An association exists between intracranial pulsing and cognitive decline. This is seen in blood and CSF flow. Increased arterial stiffness is a possible mechanism; measures of pressure pulsing would help to confirm this. While flow measurements can be made relatively easily, intracranial pressure measurements are challenging. We have developed a novel approach measuring pulsations of the tympanic membrane and shown this to be associated with the MOCA cognitive assessment test in healthy subjects. There would be good support for a clinical academic trainee to explore these measurements of CSF dynamics in cognitively impaired patients.
Clinical Academic Training
Alzheimer’s disease (AD), Lewy Body Dementia (DLB) and Parkinson’s Disease (PD) have complex aetiology and pathogenesis and predicting the rate of clinical progression remains challenging. In Southampton, we showed that systemic inflammation increases the risk for earlier onset and/or progression of AD. In this project we will perform an in-depth analysis of serum and CSF samples to link pathways of inflammation to clinical progression. We will also measure amyloid, tau and alpha-synuclein and use state-of-the-art biophysical technology to link inflammation to specific conformers Collectively, this work may lead to novel composite biomarker to allow better diagnosis and allow better prediction of cognitive decline.