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Dr Rachael Scahill
  • 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 have over 60 peer-reviewed publications and am a member of the TrackOn HD Steering Committee as well as serving 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 TrackOn-HD study which integrates information from structural, functional and neurophysiological imaging modalities to identify compensatory networks in Huntington’s disease gene carriers.

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 am currently working towards a Professional Certificate in Teaching and Learning in Higher and Professional Education with the Institute of Education.

Academic Background
2003 PhD Doctor of Philosophy – Medical Imaging University College London
2000 MSc Master of Science – Computing London South Bank University
1992 BA Bachelor of Arts – Zoology Jesus College Oxford
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