Massoud Baradaran-Shoraka

 Massoud Baradaran-Shoraka
Mentor: Dr. Brent Reynolds
College of Medicine
 
"I got involved with Dr. Reynolds’ lab to learn more about neural stem cells and neurodegenerative diseases. Since Dr. Reynolds is one of the pioneers of neural stem cells study, I was very excited to get accepted by one of his post-docs. In addition, getting involved in a research lab gave me the opportunity to apply in real world what I have learned in classroom."
 

Major

Microbiology

Minor

Physics

Research Interests

  • Neural Stem Cells
  • Neurodegenerative Diseases
  • Microbiology

Academic Awards

  • Anderson Scholar
  • President's Honor Roll
  • Momeni Foundation Assistant Scholarship

Organizations

  • Pre-Professional Service Organization
  • Relay for Life

Volunteer

  • Shands at UF

Hobbies and Interests

  • Soccer
  • Sand Volleyball
  • Outdoors
  • Motorcycle Riding

Research Description

Assessment of the validity of increased levels of Neural Progenitor Cells due to Deep Brain Stimulation
Preliminary data from human post-mortem studies of Parkinson Disease (PD) patients who have undergone Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS) shows an up-regulation of neural progenitor cells (NPC) around the location of the stimulation, in the third ventricle, and around the subventricular zone. The validity of this hypothesis can contribute to new therapeutic approaches to treat PD. Induced neurogenesis using NPCs with the help of DBS can be used to replace impaired cells in basal ganglia and provide new dopaminergic neurons to return the levels of dopamine to pre-PD levels. Based on our preliminary results, we want to further analyze these cell types using immunohistochemistry, microscopic, and cell culture methods. Using electrical stimulation, we seek to demonstrate the increased levels of NPCs in rodent models, both PD and naive rats. Furthermore, we attempt to culture the neurogenic regions containing NPCs to establish a stable population for identification and differentiation purposes. Ultimately, the results will further enhance our understanding of how NPCs can be cultured and harnessed for treatment purposes.