NCCR-Synapsy

The Synaptic Bases of Mental Diseases

The Harmful Effects of Stress Unraveled – Alexandre Dayer

The 12th Synapsy newsletter is rich with interviews and portraits of students, clinical scientists and more senior researchers from the developmental stress working group of Synapsy (work package 4, WP#4). Its objective is to evaluate the long-term effect of exposure Read more…


Anti-stress meditation

Is meditation effective as an early intervention to reduce reactivity to stress and anxiety? The Mindfulteen study investigates the question using brain imaging. Mindfulness meditation is a technique borrowed from oriental medicine that consists of training oneself to be in Read more…


Breaking the transmission of trauma

Children of mothers with post-traumatic stress disorder have difficulty processing their emotions. Defining the neural bases of this dysfunction will help develop future treatments. Transmitting information, you do not have is by its very nature a tricky, even impossible, exercise. Read more…


No clinical work without understanding the basics

Silvia Monari explains the difficult choice she had to make between medicine and life sciences when deciding on what direction her studies would take. Silvia tells us how she intends to detect biomarkers of disease and possible therapeutic intervention for Read more…


Mapping the emotional management of trauma

Trauma can induce fear pathologies, which are treated using psychotherapeutic approaches whose brain pathways have recently been identified. Fear leaves traces in the brain, and remembering it causes a feeling of discomfort. During extreme trauma—such as the shock of war, Read more…


Neural signature of trait anxiety

The neurological basis of trait anxiety, a risk factor for the development of neuropsychiatric diseases, revealed by Synapsy researchers. Trait anxiety is a personality dimension related to the extent to which events are perceived as potentially threatening. The identification of Read more…


Maternal exposure to violence and child psychopathology

Synapsy has been following the children of mothers suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder due to interpersonal violence since they were 12 months of age. They are now reaching maturity, just like research projects designed to understand and treat stress-related disorders. Read more…


A Swiss network brings stress researchers together

stress-network

In an effort to promote stress research in Switzerland, Professors Carmen Sandi (EPFL Brain Mind Institute) and Dominique de Quervain (University of Basel) have founded stressnetwork.ch, a network of over 30 renowned scientists from Swiss universities working in different areas Read more…


How social rank can trigger vulnerability to stress

mice in nest

EPFL scientists have identified rank in social hierarchies as a major determining factor for vulnerability to chronic stress. They also show that energy metabolism in the brain is a predictive biomarker for social status as well as stress vulnerability and Read more…