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Nikolaos Venizelos is a professor emeritus and docent in biomedicine with a focus in clinical chemistry at the School of Health and Medical Sciences, Örebro University. He has a Medicine Doctor's degree (PhD-in medicine) at the Karolinska Institute, where he worked until 2001.
Venizelos has established the Neuropsychiatric Research Laboratory at the Dept. of Clinical medicine. His research work is focused on the membrane transport of the amino acids tyrosine and tryptophan in schizophrenia and related disorders such as bipolar, autism and ADHD. Tyrosine and tryptophan are the building stones (so-called precursors) for dopamine and serotonin, the brain's most important neurotransmitters, necessary for central nervous system. The research conducted in Neuropsychiatric Research Laboratory is leading both nationally and internationally.
Nikolaos Venizelos and his research group has in a number of studies (see publications), demonstrated that membrane transport of tyrosine and tryptophan is strongly involved in the pathophysiology of schizophrenia, bipolar and autism disorders. Recent studies shows that even ADHD, probably, have an influence on the regulation of dopamine and serotonin turnover in the brain. The research group has also developed and demonstrated that the so-called fibroblast model, a human cellular in vitro technic, among other, excludes the external influences of medications and other environmental factors that make it suitable for studying amino acid transport in neuropsychiatric disorders.
Furthermore, the research lab disposes a unique biobank, with primary fibroblast lines from patients with different neuropsychiatric diseases, osteoporosis and matched controls, which are used as model systems for studying, among other things, the transport mechanism of tyrosine and tryptophan in neuropsychiatric disorders.
Venizelos ' current research focuses on identifying the pro-inflammatory cytokines and environmental toxins (harmful industrial chemicals) role on the membrane transport of tyrosine and tryptophan in neuropsychiatric disorders, and In co-operation with NGBI-Research Centre, to identified the influence of probiotics and short-chain fatty acids like butyrate, on the functionality of tryptophan transport, which is a precursor to the neurotransmitter serotonin.
Research Article: J Neuropsychopharmacol Mental Health
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