SciLifeLab The Svedberg seminar series 2014-02-03

Ronald Deumens

Université Catholique de Louvain, Institute of Neuroscience, Pole CEMO, Group of Neuropharmacology, Brussels, Belgium

The focus of Dr. Deumens’s research has been primarily in the scientific arena of nerve lesions and neuropathic outcomes, since his postdoctoral period with a main interest in pain. He also has a particular interest in the role of neuroplasticity and glial cells in neuropathic pain. In his career he acquired extensive knowledge on many rodent models of neurotrauma, behavioral testing paradigms, cell-culture and cell-transplantation techniques, drug delivery, biochemical, molecular and histological techniques. He published 46 papers and more than 50 abstracts. He is currently a mentor of two post-graduate fellows and co-supervised two completed PhD projects.

“Investigations into the mechanisms underlying the transition from acute to chronic pain: focus on innate immune cells in the spinal cord”


Chronic pain is one of the most debilitating conditions known to man-kind and it is resistant to most contemporary pharmacological treatments. Elucidating the mechanisms that underlie the transition from acute to chronic pain will help identifying targets for prevention of chronic pain. With a multidisciplinary team consisting of neuroscienstists, pharmacologists and pain physicians we have designed, on the basis of clinical predictors of chronic postoperative pain, animal experiments to study the role of the innate immune system in the spinal cord in pain chronification. Particularly in response to peripheral nerve injury, microglia and astrocytic cells in the dorsal horn show a highly persistent state of activation that is of key importance to the severity and duration of pain. Currently, we explore immune modulatory treatments that target these spinal innate immune cells and our investigations have shown very promising data, which will be highlighted in the seminar.

Host: Elena Kozlova

Organizer SciLifeLab