The brain is one of the most complex and fascinating organs in the human body. A piece of brain tissue the size of a grain of sand contains 100,000 neurons and 1 billion synapses. These systems support everything we do – but when something goes wrong, these conditions can be very hard to treat. The good news is that promoting brain health can help prevent many of these diseases.
Expert speakers will explain these conditions & discuss the latest research (don’t worry, they’ll go easy on the scientific jargon!). See below for the schedule.
During Brain Awareness Week 2022 we are releasing a series of videos, articles, and resources about the brain.
Day 1: Intro to brain health
Day 2: Brain disorder resources from experts
Day 3: Patient stories and support
Day 4: Brain disorder resources from experts
Day 5: Migraine – a common & debilitating brain disorder
Remika is a postdoctoral researcher in the Imaging and Epilepsy Group. She received her Honours degree (First Class Honours and University Medal) from the University of Sydney in 2014, and PhD from the University of Melbourne in 2019. Her publications include an editor’s choice publication in Brain, a renowned scientific journal, and she has received multiple awards, including awards from the International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine and Epilepsy Society of Australia. She received a Brain Foundation research grant in 2021 for concussion research. Currently, there is no device that allows medical practitioners to diagnose concussion. Dr Mito’s research seeks to change this by using a new type of imaging technology, which could allow clinicians to quickly detect concussion in the brain.
Dr Felix Ng is a stroke neurologist at the Royal Melbourne and Austin Hospitals. He serves on the Melbourne Mobile Stroke Unit and provides acute stroke care to regional Victoria through the Victorian Stroke Telemedicine service. He graduated from the University of Melbourne in 2006 and completed his specialty training in Melbourne. He has a strong interest in research, and has received multiple awards for his work (Australian and New Zealand Association of Neurologists Jim Mcleod Award; Stroke Society of Australasia Peter Bladin New Investigator Award). He is currently undertaking a PhD in stroke neuroimaging, focusing on the post-stroke complications and recovery. Dr Ng received a Brain Foundation grant in 2017 for this research.
Dr San Gil is the current Fight MND Early Career Research Fellow based at the Queensland Brain Institute. She has over 6 years’ experience researching the cellular and molecular pathologies associated with motor neuron disease (MND) in Australia and the UK. Currently, she is working in the Neurodegeneration Pathobiology Laboratory researching the causes of MND and frontotemporal dementia (FTD), and developing effective therapies to slow, stop, or cure disease. She received a Brain Foundation research grant in 2019 to investigate TDP-43 toxicity to identify genes that might be targets for treatment.
Vivien is a specialist neurologist. She completed her Bachelor of Medicine and Surgery at the University of Melbourne in 2011 and received the Australian Medical Association Prize for achieving the highest score in her cohort. Vivien has published in a number of international journals and is currently a PhD candidate at the Florey Institute of Neuroscience and Mental Health researching multiple sclerosis (MS) and neuroimmunology. She received a Brain Foundation research grant in 2021 to examine disease activity in MS patients. Her work will use advanced imaging technology to look for subtle signs of MS activity in people with MS who need to stop or switch their treatment. This would provide clinicians and patients more information to make treatment decisions and help distinguish between people who could safely stop treatment versus those who may still be benefiting from ongoing therapy.
Dr Heidi Beadnall is a Staff Specialist Neurologist at the Royal Prince Alfred Hospital and Clinical Lecturer at the Brain and Mind Centre, the University of Sydney. She is also an investigator in the Multiple Sclerosis Clinical Trials Unit based at the Brain and Mind Centre. Her main areas of subspecialty interest are multiple sclerosis (MS) and neuroimmunology, and she has authored over 20 publications in peer-reviewed journals in these fields. In 2019 she was awarded a PhD in the use of quantitative MRI brain atrophy measurement techniques in real-world MS patients, with regard to clinical correlations and use in clinical practice. She received a Brain Foundation Research Grant in 2018 for a project which used MRI to look at changes in brain volume over time to see if this could accurately measure neurodegeneration in MS. She was awarded the MSBase Fellowship in 2019 to work on the development of the MSBase Imaging Repository (MSBIR), a project she continues to contribute towards.
Dr Sutherland is the director of the NSW Brain Tissue Research Centre and an Associate Professor of Pathology at The University of Sydney. He also leads the ‘Brain and Body’ research node at the Charles Perkins Centre, which aims to understand the bidirectional relationships between the brain and systemic chronic disorders (i.e. obesity, diabetes). His research interests include neuropathology, transcriptomics and genetic epidemiology of neurodegenerative diseases including Alzheimer’s disease (AD) and alcohol-related brain damage. Dr Sutherland spoke to us in 2021 about brain banking in Australia and discussed the future of our neurological research landscape. You can read this article via the link below.
To access the Brain Awareness Week resources, all you need to do is sign up to our newsletter and they’ll be sent right to your inbox.
Help raise money for research while also raising awareness in your community. You can participate in a fun run, host a bake sale, or get creative!
Brain Awareness Week was first organised in 1996 by the Dana Foundation. Visit their website for brain games, fact sheets, and more.
Invite your friends & family to a night of trivia and put your brains to the test! No need to organise everything – simply contact our office for a Big Trivia pack.
Fun fact: socialising is a major part of long-term brain health. Take a break one day to celebrate Brain Awareness Week with your classmates or colleagues.
Please consider donating to support Australian neurological research. Your donation will help so many, now and for generations to come.
The Brain Foundation is a registered charity established in 1970 by neurologists and neurosurgeons. We are dedicated to funding the highest quality Australian research into neurological disorders, diseases, and injuries, with the ultimate goal of advancing diagnoses, treatments, and patient outcomes.
Our work involves:
Our research grants receive no government funding, relying on the generosity of individuals, corporate donors and bequests. Your support will make a difference – now and for generations to come.
No, we are keeping all of our resources online this year.
Simply sign up to our newsletter and they will be sent to your inbox during the week.
No, the video presentations are all pre-recorded.
You can host a fundraiser, share information about the brain on social media (i.e. from our Facebook page), or simply have a conversation with a loved one about brain health. Contact us if you would like any help with setting up a fundraiser.