5 Brain Research Projects awarded funding

5 Brain Research Projects awarded funding
23rd May 2017 RIDT

Last December, the RIDT, in collaboration with the Malta Neuroscience Network within the University, issued a call for proposals for small brain research projects following a fund-raising campaign held in 2016. Upon closing time we had received 9 proposals from academics coming from 6 different faculties.

An ad hoc evaluation advisory board was set up, consisting of Prof. Richard Muscat, Prof. Helen Grech, Dr. Norbert Vella and RIDT CEO Wilfred Kenely. The board also sought the opinion of leading neuroscientist Prof. Giacomo Rizzolatti from the University of Parma, as an external advisor. The board looked at the projects and evaluated them on the basis of these criteria:

  1. Scientific Excellence
  2. Quality of proposal
  3. Interdisciplinarity
  4. Impact

The evaluation advisory board recommends the following projects for funding:
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PROJECT TITLE

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LEAD INVESTIGATOR

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FACULTY

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The Genetics of Autism Spectrum Disorder Dr. Stephanie Bezzina Wettinger Health Sciences
Cerebellar speading depression in triggering episodes of ataxia Prof. Mauro Pessia Medicine
The role of the Endocannabinoids in Absence Epilepsy Prof. Giuseppe DiGiovanni Medicine
Machine learning and signal processing techniques in epileptic seizures Dr Lalit Garg ICT
Intercranial stereo-EEG analysis during grasping movement and intent Prof. Kenneth Camilleri Engineering

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The fund-raising campaign consisted of a number of events and initiatives such as:

  • INCONTRI art exhibition
  • 2016 Easter Sunday Concert
  • Payment gateway scheme
  • Bohemia Saxophone Quartet Concert
  • Individual donations