Self-introduction Yu

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Disaster Medical Science
Disaster Psychiatry
Zhiqian YU (Assist. Prof.)


Research summary

Glial cells maintain homeostasis of the central nervous system (CNS) and have many immunological properties such as signal transduction, secretion of cytokines, and provision of neurotrophic factors. Under pathological conditions, peripheral immune cells (e.g., monocytes, macrophages, and T cells) can infiltrate the CNS. This situation can induce pro-inflammatory factors and the antigen presentation process, which further involves glial cells or neurons and results in the development and progression of a mental illness. Here we use clinical specimens, animal models, and cell lines to develop an innovative research field that deals with the microendophenotype at the molecular level in accordance with the psychoneuroimmunological perspective on psychiatry, brain function, and immune function. This research field includes studies of glial cells and peripheral immune cells: the goal is to determine if their interactions are involved in the pathogenesis of psychiatric disorders. Our attention has been focused on the disaster-related post-traumatic stress disorder as well as mood disorders and schizophrenia. Using microarray analysis and next-generation sequencing technologies, we try to understand the molecular mechanisms underlying psychiatric disorders and the effects of therapeutic agents on the prevention and recovery. Our work is expected to lead to the development of new methods of diagnosis and treatment of psychiatric disorders.