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The Future of Brain Health 
Decoding the brain through research

HERMES project participated to the Brain Awareness Week 2022 by holding an interactive workshop “The Future of Brain Health. Decoding the brain through research” with students of the Institut International Saint-Dominiquein Rome. The event was organized in collaboration between consortium partner Eurokleis srl, project coordinator the Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia and Dana Foundation , promoting the importance of the knowledge of this fascinating and partly unknown organ, the brain, and how science impacts on searching for new cures.

Eurokleis srl is HERMES consortium partner responsible for communication and outreach activities: in their role as innovation manager, they contribute to the activities that increase the visibility and dissemination of the project’s outcomes, including communication with the public and the media. During the Brain Awareness Week 2022, Eurokleis organized a workshop with students aged between 14 and 17 years of an international school in Rome, the Institut International Saint-Dominique, in collaboration with HERMES project coordinator Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia and Dana Foundation . Students learned about importance of scientific research and the most recent discoveries concerning the brain in the clinical and therapeutic field. 

The workshop "The Future of Brain Health. Decoding the brain through research" took place on Wednesday 16 March 2022. It was evaluated of great success among the professors and the 40 young participants. We are pleased to report Gabriella Panuccio, DM, PhD, neuroscientist, HERMES project coordinator and responsible for the "Enhanced Regenerative Medicine" research line at Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia, joined the event in remote connection from Genoa to introduce the anatomy of the brain and its functioning, the neurons and the electrical impulses communication, and a brief presentation of the HERMES research project objectives for the treatment of epilepsy.

The study and treatment of brain disorders represent a challenge for contemporary science, which requires an increasingly interdisciplinary approach, both to understand the functioning of brain cells, neurons, and to identify effective methods for the restoration of brain areas damaged due to neurodegenerative diseases, trauma, stroke, or epilepsy. HERMES project aims to study a new strategy to treat epilepsy, aiming at the regeneration of damaged brain tissue and the training of neurons to a correct functioning through the combined use of biological and artificial components.

In the second part of the workshop Dr. Isabella Fiume, psychologist and promoter of the initiative with the students, presented the laboratory activities for the creation of some handcrafted gadgets (hemispheres hats, neurons created with colored pipe brushes) and some entertaining resources based on scientifically reviewed puzzles and fact-sheets about the brain made available by the Institut International Saint-Dominique for educators and teachers.
Mr David Saury, Physics Chemistry Digital Science & Technology teacher, and Anne Lambersend, head of the school's Infirmary joined the workshop. All participants engaged with the proposed activities and commented very positively on the initiative.

The Institut International Saint-Dominique in Rome, is a school of the group International Odyssey, approved by the Ministry of National Education French and recognized as a Partner School of the AEFE (Agency of French Schools Abroad). The structure offers an excellent education and multilingual teaching (French, Italian, English) from pre-kindergarten to high school. The learning environment has an essential role in the development and realization of each student; spaces are designed to promote the excellence, curiosity, creativity and well-being of the whole school community.