Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas
CSIC is the Spanish National Research Council (Agencia Estatal Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas), the largest public institution dedicated to research in Spain and the third largest in Europe. Its mission is to develop and promote research that will bring scientific and technological progress, in collaboration with Spanish and foreign entities. The Institute of Materials Science in Madrid (Instituto de Ciencia de Materiales, ICMM) is an institute of CSIC that belongs to the Area of Science and Technology of Materials. Its mission is to create new fundamental and applied knowledge in materials of high technological impact, their processing and their transfer to the productive sectors at local, national and European scales, the training of new professionals and the dissemination of the scientific knowledge.
The Laboratory of Dr. Serrano focuses on the design and development of new biomaterials potentially useful for biomedical applications including neural tissue engineering.Our expertise includes:
- Design, fabrication, characterization, and functionalization of biomaterials.
- Biocompatibility assessment by using in vitro models with immortalized and primary mammalian cells including progenitor neural cells.
- In vivo studies for biocompatibility assessments in rats.
Along with the Hospital Nacional de Parapléjicos (SESCAM), our laboratory constitutes the Research Unit of “Design and development of biomaterials for neural regeneration”, HNP-SESCAM, Joint Research Unit with CSIC. The multidisciplinary expertise of both research teams allows the creation of an enriched environment in which knowledge from basic science (Materials Science, Molecular and Cell Biology, Neuroscience, Histology, Pathologic Anatomy) is combined with the understanding of the clinical problem from the daily practice with spinal cord injury patients (Medicine).
In the ByAxon Project, research activities in our laboratory will focus on:
Biocompatibility tests in vitro of bypass elements and prototype:
- To evaluate the biocompatibility in vitro of the materials and nanostructured devices fabricated and tested with embryonic neural progenitor cells.
- To functionalize the bypass elements/prototype to enhance biocompatibility and reduce tissue disturbance.
Electrophysiological testing of the bypass parts and prototype:
- To exploit the ability of the nanosensors, nanostructured electrodes, and bypass prototype to promote efficient neural interfacing and synaptic activation. We will assist SISSA in the exploration of the artificial transfer of signals via the bypass prototype, eventually leading to functional reconnection of injured neural processes in vitro.
- Preliminary in vivo performance tests of the prototype when challenged by a physiological environment: Implantation of the device in the injured rat spinal cord.
Dr. M. Concepción Serrano