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NEWS AND MEDIA

Researchers uncover key factors that help Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to age well

Researchers have released a new report showcasing how Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are successfully avoiding dementia and protecting their brain health. The Sharing the Wisdom of Our Elders report by Neuroscience Research Australia (NeuRA) details the findings of a six-year study with Elders across Aboriginal communities to identify the key factors that help Indigenous Australians thrive as they age. The report is the output of a project funded by the Lowitja Institute after NeuRA research found Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians develop dementia about 10 years earlier than the general population.  Alarmingly, the rate of dementia is…

Support Rhonda Burchmore & help NeuRA’s research

If you’ve been watching Channel 10’s I’m a Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here!, you may have seen NeuRA mentioned a couple of times! Rhonda Burchmore, one of Australia’s biggest theatre stars, has selected NeuRA as her charity of choice for the series. This means that keeping Rhonda in till the end and crowning her ‘Queen of the Jungle’ will result in NeuRA receiving a $100,000 donation.       How can I support Rhonda and NeuRA at the same time? 1. Vote by SMS Save Rhonda! To keep your Rhonda in the jungle, SMS ‘Rhonda’ to 1995 10 10. Each…

Researchers identify new modifiable safety risk in cars for children

A series of crash-test simulations have found that the shape and height of arm rests in the rear seat of cars can reduce the effectiveness child restraints during side impact crashes. The study by Julie Brown, co-director of the Transurban Road Safety Centre at Neuroscience Research Australia (NeuRA), found that the position of arm rests can influence the likelihood of head injuries during a crash, even when a child is correctly strapped into their car seat. Her team of researchers found the risk of head injury during a side collision can increase by up to 52 per cent depending on…

Improved self-reported health could be key in reducing the health gap facing Indigenous Australians

A new study has found Indigenous Australians who describe themselves as ‘more resilient’ are 40 per cent more likely to report good health as they age. The study of more than 200 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people aged 60 years and over looked into the factors that lead to good self-reported health, which could help improve current health services. The results showed those who reported higher levels of resilience, such as being able to cope with stress and change, and maintain a positive outlook, are likely to rate themselves as being in good health in years to come. Lead…

Launch of the most comprehensive atlas of the human brainstem

In a ceremony held at Neuroscience Research Australia (NeuRA), medical history was made today. Hosted by Professor Ian Jacobs, the Vice Chancellor of The University of New South Wales, “Human Brainstem: Cytoarchitecture, Chemoarchitecture, Myeloarchitecture” was launched. It is the most comprehensive atlas of the human brainstem, akin to a Google map for the brain. The brainstem is critical for the regulation of vital functions such as breathing, movement, and arousal, as well as cognition and emotion. Different regions (nuclei) in the brainstem are compromised in a range of human pathologies, including the progressive supranuclear palsy, multiple systems atrophy, autism spectrum…

New discovery: how chronic pain changes your brain and personality

In a world-first, Australian researchers have found that people with chronic pain experience physical alterations in their brain that likely leads to negative changes in their personality. The study by Associate Professor Sylvia Gustin from Neuroscience Research Australia and University of New South Wales, discovered that people with chronic pain have smaller amounts of the brain’s key chemical messenger, glutamate, in the brain region responsible for regulating thoughts and emotions. “The study shows people with chronic pain experience disruptions in the communication between brain cells.  This could lead to a change in personality through a reduction of their ability to…