Our response to COVID-19

We're supporting people to maintain their wellbeing and manage isolation.

Researcher News

New Spinal Cord Research Injury Centre opens

Today, the New South Wales Health Minister Brad Hazzard and Treasurer Dominic Perrottet opened NeuRA’s new Spinal Cord Injury Research Centre. The Centre, built thanks to generous support from SpinalCure Australia, will be home to new cutting-edge research that couldhelp to significantly improve health outcomes for people with spinal cord injuries. During the visit, the two Ministers announced $6.4 million in funding to projects involving NeuRA’s researchers. “These projects have great scope, from investigating ways to restore touch sensation through immersive virtual reality through to using electrical stimulation to improve breathing for people affected by the most severe form of…

Why I’m volunteering to find a cure for spinal cord injuries

Two years ago, my life changed forever. I was diving in Port Macquarie when I had an accidental knock to the head.  It was a strange feeling – almost like someone came into the room and switched all the lights off. It turned out that I had a serious injury to the cervical 4/5 region of my spinal cord.  I couldn’t believe it.  I was hospitalised for one year and it was one of the toughest experiences of my life.  I left hospital in a wheelchair, knowing that I would likely live with quadriplegia for the rest of my life….

Our 1,000 Brains Project will help change lives

The brain is what defines us and makes us who we are. Good brain health enables us to build relationships with our loved ones, learn new things, solve problems, communicate and make sense of the world around us. Unfortunately, there are more than 400,000 Australians living with neurodegenerative diseases. These diseases can be rapid, dramatic and are almost always heartbreaking. Dementia has recently become the second most likely cause of death for Australians – and that is on track to become the leading cause of death. We must do something to stop the rise of this disease. This is why…

Team discovers a lack of new brain cells in people with schizophrenia

COVID-19 is having a massive impact on how we all live. As we come to terms with staying at home and dealing with the loss of daily interactions with friends and family, we should not forget some people experience isolation and social loss every day of their adult lives. People suffering from schizophrenia face the sad reality that social distancing measures will not be lifted for them, at least not without our help. Some say the only way societies can only “return to normal” is once researchers have developed a vaccine for COVID-19. Naturally, everyone is rallying behind those scientists…

The impact of Corona on our personality and total health

By Prof Kaarin Anstey One of the most important and sometimes challenging aspects of research is ensuring that the results lead to a positive impact on how we live our lives. I’ve had the privilege of following more than 7,000 participants in our PATH Through Life study since 2002, which is when I became an investigator on this project. The study has now been running for 20 years and has three cohorts – currently aged in their early forties, sixties and eighties. My PATH project team was in the field in March assessing the sixties group when the coronavirus emerged…

Iso burnout and stress as we readjust

By Dr Steve Kassem Over the past few months, people all over the world have been and continue to practice social distancing, isolating themselves to help stop the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic. However, what impact is this having on our brains? After so long at home, chances are many of us are tired, lonely and most likely suffering from isolation burnout, or as I would put it isolation stress. Historically instead called cabin fever, there is a stress we feel that is associated with isolation. I know I am feeling it, and at least anecdotally, I know many others…