NeuroTalks: Novel Insights into Alzheimer’s Disease

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Our first Neurotalks event of the term got off to a great start at the Panton Arms! Thank you everyone for the overwhelming attendance. We will be looking to increase the size of the room for our next set of talks! Over 50 people came to see talks by Dr. Claire Durrant (née Harwell), Research Associate in Clinical Neurosciences, Dr Eliajh Mak, Research Associate in Psychiatry and David Howett, PhD Candidate in Psychiatry on their research into Alzheimer’s disease. The informal talks allowed these researchers to share their preliminary data from their current projects with the cambridge neuroscience community and showed us the the wide ranging methods in which we can study such diseases.

AB amyloid, Tau pathologies, brain structure, and cognition abnormalities according to clinical disease stage

Claire demonstrated the use of her organotypic brain slice cultures in studying the mechanisms of protein accumulation, and Eliajh presented the application of  neuroimaging techniques to investigate biomarkers in Alzheimer’s brains with both talks having interesting implications for the role of Tau and beta-Amyloid.

David’s spacial navigation tasks using virtual reality head-sets were then able to show the differences in performance between control and Alzheimer’s groups, with the potential for use as a fun interactive diagnostic tool.

A lot of engaging questions were asked during the talk and the researchers addressed them brilliantly. Afterwards there was the chance to have a cozy discussion and mingle with our speakers over a pint.

We always appreciate new ideas for talks and speakers so get in touch if you would like to present at future Neurotalks!

Future topics include: Ethics in the Neuropsychology of Gambling (is it gaming? Or is still in discussion?), Repairing the Injured Brain, and the Science of Love!  We look forward to seeing you there.

Article written by Monica Killen – Junior Treasurer

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