Research Groups

Meet our Research Teams

AMBROSIAC is a multidisciplinary Europe wide project comprising of groups of researchers in University College Cork, Ireland, German Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases (DZNE), Bonn, Germany, NUTRIM School of Nutrition and translational Research in Metabolism, University of Maastricht, The Netherlands, Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique, University Bordeaux, France, Department of Neuroscience, University of Florence, Italy and Kings College London, University of Cambridge, UK.

Cork, Ireland

Partner 1 – Cork/UCC, Ireland

Principal Investigators:                         

Prof. John F. Cryan

Prof Ted G. Dinan

Dr Harriet Schellekens

Prof Catherine Stanton

Dr Gerard Clarke


Dr. Marcus Boehme

The AMBROSIAC team in Ireland,  Professor John Cryan, Professor Timothy Dinan, Professor Catherine Stanton, Dr. Gerard Clarke and Dr. Harriet Schellekens have recently been awarded key research funding under the umbrella of the JPI HDHL Joint Call "Nutrition and Cognitive Function"  investigating how diet through stress-related mechanisms affects cognition across the lifespan using clinical and preclinical approaches.

Diet and nutritional habits significantly impact on brain fitness, mental and cognitive health throughout the lifespan. Chronic stress has been shown to negatively impact brain plasticity and cognitive performance, in particular in the ageing brain. Interestingly, the aged brain resembles the stressed brain on both behavioural and cellular levels and stress-induced cognitive alterations are likely to be more marked in the elderly.

The aged brain is particularly vulnerable to stress-induced cognitive decline and will benefit tremendously from mechanistically-oriented dietary interventions to attenuate such cognitive impairment and to provide a general boost on brain health. Moreover, cognitive decline is increasingly present in the ageing population, who are living with chronic diseases and subject to elevated levels of psychological stress, which are both huge challenges for the EU economy and society.

AMBROSIAC will unravel the direct effects of dietary components, nutritional status, metabolism and the impact of the gut microbiome on cognitive function (i.e., memory and executive function) and how this interaction is modified through stress and ageing

Bordeaux, France

Partner 2 – Bordeaux/INRA, France

Principal Investigators:                         

Dr. Lucile Capuron

Dr. Sophie Layé

Dr. Guillaume Ferreira

Dr. Veronique Pallet

PhD student:   

Essi Biyong

Bonn, Germany


Partner 3 – Bonn/DZNE, Germany

Principal Investigator:

Prof. Monique Breteler

Research manager:

Dr. Antonio Schmandke


Dr. Aparna Schweitzer

PhD student:                    

Sadia Oumohand

Florence, Italy

Partner 4 – Florence/NEUROFARBA, Italy

Principal Investigators:                           

Prof. Beatrice Passani

Prof Patrizio Blandina


Dr. Gustavo Provensi

PhD student:

Alessia Costa

Maastricht, The Netherlands

Partner 5 – Maastricht/NUTRIM, The Netherlands

Principal Investigators:  

Prof. Annemie Schols

Dr. Harry Gosker

PhD students:    

Sarah Mount                               

Martijn van Beers

London, UK

Partner 6 – London/KCL, UK

Principal Investigators: 

Prof. Carmine Pariante

Dr. Patricia Zunszain


Dr. Alessandra Borsini

PhD student:

Shashi Dissanayake