Dr Rimona Weil
Ishar (Alexi) Kalsi
I am a Wellcome clinician scientist and consultant neurologist at the Dementia Research Centre, University College London, where I lead the Vision in Parkinson’s disease group. Our group works to shed light on how dementia happens in Parkinson’s disease. We focus on using visual perception measures as early clues of cognitive involvement in Parkinson’s disease. Our ultimate aim is to use these measures to inform clinical trials to slow the progression of dementia in Parkinson’s disease.
I graduated from Downing College, Cambridge University and University College London in 2001 and have worked in clinical neurology and neuroscience since 2005. My PhD research at the Wellcome Trust Centre for Neuroimaging, UCL examined the integration of visual signals in the healthy and damaged brain and was completed in 2009. I trained as a Neurologist at the Royal Free Hospital and National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery, Queen Square. I was awarded a UCL Excellence Fellowship in 2014, when I developed the Vision in Parkinson’s disease group that uses neuroimaging and visual perception measures to determine how dementia happens in Parkinson’s disease.
I am a specialist registrar in Neurology with an interest in cognitive neurology and movement disorders.
My clinical and research interest is the aetiology, diagnosis and treatment of Parkinson's disease dementia and Dementia with Lewy Bodies.
After gaining clinical experience at UCLH, East Kent and St George's hospitals, I joined the Dementia Research Centre, funded by an Alzheimer's Research UK Fellowship and supervised by Dr Rimona Weil and Professor Geraint Rees.
My PhD aims to shed light on the neural correlates of visual hallucinations in Parkinson's disease and Dementia with Lewy Bodies. I aim to understand the changes in brain activation and connectivity in patients who have hallucinations and those who do not.
I also aim to develop methods to more accurately predict which individuals with Parkinson's are at risk of hallucinations before they occur.
I am a PhD student supervised by Dr Rimona Weil interested in finding neural substrates underlying the onset and development of dementia. After completing an MSci in Natural Sciences at UCL, I joined the Dementia Research Centre on a Medical Research Council funded studentship.
My research uses advanced neuroimaging methods to try and predict which individuals with Parkinson’s disease are at a higher risk of developing dementia. One of the main techniques I use is Quantitative susceptibility mapping, a way of estimating brain iron distribution - a possible precursor to cell death. By combining this with analysis of functional brain connectivity and gene expression data, my PhD aims to describe brain regions and networks that are sensitive to degeneration and implicated in cognitive decline in Parkinson’s disease.
I am a Clinical Research Assistant working as the Study Coordinator on the Vision in Parkinson’s disease study. I work specifically on the “Away” project, which consists of monitoring study sites across the UK. I also work on the Movement Disorders registry at UCL wherein my main responsibilities are recruiting and consenting patients to the registry and to specific research projects. I have completed a Master’s in Neuroscience at Kings College London, and I am interested in learning about the clinical, molecular, physiological and therapeutic aspects of movement disorders.
I am a Research Assistant working on the Vision in Parkinson's Disease project. I am involved in the visual and cognitive testing of some of our research participants. I also co-coordinate part of the project investigating visual and cognitive function, as well as neuroimaging, in people with dementia with Lewy bodies. I previously studied Neuroimaging for Clinical and Cognitive Neuroscience for my Msc and then spent time working as a research assistant at Imperial College London. I am interesting in exploring how brain structure and function changes during Parkinson’s disease and related disorders.
Ishar (Alexi) Kalsi is a medical student at King’s College London and is currently intercalating in Clinical Neuroscience at the UCL Institute of Neurology at Queen Square. He has an interest in the genetics of Parkinson’s Disease and Parkinson’s Disease Dementia. He is currently exploring the role of Polygenic Risk Scores for predicting the severity and progression of these conditions in patients. Having gained experience in both US and UK research institutions, he hopes to continue pursuing his passion for the neurosciences towards a medical career in Neurology.
Sam is a Dual Masters Brain and Mind Sciences MSc student at UCL Institute of Neurology. He graduated from the University of Bristol with a 1st Class BSc in Experimental Psychology in 2016. Broadly his interests include neurodegenerative disease and the application of clinical neuroscience to understand cognitive processes such as visual perception, learning and memory in the healthy brain. Currently he is investigating the potential of retinal thinning as a biomarker for disease progression in Parkinson’s disease.
Katarina Pappa completed a BSc in Psychology at Birkbeck, followed by an MSc in Cognitive Neuroscience at UCL. She worked as a Research Assistant in our group in 2016. She worked on developing the Cats-and-Dogs visuo—perceptual test in people with Parkinson’s disease and on developing the web-based visuo-perceptual assessments. She is now working as a Research Assistant to Jenny Crinion at the Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience, UCL.
I am a 3rd year medical student undertaking an iBSc in neuroscience. My interests in neuroscience lie primarily in the pathophysiology of neurodegenerative diseases. I am assisting Dr Weil in a study looking at whether metacognitive accuracy is impaired in PD patients with hallucinations. I am also helping out in the pilot stage of a study in which we are using flickering stimuli to induce hallucinations in a controlled environment with the ultimate aim of scanning patients with MRI to deepen our understanding of how frontal lobe activity may differ in hallucinators compared to non-hallucinators. My future aspirations are to practise medicine and I hope to continue my education in the field of neuroscience in the years to come.
Julia completed a BSc in Psychology and Cognitive Neuroscience from The University of Nottingham, as well as a year abroad in Melbourne, Australia at Monash University as part of international study. She is currently undertaking an MSc in Clinical Neuroscience at UCL, her research project investigates web-based visuo-perceptual measures as predictors of cognitive decline in Parkinson’s disease. Her main interests are related to neuropsychology and neurological conditions and disorders.
Rachel Schade completed a Bachelors, majoring in Neuroscience at Pitzer College, Claremont, USA, before working as a research assistant at Claremont University and Linda Loma Hospital. She joined the MSc in Clinical Neuroscience programme at UCL. Rachel worked on developing the web-based visuo-perceptual tests.
Marion is a student on the Dual Masters in Brain and Mind Sciences. She graduated from University College London with a first class BSc in Biomedical Sciences, with a specialty in neuroscience . Her interests mainly lie in the genetic correlates of neuropsychiatric and neurodegenerative diseases, and how these can influence the development of various cognitive functions. Her current research focuses on investigating the role of GBA mutations in visual cognition in Parkinson's disease.
I completed a BSc in Psychology at Bournemouth University, then went on to completed an MSc in Clinical and developmental neuropsychology with distinction at Bournemouth university. I then worked as part of a pilot outpatient nursing program for people with dementia in Norway before returning to the UK. I am currently undertaking an MSc in Dementia: Treatment, Causes and research (neuroscience) at UCL. My project focuses on gait measures as a predictor of cognitive decline in Parkinson’s disease. My main interests are neurodegenerative disorders and the neuropsychology of dementia.
I am an intercalating medical student at UCL reading neuroscience as part of my iBsc. This year, I am working with Dr. Weil on a project investigating vision in atypical Parkinsonism, including Multiple System Atrophy and Corticobasal degeneration. This project will make use of the Cats-and-dogs test among other tests of visual function. My eventual aspirations are to qualify as a doctor and to pursue a research career in neuroscience.
Diane completed a BSc in Biomedical Sciences, in the Neuroscience Stream, at University College London (UCL). She is currently a student of the Clinical Neuroscience MSc at the UCL’s Institute of Neurology. Diane is passionate about the progress of science and research in order to bring progress to treatment and management of patients. She is very interested in neurodegenerative processes and their effect on the complex interactions of brain areas. Her current research explores the potential of retinal thinning as a biomarker for the development of dementia in Parkinson’s disease.
Ivanna Pavisic completed a BSc in Biology at the University of Lausanne, Switzerland, before joining the MRes Translational Neurology Masters programmes at University College London. Her MSc project was instrumental in developing the web-based visuo-perceptual tests that are now in use in our group. She graduated with a distinction and is now a PhD student with Sebastian Crutch at the UCL Dementia Research Centre.
I am a Medical Sciences undergraduate student at the University of Leeds, I have completed two years of my Bsc and I am currently completing an industrial placement at UCL working as a research assistant in the lab group. My role includes assisting on different aspects of the project which investigates visual function in Parkinson’s disease. I am especially interested in the retinal changes which occur in Parkinson’s disease, and I am excited to have the opportunity to assist on the collection and extraction of the data in this project
I am a research associate working on the Vision in Parkinson's disease project as a study coordinator. I liaise with research teams to set up and conduct the study at various sites around the UK. In addition, I work on various other Parkinson’s related research studies at UCL. I came to the UK from the US in 2014 to study Clinical Neuroscience at King’s College London for my MSc. I am interested in learning more about the association between the genetic and clinical aspects of Parkinson’s and how it can impact on daily life for those who are affected by it.
I am a research masters student working on the VIPD study, with a specific focus on the link between genetics and Parkinson’s disease progression. I assist with the clinical assessment of participants and am involved in the analysis of genetic data. Last year, I graduated in Biomedical Sciences from the University of York and am now completing my MRes degree in Translational Neurology at UCL. My project places a particular emphasis on the potential of novel genetic techniques in predicting the clinical outcomes of individual Parkinson’s patients; hoping to improve diagnosis and enable earlier treatment.
I am a master’s student currently undertaking an Mres in Translational Neuroscience at UCL, following from my BSc in biomedical sciences from which I graduated in 2019. It was during my undergraduate degree that I developed a keen interest in neurological conditions and the people that they affect, which has led to my current work on the Vision in Parkinson’s disease study. I am focusing on observing changes in retinal thickness and visuoperceptual function in Parkinson’s patients in order to determine if these measures have value as predictors for the onset of dementia; I thoroughly enjoy working with the Parkinson’s community and hope to continue furthering our knowledge of this condition.
I am a Research Associate working on the Vision in Parkinson's Disease study at UCL along with other Neurological studies. I studied Health Psychology and previously worked in Adult & Paediatric nursing. My role involves in data collection by conducting battery of Neuropsychological & Visual assessments at the Institute of Neurology. I am interested in the genetic factors that contribute towards Parkinson's disease and how it impacts their visual functions.
I received my BSc in Psychology from the University of Southampton and continued on to complete an MSc in Research Methods in Psychology there. I then went on to study Visual and Cognitive function after stroke for my PhD with Professor Simon P. Liversedge and Dr. Valerie Benson, specifically investigating eye movements in patients suffering from Hemispatial Neglect. After leaving the University of Southampton, I took a Postdoctoral Research Associate position in the School of Psychology and Clinical Language Sciences at the University of Reading with Dr. Carien van Reekum. This was a multi-institution and interdisciplinary project investigating the effect of exercise on cognitive function in older adults. Throughout this time I worked closely with the Centre for Integrative Neuroscience and Neurodynamics and continued on to investigate emotional regulation in older adults via fMRI with Dr Michiko Sakaki after the intervention study was complete. I am now extremely excited to be working with Dr. Rimona Weil in the Institute of Neurology at UCL, investigating visual function, as well as brain and retinal changes, in patients who have Parkinson’s Disease.