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Katharine Huynh

RESEARCHER PROFILE

Research Assistant

(02) 9399 1116


Katharine recently graduated from a Bachelor of Psychology (Hons Class I, University Medal) at the University of Sydney. Her honours thesis characterised white matter hyperintensities in frontotemporal dementia and Alzheimer’s disease using cutting edge neuroimaging techniques. She is interested in exploring the role of various lifestyle factors on mental and cognitive health and well-being in ageing and dementia populations. Katharine is currently assisting in the Self-management and Health Promotion in early-stage dementia with E-learning for carers (SHAPE) project and Personality and Total Health (PATH) Through Life project.

Projects Katharine Huynh is currently involved with

CURRENT PROJECTS

Self-management and Health Promotion in early-stage dementia with E-learning for carers (SHAPE).

This is a trial designed to test a new intervention to support people with early stage dementia and their care partners. The research will combine three existing interventions based on self-management, health promotion and e-learning into one extended educational program. We hope to improve well-being and support people to live in their own homes for as long as possible by providing the relevant knowledge, information and skills directly to the people with dementia.

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Self-management and Health Promotion in early-stage dementia with E-learning for carers (SHAPE).

The Personality and Total Health (PATH) Through Life Project 

The Personality and Total Health (PATH) Through Life Project is co-hosted by the Australian National University and the University of New South Wales and has been led by Professor Anstey since 2006. It is a large on-going population-based longitudinal cohort study comprising approximately 7500 participants. The study includes three cohorts including a younger (aged 20–24 at baseline), midlife (aged 40–44 at baseline) and older (aged 60–64 at baseline) adults randomly sampled from the electoral roll of the ACT and the nearby city of Queanbeyan. Additional waves of data collection have occurred in 4-year increments, with the 5th wave of data collection underway. The study involves many national and international collaborations.

The broad aims of the PATH study relate to clinical outcomes that constitute the major burden of disease within the Australian community.

Primary PATH Objectives:

  • To delineate the course of depression, anxiety, substance use and cognitive ability with increasing age across the adult life span
  • To identify environmental risk, genetic risk and protective factors influencing individual differences in the course of these characteristics
  • To investigate interrelationships over time between the three domains of: depression and anxiety, substance use, and cognitive ability and dementia
  • To examine the mental health related impact of various personal, social and lifestyle transitions and events experienced by the different age cohorts, including infertility, fertility and pregnancy, changes in family structure, relationship formation and separation, menopause, and retirement.

Several design features of the PATH project contribute to its unique standing among population-based longitudinal cohort studies.

  • Obtaining measures of genetic, biological (including MRI), psychosocial and lifestyle risk and protective factors for mental health and wellbeing
  • Use of a narrow age cohort design with longitudinal follow ups as an optimal means of separating age and cohort effects
  • Assessment of participants across the full adult lifespan, permitting investigation of developmentally significant, though under-studied periods such as midlife
  • Recruitment and follow up of a young-old population, providing important pre-clinical data for studying the development of age-related changes in memory and cognition.

This project has been funded primarily by the National Health and Medical Research Council. Wave 5 40s and 60s follow-ups (led by Professor Kaarin Anstey) are funded by the ARC Centre of Excellence in Population Ageing Research. 

For more information, please visit the study website at www.pathstudy.org.au. PATH participants can also contact the research team by phone on 1300 917 295.

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The Personality and Total Health (PATH) Through Life Project 

RESEARCH TEAM