The CNR’s Research Unit of Magnetoencephalography for biomedical applications (MEG-BioApp) is located in Naples at the Hermitage Capodimonte Clinic. MEG-BioApp is the result of a scientific agreement among the Institute of Applied Sciences and Intelligent Systems of CNR (ISASI-CNR), the University of Naples Parthenope and Hermitage Capodimonte.
Magnetoencephalography (MEG) is a non-invasive neurophysiologic technique that measures the magnetic fields generated by the neuronal activity using ultra high sensitivity quantum sensors (superconducting quantum inference devices, SQUIDs). MEG is a purely passive method, i.e. a completely non-invasive measurement requiring no contrast agent, magnetic field or x-ray. MEG allows direct measurement of neural oscillations. The extremely high temporal resolution of MEG allows for an assessment of brain activity on a timescale not accessible to other brain functional imaging methods, i.e. Single-Photon Emission Computed Tomography (SPECT), Positron Emission Tomography (PET), or functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI). This is particularly important given the evidence that neural oscillations might represent an intrinsic physiological process by which communication among neurons occurs. Compared to Electroencephalography (EEG), MEG offers a better source localization, due to the reduced signal distortion. In fact, MEG measurements are not distorted or attenuated by the insulating layers such as the skull, tissues or anatomical open spaces as in the EEG.
The Unit addresses the interdisciplinary study of neurological syndromes such as preclinical phase of dementia (MCI), Alzheimer’s disease, frontotemporal dementia, Parkinson disease, autism spectrum disorders (ASD), amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and migraine.
The aim is to use magnetoencephalography to select biomarkers to monitor progression of diseases and to foster our understanding of the pathophysiology of neurodegeneration.
Head of URT