BASIC SCIENCE CORE II: ANIMAL MODEL, BEHAVIORAL TESTING, AND HISTOLOGY Basic Science Core II (BSCII) will focus on in vivo and translational aspects of basic neuroscience and will encompass animal models and their behavioral testing, histology, microscopy, and neuropathology. The BSCII will assist investigators with animal models and behavioral testing allowing them to overcome the challenges of developing and characterizing new rodent models, particularly with behavioral phenotypes, which may be outside their areas of expertise. The core will offer the most refined models of NeuroAIDS currently available including immunodeficient mouse models of HIV encephalopathy, inducible and tissue specific transgenic, knockdown, or knockout models, cell transplantation models, viral vector delivery, etc. Expertise in behavioral testing for cognitive changes in learning and memory as well as peripheral neuropathies will be provided. The experience available in breeding and phenotyping of neurological models, and behavioral testing which can be particularly challenging, will be an invaluable resource. Assistance will also be provided with histological and immunohistochemical evaluation of human autopsy and biopsy clinical samples from patients with neurological disorders including AIDS, PML, neurodegenerative diseases, and CNS neoplasia, tissues harvested from experimental animal models, and cell cultures. The core will provide neuropathological evaluation, study design and data interpretation, and microscopy services including Laser Capture Microdissection (LCM) accessioning of tissue samples and nucleic acid extraction for downstream molecular biological applications and two-photon (2P) excitation microscopy of cells and tissues for high resolution microscopic analysis. These services will assist investigators in the neuroAIDS community with histopatholgical analysis and translational studies. The core will also provide the necessary training to the investigators and their staff to gain the proficiency needed to independently conduct any of the routine core functions.
This core will assist researchers studying AIDS and brain disorders to utilize animal models for evaluating therapeutics and behavioral tests for improving treatments diagnosis and prevention. Moreover, this core will provide services to researchers in analyzing human samples and animal tissues for improving diagnosis of disease and understanding the mechanism involved in the pathogenesis of neuroAIDS.
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