportion of elderly people. The third lecture overviews the most important diseases of this kind, including sporadic Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases in aged people, as well as genetic diseases, such as Huntington’s, and the infectious diseases mediated by prions. The lecturer specifically looks at the shared underlying cause of protein misfolding and aggregation. The talk concludes with an attempt to define the elusive mechanisms responsible for neuronal death in these diseases.

The language of the lectures is English. MIPT students and faculty are welcome to attend.

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Time: 18:30

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