It is the largest research centre on the subject of ageing and It will function as an all-round scientific laboratory. 350 experts from different disciplines, social, biomedical and technological, will be at work to design how our society must change as the population ages.
On Friday 15 September with the official presentation (11 a.m., Florence, Aula Magna of the University and online) the AGE-IT programme begins, as it is called, dedicated to the consequences and challenges of ageing.
AGE-IT to be precise is an Extended Partnership, i.e. one of the investment lines envisaged by the Ministry of Universities and Research within the National Recovery and Resilience Plan (PNRR): the programme is dedicated, precisely, to a new public-private alliance to meet the challenge of an inexorably ageing society. AGE-IT can count on funding of over 114 million euro. The University of Florence leads the programme, with a team of 27 partners, including universities, research centres, industries, and organisations. SISSA is one of them.
SISSA's activities for AGE-IT
All components of SISSA Neuroscience Area participate in the extended AGE-IT partnership funded by the PNRR with two projects. One is dedicated to the study of the protective factors of human population ageing and is aimed at explaining individual differences starting from the cognitive reserve construct. The underlying idea is that education, work and lifestyle can help counteract the cognitive decline effects of ageing.
The second project, built on an animal model, the zebrafish, aims to study the molecular and cellular mechanisms involved in the cognitive ageing process. The focus is on changes in synaptic integrity related to the decline of complex behavioural functions, combining physiological ageing with stress factors, such as fear and anxiety, and studying the impact of these variables also through machine learning and information theory tools.
AGE-IT is a national programme with a strong interdisciplinary aspiration and forms the basis for the construction of a national observatory on ageing through the realisation and sharing of data from the life and social sciences. Its mission is therefore crucial in an ageing country like Italy.
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