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Dr Rachael Scahill
Dr Rachael Scahill profile picture
  • Principal Research Associate
  • Neurodegenerative Diseases
  • UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology
  • Faculty of Brain Sciences

I studied Zoology at Jesus College Oxford and after an MSc in Computing, I completed my PhD at UCL examining early neuroimaging changes in patients with familial Alzheimer’s disease. I was awarded an MRC postdoctoral fellowship which I undertook at the Dementia Research Centre. In 2008 I joined Professor Sarah Tabrizi’s Huntington’s Disease Research Group where I lead her imaging team. I serve on a number of international working groups on Huntington’s Disease. 

Research Summary

My research has focussed on structural MR imaging in neurodegenerative diseases. I have developed methods for automated image analysis and applied these to aid the early detection of neurodegeneration in the brain and to monitor disease progression over time. These techniques have demonstrated brain atrophy several years prior to symptom onset in gene carriers of Alzheimer’s disease (AD) and Huntington’s disease (HD). Ultimately, I hope these tools will be used as outcome measures to assess therapeutic efficacy in future clinical trials. I am currently working on the TREAT-HD study, a Wellcome Trust funded project to investigate mechanisms of neuronal recovery following treatment as well as identify the ideal time window to administer therapies. 

Teaching Summary

I lecture on the UCL Institute of Neurology MSc in Advanced Neuroimaging and MRes in Brain Sciences courses and have also designed and presented a teaching module on Neuroimaging in Neurology for first and second year medical students. I hold a Professional Certificate in Teaching and Learning in Higher and Professional Education from the Institute of Education.

Academic Background
2003   Doctor of Philosophy University College London
1992   Bachelor of Arts Jesus College Oxford
    ATQ01 - Successfully completed an institutional provision in teaching in the HE sector  
2000   Master of Science London South Bank University
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