Our response to COVID-19

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

Researcher News

How is brain activity related to wellbeing?

The brain is involved in our mental wellbeing – we know this much. But how? PhD student Miranda Chilver together with her supervisor Dr Justine Gatt and colleagues have recently published a study called “Electroencephalography profiles are a biomarker of wellbeing: “A twin study” in the Journal of Psychiatric Research, which specifically explores how electrical brain activity is associated with mental wellbeing. Electroencephalography, better known as EEG, is a tool used to non-invasively measure electrical potentials from the surface of the scalp. The measured activity reflects the combined signal of millions of brain cells, and can provide insight into what…

Researchers examine long-term health impacts of COVID-19 pandemic

Dementia experts at NeuRA are modifying their research to assess the impact that COVID-19 is having on cognitive decline in Australia. By investigating whether COVID-19 has altered our ability to function and feel good, researchers can identify whether global crises increase the rates of long-term mental disorders, memory problems or cognitive diseases, such as dementia. Scientia Professor Kaarin Anstey is a leading dementia expert whose research has identified risk and protective factors for dementia. She oversees the PATH Through Life Study, which began in 1999 and involves is tracking over 2,000 people as they age. This study comprises of three…

Protecting your mental health during COVID-19

The Coronavirus pandemic has forced us to practice social distancing and has reduced our ability to see our friends and family. This has caused increased levels of anxiety, stress and loneliness among many of us. During a crisis, we should be doing all that we can to take care of our own psychological wellbeing. NeuRA’s mental health expert, Dr Justine Gatt, has put together the following tips to help us be more resilient and better able to cope with stress:

Best home exercises to reduce your falls risk

NeuRA’s exercise specialist Kim Delbaere has put together a short list of exercises that could help you to maintain good balance and reduce your risk of falling. These are simple movements that are easy to do at home, and will help to prevent the loss of strength and stability that we are at risk of during this period of isolation. These balance exercises have a significant benefit for people over the age of 65 years. Practicing them for just two hours per week can significantly reduce the risk of falling among this age group. “We face a risk of deconditioning…

COVID-19 research to reduce reliance on ventilators could save many lives

Dr Euan McCaughey, a senior researcher at Neuroscience Research Australia (NeuRA) is embarking on a new project that could help save lives during the COVID-19 epidemic. Dr McCaughey is seeking $2 million in funding for a study that could reduce the length of time a critically ill patient will need to rely on a mechanical ventilator by 15 per cent. Ventilators are commonly used in hospitals to treat those who develop pneumonia after contracting COVID-19. In the study, researchers will use electric currents to strengthen the abdominal muscles of patients. These muscles, which are used to help someone breath, quickly…

A special message from NeuRA CEO Professor Peter Schofield AO

I would like to extend my thoughts to you all as we all grapple with the COVID-19 pandemic. I hope that you are taking care of yourselves and those around you in what has and continues to be a difficult time for our community. As an institute working towards improving health outcomes for all Australians, especially the elderly, we are deeply concerned about the potential impact of COVID-19. The virus takes the heaviest toll on older people, making this health emergency a particular concern for us given so many of our research participants are in this demographic. Your health is…