Nino Sharikadze, a graduate of the doctoral program of Ilia State University, will read a public lecture on the topic “Regulation of steroid hormones in the adrenal gland by the Sigma-1 receptor” within the framework of the “Alumni Talks” project of the International Doctoral School on October 3, at 14:00.

About the lecture

Stress is a well-known risk factor in the development of addiction and addiction relapse vulnerability. Stress leads to changes in corticotropin-releasing factor in the brain, which in turn impact drug addiction. Moreover, stress is argued to impact all three stages of the addiction cycle – excessive drinking/intoxication, withdrawal/negative effect and preoccupation/anticipation -exposing the animal to an emotional allostatic load and state that forms the growing motivational pathology of addiction.

Sigma 1 receptor (Sig-1R) is a chaperone protein on mitochondria-associated endoplasmic reticulum ER membranes (MAMs) which, by interacting with inositol 1,4,5-triphosphate receptor (IP3R), affects the transport of Ca 2+ between the ER and mitochondria. Sig-1R is overexpressed in the central nervous system and brain regions involved in emotion and neuropsychiatric disorders and agonists are a class of drugs for the treatment of depression and anxiety. Preclinical studies have shown that targeting Sig-1R alone is sufficient to produce an antidepressant-like effect. This effect has also been demonstrated in preclinical trials in humans, in which Sig-1R agonists exhibited a strong antidepressant effect. Based on all of the above, the aim of the research is to study the role of Sig-1R in stress and stress response molecular mechanisms, as well as the release and synthesis of stress hormones (e.g., corticosterone) from the adrenal gland.

About the speaker

In 2013, Nino Sharikadze was awarded a master’s degree in Biopharmacy from Ilia State University. In 2018, she successfully defended her PhD thesis at the Faculty of Natural Sciences and Engineering and became PhD in Molecular Biotechnology and Biochemistry. Her PhD thesis was about “Flavonoid Nobiletin’s Action on Mitochondrial Bioenergetics”. She published 2 articles in high-impact refereed journals during her PhD.

In 2015-2016 Nino Sharikadze participated in the MID Erasmus Mundus exchange program between the University of Bordeaux and Ilia State University, where she did part of her PhD research in Cell Energy Metabolism Laboratory (Bordeaux, France).

From 2013 to 2019, she worked as a researcher at Institute of Chemical Biology of Ilia State University. From 2019 she became a postdoctoral fellow at Integrative Neuroscience Branch, Cellular Pathobiology Section, NIDA, National Institutes of Health.

Time: October 3, 14:00

Location: Auditorium T 102, Technology Building (Cholokashvili Ave. N3/5)

Working language: Georgian

Attendance is free.

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