Spotlight on Brain disorders

From ictus to depression, schizophrenia or autism, there are several associated diseases to this organ. The Brain Awareness Week is a global campaign to foster public enthusiasm and show support for brain science. It is celebrated worldwide every March, with lots of activities in different communities that share the impact of their work as well as the latest advances in the field. 

There are various research groups at Xartec Salut working in the neuroscience area, studying the system and developing new solutions to these diseases that afect around 165 million Europeans according to the European Commission. It is estimated that 1 in 3 people will suffer from a neurological and or psychiatric disorder at some point in their lives.

Epidemiology of Mental Health Disorders and Ageing led by Josep Maria Haro (IRSJD) is one of them. This interdisciplinary group includes psychiatrists, psychologists, statisticians, sociologists and basic researchers examining the factors that protect against or increase the risk of mental health conditions, exploring the therapeutic options for people with such diseases. The group’s aim is to strengthen both preventive and therapeutic strategies.

Judit Usall (IRSJD)  is at the front of Etiopathogenesis and treatment of severe mental disorders (MERITT) research group. MERITT  is composed by a multidisciplinary team which scope is broad and includes from generic expression factors to psicosocial interventions. MERITT is part of Salut Mental CIBER (CIBERSAM) financed by Institut Carlos III and it is a consolidated research group by Generalitat of Catalonia. The group’s main research areas are severe mental disorder clinical bases (cognitives and psychosocial), mental health interventions, mental disorders in childhood and teenage and molecular Psychiatry. 

Research Group on Health Technologies and Results in Primary Care and Mental Health (PRISMA) is coordinated by Antoni Serrano (IRSJD). PRISMA conducts research into the design and evaluation of new technologies and health services, with a special focus on primary and community care and mental health. Their focal point is on health economics including exploring preventive strategies and pharmacological, non-pharmacological treatments for mental health disorders and other chronic diseases that are either extremely prevalent or have a major social impact. They also evaluate the health impact of population interventions, policies or access to resources, and the use of health and social services. The results of these studies can be used in health service planning, economic management and to establish health policies.

eHealth Lab, led by Carme Carrion (UOC) has recently launched a project to develop an assessment tool for applications against depression. A way to help professionals and users to determine which applications can be more useful in order to manage their health problems on a day-to-day basis and, at the same time, provide more data in real time and conditions to help those professionals follow the evolution and process of each person affected by depression. eHealth Lab is an interdisciplinary research group that focuses its activity on the design, implementation and evaluation of different digital solutions that seek to improve the effectiveness, efficiency and security of different interventions, targeting health professionals, patients and healthy citizens. One of the group’s key objectives is to promote health and prevent illness through the use of digital solutions.


This project is co-funded by the European Union through the European Regional Development Fund (FEDER, Fondo Europeo de Desarrollo Regional).