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Cluster Members & Research Interests in Healthy Ageing

Ageing Mind Cluster


Jennifer Geraghty (PhD student)
Interested in mobility changes in older age: neuropsychological, neurophysiological and cognitive predictors of successful adaptation in real world scenarios

Dr Eric Hill
My research involves the use of stem cell derived neuronal networks to model various aspects of the brain.  I have a number of projects that relate to understanding the Ageing mind.  The models developed in these projects will allow us to understand the fundamental cellular process the underpin diseases such as AD in an in vitro system that will allow basic biological questions to be tested as well as novel compounds that may interrupt the disease process. Our major project is the ‘Engineering neural networks’ BBSRC LOLA grant.

Dr Carol Holland
My research throughout my career has largely been focussed on aspects of the Psychology of Ageing. The psychology of ageing is necessarily a field that crosses a number of sub-disciplines within psychology, with significant links to non-psychological disciplines, notably medicine and other health related fields, and social policy. Within this, there have been two key foci to my research: road user psychology and cognitive psychology, and I also have a developing reputation in health psychology of older age. 

Professor Klaus Kessler 
I am generally interested in understanding the effect of ageing on cognitive processing and its neural underpinning. I am pursuing two main research questions, with one strand of research investigating how working memory, executive function and attention change with age. Basic research in the lab by means of behavioural and neuroimaging experiments, using predominantly Magnetoencephalography (MEG) and transcranial magnetic (TMS) and electric (tACS, tDCS) stimulation, will be corroborated in more realistic virtual reality (VR) settings, using, for instance, ARCHA’s driving simulator (in collaboration with Dr Carol Holland). The second research strand will investigate embodied cognition in the sense of how cognitive processes are grounded in neural representations of our body, i.e., in action and proprioception systems. With age body agility changes and this might impact directly on the embodied underpinnings of cognition and social interaction. Again, neuroimaging and VR techniques will be employed to investigate this hypothesis. Ultimately the goal of both research strands will be to understand the effect of ageing on important cognitive and social processes, allowing us to make flexible training recommendations to retain cognitive function and to identify biomarkers of age-related cognitive deterioration such as forms of dementia.

Dr Joanna Lumsden
My research interest is in developing mobile assistive technologies – not specifically for aging, but for any number of different “impairments”.  I am currently supervising a PhD (Lilit Hakobyan) who is researching adaptive technologies for individuals with age related macular degeneration.

Dr.H.Rheinallt Parri
One of my research interests is Alzheimer’s Disease and in my lab we currently conduct electrophysiological recordings and calcium imaging experiments to investigate cellular mechanisms neuronal mechanisms which are affected by exposure to beta amyloid.
 
Dr Nathan Ridout
I am interested in the role of executive functioning in autobiographical memory in older adults, which I pursue with my colleague Dr Carol Holland. We are currently looking at methods of training autobiographical memory function, with a view to improving psychological health and well-being. I am also planning to look at facial emotion recognition (FER) and social functioning in older adults. Specifically, I am interested in whether it is possible to improve FER in certain participant groups, including older adults, using cognitive training methods.

Professor Georgina Rippon
I have been working with the MEG research team to explore ways of harnessing the temporal resolution of this technique to the spatial resolution possible with functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI). This allows us to explore classic cognitive neuroscience problems in, for example, linguistic processing, learning and memory and affect-cognition interactions and to track the spatiotemporal dynamics of the underlying neuronal networks.

Dr Cristina Romani
Interested in the assessment and rehabilitation of language and memory difficulties following a stroke and degenerative diseases.  She is currently involved in projects involving the rehabilitation of post-stroke difficulties in producing the right sounds (phonology) of words in Italy and in the UK.

Kim C Ronnqvist (PhD student)
PhDNeurodegenerative diseases, behaviour, underlying molecular and cellular mechanisms to physiology and pathology

Ian M Stanford
Interested in cellular and synaptic studies related to PD and other movement disorders

Marta A Tarczyluk (PhD student)
Interested in the use of neural networks to study Alzheimer’s.  My PhD involves the application of aggregated AB1-42 to these cultures in order to study its effects on cellular metabolism. 

Erin Tse (PhD Student)
My PhD involves genetically modifying the neurons derived from these cultures with Lentivirus in order to express mutated forms of Amyloid precursor protein to investigate the effects of endogenous overexpression.  This project will hopefully shed light on the early processes that occur in AD and tell us how these cells sicken and die.  
 

 

Updated February 2014 

Employable Graduates; Exploitable Research