Servicio de Información Comunitario sobre Investigación y Desarrollo - CORDIS

Final Activity Report Summary - EURON (European graduate school of neuroscience)

The EURON project offered its Marie Curie fellows and PhD students a multidisciplinary research training programme in basic, cognitive and clinical neuroscience. Over its four years duration, strong research relationships were extended with the international partners of EURON through the possibilities of the acquired Marie Curie early training site. For the period 2006 to 2010, the European Union granted EURON the equivalent of 480 PhD training months, resulting in 26 fellowships.

These fellowships all varied in duration; however all of them were part of regular PhD positions at their host universities and were anticipated to be finalised with the achievement of a PhD degree and, on top of that, of a EURON certificate. A number of these fellowships were collaborative research projects between EURON groups resulting in mobility of the fellows between the universities and in joint papers. Moreover EURON, as a recognised training site, could invest in an international extensive educational programme. The courses and workshops that were organised reflected the expertise of the different EURON partners and joint educational events were encouraged. The platform to enhance scientific exchange between EURON partners was stimulated during the annual meetings for PhD students and Marie Curie fellows. The collaboration between the partners was illustrated through shared research interests, through the organisation of joint courses and workshops and by the exchange of Master and PhD students.

The common research interests and results were mainly in the field of neurodegeneration, especially focussing on Alzheimer research, and relevant initiatives took place at the universities of Maastricht, Bonn, Leuven and Cologne. Plasticity research was elaborated at the universities of Maastricht, Hasselt, Universite Libre de Bruxelles (ULB), University of Liege (ULG) and Nijmegen. Finally, regeneration research and repair mechanisms were investigated at the universities of Aachen (RWTH) and Maastricht.

EURON particularly focussed on linking the basic and clinical approach in several projects. As an illustration for such projects we could refer to the fellow projects between Maastricht University and the Academic Hospital Maastricht, which investigated deep brain stimulation in humans and animals. Moreover, other projects between RWTH and Maastricht concerned this translational approach within the project of spinal cord injury. The close relationship between the universities and university hospitals was the ideal setting for these translational projects. Intensive collaboration with the industry was furthermore of strategic importance for the EURON consortium, as was visible in the joint fellowship project between Maastricht and Johnson and Johnson.

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