Research interest and grants.
Veronique Miron obtained her PhD in 2009 in Neurological Sciences from McGill University (Canada), funded by studentships from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council and the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, and was awarded the European Charcot Foundation Young Investigator Award. Following a brief postodoc in Neuroimmunology at the Montreal Neurological Institute, she carried out a postdoc in Regenerative Medicine at The Scottish Centre for Regenerative Medicine, funded by the Multiple Sclerosis Society of Canada. In 2014, she was appointed as Lecturer in the MRC Centre for Reproductive Health and is currently an MRC/ MS Society career development fellow.
Veronique’s research focuses on investigating the regenerative properties of inflammation to drive central nervous system white matter regeneration, with implications for neurological disorders with high worldwide prevalence (such as cerebral palsy and MS). She has >12 years of research experience in regenerative medicine, myelin biology and neuroimmunology, including proficiency developing and applying in vitro/ ex vivo/ in vivo modelling of neurological disease, transgenic approaches, advanced imaging platforms, high through-put imaging/analysis, and neuropathological analysis. She has authored 23 publications, including 6 first-author peer-reviewed manuscripts (including in Nature Neuroscience and Annals of Neurology) and 10 invited review articles/ book chapters/ editorial, cited 1500 times.
Cerebral palsy is a lifelong disorder with no cure, incurred perinatally and characterized by severe motor impairments. The main contributor to the development of cerebral palsy is brain injury incurred in preterm and full-term infants, directed primarily at white matter (myelin) and the cells that make myelin, cells of the oligodendrocyte lineage. Current treatments aim to dampen injury and are only marginally effective at improving deficits due to their inability to promote myelin repair. Thus, there is a pressing need for the development of therapies for cerebral palsy that promote this repair thereby rescuing clinical deficits.
The research group is taking a novel approach to doing this by harnessing the regenerative properties of inflammation, in particular, macrophages (including CNS-resident microglia). Although macrophages have traditionally been implicated in inducing central nervous system injury, our recent studies show that anti-inflammatory macrophages drive myelin regeneration in the adult brain. Our overarching goal is to build on these findings to develop new strategies to promote myelin generation following developmental brain injury, by manipulating macrophage activation and identifying the regenerative factors they produce.
The main areas of research of our group are:
- To characterize the role of microglia/ macrophage activation in perinatal brain injury & repair,
- To elucidate the cellular and molecular mechanisms regulating microglia/ macrophage activation following injury and during repair of the central nervous system,
- To compare the inflammatory and regenerative mechanisms following injury in developing vs adult central nervous system (e.g. MS),
- To discover novel therapeutic targets by identifying microglia/ macrophage-derived regenerative factors.
Follow the Miron lab’s research interests and progress on twitter
- Miron VE. PhD studentship from the UK Multiple Sclerosis Society, ‘Identification of novel microglia-derived therapeutic targets for remyelination’, £94,725, 2017-2020.
- Miron VE. Centre for Drug Research and Development/ MS Society of Canada, ‘Promoting oligodendrocyte progenitor cell differentiation to treat Progressive MS’. 2016.
- Miron VE. MRC/ MS Society Career Development Award, ‘Targeting activin receptors as a novel approach to promote myelin repair in the central nervous system’, £1,494,847. 2015-2020.
- Miron VE, Norman JE, Gressens P. Action Medical Research, “Novel strategies to drive CNS repair following perinatal brain injury”, £199,356. 2015-2018.
- Miron VE and ffrench-Constant C, Biogen Idec, ‘Identification of novel remyelination factors from microglia’, 2014-2017.
- Miron VE, BBSRC-GSK CASE studentship & grant, ‘Assessment of immunomodulatory compounds in driving macrophage activation in models of myelin injury and repair’, £96,126. 2014-2018.
- Miron VE, RS MacDonald Trust project grant, ‘Harnessing the regenerative properties of inflammation to develop novel strategies for paediatric brain repair in cerebral palsy’, £60,000. 2014-2017.
Current lab members
- Claire Davies (Post-doctoral fellow)
- Alessandra Dillenburg (PhD student)
- Neil Fullerton (MSc student)
- Rebecca Holloway (technician)
- Graeme Ireland (senior technician/ lab manager)
- Amy Lloyd (PhD Student)
- Irene Molina-Gonzalez (PhD Student)
- Miron VE, Boyd A, Zhao JW, Yuen TJ, Ruckh JM, Shadrach JL, vWijngaarden AJ, Wajers AJ, Williams A, Franklin RJM, ffrench-Constant C (2013). M2 microglia/ macrophages drive oligodendrocyte differentiation during CNS remyelination. Nature Neuroscience. 16(9):1211-1218.
- Davies C, Miron VE. Distinct origins, gene expression and function of microglia and monocyte-derived macrophages in CNS myelin injury and regeneration (2016). Clinical Immunology. Review. S1521-6616(16) 30142-30145.
- Lloyd AF, Miron VE. Cellular and molecular mechanisms underpinning macrophage activation during remyelination (2016) Frontiers in Cell and Developmental Biology (Molecular Medicine). Review for Special topic: Revisiting neuroinflammation in myelin damage and repair: new molecular and cellular players. Jun 21;4:60. doi: 10.3389/fcell.2016.00060. eCollection 2016
- Yuen TJ, Johnson KR, Miron VE, Zhao C, Quandt J, McFarland HF, Franklin RJM, ffrench-Constant C (2013) Identification of endothelin-2 as an inflammatory factor that promotes CNS remyelination. Brain. 136, 1035-1047.
- Miron VE, Jung CG, Kim HJ, Kennedy TE, Soliven B, Antel JP (2008) FTY720 modulates human oligodendrocyte progenitor process extension and survival. Ann. Neurol. 63, 61-71.
- Kuhlmann T, Miron VE, Cui Q, Wegner C, Antel J, Brück W (2008) Differentiation block of oligodendroglial progenitor cells as a cause for remyelination failure in chronic multiple sclerosis. Brain. 131, 1749-1758.