Senior Research Scientist
Leader of the Genetics and Epigenomics Group, Centre for Healthy Brain Ageing
Psychiatry, UNSW Sydney
Dr Karen Mather completed her first BSc (Biochemistry Honours) at La Trobe University, before finishing a Graduate Diploma in Psychology at Charles Sturt University. She finished her second BSc (Psychology Hons) at the Australian National University in Canberra, where she then completed her PhD in Psychology examining whether telomere length is a biomarker of ageing. Since then she has held a research position at the Centre for Health Brain Ageing, including holding an Alzheimer’s Australia Postdoctoral Fellowship. During this time, she played a key role in the establishment of the Genetics & Epigenomics Group, which she now leads. Her group includes a number of senior and junior staff and postgraduate and graduate students. At the end of 2017 Dr Mather joined NeuRA as a Senior Research Scientist, where her main research focus is to gain a better understanding of the genetic, epigenetic and environmental factors involved in ageing and age-related disease, including dementia. Current research by her group is being undertaken using large population cohorts of older adults from Australia and around the world. Ultimately, her research aims to prevent, delay or treat age-related decline and disease and to promote healthy ageing.
Dr Mather research in this project is aimed at discovering the genetics and epigenetics behind how and why certain people are able to live exceptionally long.
Dr Karen Mather investigates the changes that may occur in social cognition as people age. Social Cognition is a sub-topic of social psychology that focuses on how people process, store, and apply information about other people and social situations,
By using the discordant identical twin model, Dr Karen Mather aims to discover the epigenetic and environmental factors contributing to ageing-related phenotypes.