The Epigenetics of Trauma
Seeking Novel Markers for Diagnostics and Treatment Response
Trauma-induced disorders are usually marked in individuals directly exposed but strikingly, they can also affect their offspring sometimes across generations.
This project, at the frontier between epigenetics and molecular psychiatry, aims to study how childhood trauma can influence mental and physical health across generations.
Can Botox Beat the Blues?
Treating Depression with Botulinum Toxin
Recently, studies demonstrated that persons suffering from depression benefited from a one-time botulinum toxin A (BTA) injection in the forehead.
However, these studies are unable to answer the question of how BTA exerts its antidepressant effect. Thus project seeks to unravel the mechanism(s) behind the effect in order to establish efficacy and safety for therapeutic applications.
Making Sense of Our Senses
Sensory Contributions to Cognition in Neuro-developmental Disorders
There is a growing recognition of the interdependency between the integrity of sensory systems (e.g. seeing, hearing, touch) and their mutual interplay with cognitive functions, in typical development but especially in individuals with neuro-developmental disorders.
This new framework is dramatically changing the ways in which such disorders are both diagnosed and treated.
PERTH - MAPS
What's so Special about You?
MAPS (Medicine, Advocacy, Patients, Science) Project
The diagnosis and treatment of people with treatment resistant anxiety and mood disorders, using available prescribed medications, continues to be largely a “hit or miss” process, with wide ranging and variable individual outcomes.
While genetic testing has been available for a decade or more, its clinical relevance, for the treatment of anxiety and mood disorders, has not been broadly recognised in practice. This project seeks to confirm the clinical relevance of the MyDNA pharmacogenetics test for people with treatment resistant anxiety and mood disorders.
PERTH - rTMS
How Magnets Move the Mind
rTMS (Repetitive Trans-cranial Magnetic Stimulation)
A promising and emerging alternative to medication is neuromodulation in the form of Repetitive Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (rTMS), which alters brain activity and connectivity, and subsequently changes behaviours or thoughts.
This research will study the effects of rTMS on the brain, integrating studies of single cells, defined circuits and behavioural outcomes, to understand how brain plasticity can be harnessed to treat depression.
PERTH - GLAD
Getting a better fit for your genes
GLAD (Genetics Linked to Anti-Depressants)
Using pharmacogenomics (PG) (the study of how a person’s genetic make-up influences how they metabolise medication), the trial will analyse whether PG-guided treatment is more effective than today’s widely adopted ‘trial and error’ approach.