Amrita varsity ties up with EU to study brain diseases

·2-min read

Coimbatore, Feb 22 (PTI) Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham became the first university in the country to partner with European Union's Human Brain Project (HBP) to better understand brain function and develop solutions to cure brain diseases.

A memorandum of understanding (MoU) to this effect was signed between Amrita Vidyapeetham and Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, Lausanne (EPFL), Switzerland, for working together on the project.

The Vidyapeetham and EPFL would work in collaboration with the University of Pavia, Italy, and Aix-Marseille University, France.

The development comes close on the heels of Amrita launching the Amrita Mind Brain Centre (AMBC) on its Amritapuri campus in Kerala to strengthen fundamental research related to brain, cognition, computations and neuro-engineering.

Led by associate professor Dr Shyam Diwakar as its director, the centre would develop new technologies to study brain function, dysfunction, and therapy.

'Functional signals directed by MRI techniques are widely used in specialty hospitals to monitor brain activity non- invasively. However, connecting these signals to the underlying activity of brain cells or neurons has been a challenge,' Diwakar said.

'In a project called BOLDsim, which is a part of Human Brain Projects voucher grant, we will develop a new computational tool for modeling functional signals in the brain using cellular data-driven models, he said in a press release.

The HBP project would run until 2023 although its first- level stage is expected to be completed by October 2021, the release said.

I am very happy that Amrita has become the first university in India to partner with EUs Human Brain Project and will model a simulator for better understanding of brain conditions and brain function,' the release quoting Vice- Chancellor of Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham Dr Venkat Rangan said.

Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham is a research-intensive institution that has over the last 15 years established more than 180 collaborations with the top-500 world-ranked universities, the release said. PTI NVM NVG NVG