For Dementia Action Week, Kitty Murphy, second year PhD student at the UK DRI Centre at Imperial, shares the complex nature of Alzheimer’s disease and why there’s more to it than just our genes.
Dementia diagnosis rates are dropping for the first time ever. I wish I could tell you that this is due to less people developing dementia, and not because more people are living with it undiagnosed. According to research carried out by Alzheimer’s Society, many people are not being diagnosed due to the misconception that memory loss is a normal part of aging. However, memory loss is often an early sign of dementia, particularly in the most common cause known as Alzheimer’s disease. As a result, the Alzheimer’s Society’s Dementia Action Week, an annual awareness campaign, has made diagnosis their featured theme.
Master’s student Emre Yavuz reflects on the highs and lows of taking part in a virtual hackathon – from designing an app to predict the risk of Dementia to pitching to 16 judges!
During lockdown I came across a post about a virtual hackathon called ‘Code to Care’, focusing on finding sustainable healthtech solutions which was run by Imperial College Business School. Having worked with Virtual Reality for my undergraduate dissertation, I knew there was something I could bring to this event! Through a Zoom speed-dating event during the hackathon, I connected with three other like-minded individuals who were all interested in using mobile technology to help lessen the burden of the lives of those stricken by Dementia.
We had decided to focus creating an app to help predict one’s risk of Dementia and monitor their disease progression, and had just three days to make our final pitch as convincing as possible in just two minutes. Based on the research suggesting a potential correlation between gait patterns and cognitive decline, we felt that focusing our app on the use of gait analysis would be a fruitful venture. (more…)
Dr Luke Whiley, a researcher at Imperial’s UK Dementia Research Institute, is taking on this year’s London Marathon, all in aid of Dementia Revolution.
To coincide with the launch of the UK Dementia Research Institute (UK DRI), the Alzheimer’s Society and Alzheimer’s Research UK have partnered with the Virgin London Marathon to create the Dementia Revolution – a year-long campaign to raise awareness of dementia and the ongoing research that is happening throughout the UK. As a research associate based at the Imperial UK DRI, I will be running the marathon as a representative of the centre and its research.
I have always been a keen runner, but have never completed a marathon. When the opportunity arose to promote the exciting work happening throughout the DRI and to be a part of the Dementia Revolution at the iconic London marathon, I was very eager to get involved. The experience has been very important for me, as I have met many other Dementia Revolution runners at both outreach and training events, and talking to them, hearing their story of how dementia has affected them personally, has further emphasised the importance of the research that I am doing within the UK DRI. (more…)