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Research interests

Angela heads the Alzheimer's disease RNA biomarker group that is part of a wider Alzheimer's disease blood biomarker programme at the Institue of Psychiatry, headed by Professor Simon Lovestone.

The team aims to establish a robust panel of blood molecules within the next five years that together form a high performance biomarker, enabling early Alzheimer's disease diagnosis and a way to accurately assess the rate of disease progression. A simple blood test for Alzheimer’s disease will ultimately enable personalised treatment strategies of individual patient response to treatments as they become available and enable treatment to begin at the earliest stage of disease where the greatest benefits can be achieved. It will also enable the effects of lifestyle and environmental factors to be monitored, which could lead to new health advice on how to prevent or slow progression of the disease.

In addition, the efficiency of a blood test would allow more drugs to be evaluated in clinical trials, thus increasing the chances of identifying and developing a desperately needed effective treatment for Alzheime's disease. Furthermore, this research could also have wider applications to other neurodegenerative disease, such as motor neurone disease and Parkinson's disease, where common proteins to those implicated in Alzheimer's disease are thought to be important in disease pathology.

Angela has also recently begun a pilot study to look for new ways to develop a treatment for Huntington's disease. She is investigating how Dictyostelium discoideum (social amoeba) tolerate long polyglutamine-containing proteins that are found naturally in this organism which would be predicted to be disease-causing if produced in humans.

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being

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