Tuki Attuquayefio

RESEARCHER PROFILE

ARC Research Fellow

0410687739


Tuki completed his PhD in Psychology at Macquarie University in 2018, exploring the relationship between obesity and cognitive function. He has worked internationally on the cognitive and brain functions impacted by diet and obesity. He is currently Research Fellow on an ARC Linkage grant exploring whether cognitive changes associated with ageing impacts older drivers’ use of emerging vehicle automation and assistive technologies.

Projects Tuki Attuquayefio is currently involved with

CURRENT PROJECTS

MemTech

For many older adults, driving is essential for independence and participation in life.  However, ageing is associated with a range of physical, sensory, and cognitive changes, some of which can influence driving safety. Neurodegenerative conditions such as dementia can progress very gradually, and regular monitoring is required to identify the point at which driving becomes unsafe. Current methods of monitoring road safety for older drivers relies on regular reviews with doctors or expensive and stressful driving tests. These methods are resource intensive and inefficient. Thus, there is a need for more cost-effective and less invasive ways of monitoring road safety for older drivers. The Changing Memory, Technology and Driving study (MemTech) will investigate whether a dashboard camera and a GPS data logger can be used to accurately measure changes in safety during an older driver’s everyday driving trips. The study will involve older drivers who are experiencing changes in their thinking and memory or early stages of dementia, as well as older drivers without any cognitive difficulties. This will allow data to be compared across the two groups to determine whether the in-vehicle GPS devices can detect changes in driver safety associated with cognitive change. If it can, this will provide valuable research data for the future development of accurate in-vehicle monitoring systems for older driver safety.

This research is being funded by the Office of Road Safety.

If you would like to take part in this research study, please contact

Ms Abirami Raveendran

Phone: (02) 9399 1058

Email: memtech@neura.edu.au

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MemTech

Older Drivers’ Use Of Technology

The project aims to enhance our understanding of whether cognitive changes associated with ageing impacts older drivers’ use of emerging vehicle automation and assistive technologies. However, driving is also crucial for independence and social connection for many older people, so the project will also provide benefits for the wellbeing of older adults by keeping them mobile for longer. The findings will inform older drivers, government policy makers and industry and assist in enhancing road safety.

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Older Drivers’ Use Of Technology

The Driving, Ageing, Safety and Health (DASH) project

Older adults represent a growing sector of the driving population in Australia, and while driving can be important for maintaining social engagement in late life, age-related changes such as cognitive and visual impairment can impact on driving safety.

The Driving, Ageing, Safety and Health (DASH) project is designed to develop and validate screening measures for older drivers to support determinations of driving safety. The DASH project is a collaboration with Joanne Wood and the Queensland University of Technology.

Over 550 older drivers, across three groups, were followed for two years to evaluate how well laboratory assessments and an on-road test predict driving outcomes. The three groups included a) older drivers referred for assessment by GPs and Road Safety Authorities, b) older drivers with eye disease and c) older drivers drawn from the community.

Primary Aims:

Secondary Aims:

  • To compare the efficacy of the Multi-D and other screening instruments in predicting prospective self-reported crash rates (derived from standardized monthly diaries) between three groups of older drivers
  • To evaluate the screening instruments and assessments in relation to mobility outcomes (driving cessation, driving frequency, driving distance) over two years and longer pending further funding
  • To collaborate with practitioners to develop clinical practice guidelines for using the Multi-D battery in the context of older driver assessment
  • To inform the development and design of interventions to prevent injuries among older drivers.

Findings from this research project will enable health professionals and licensing authorities to assist in their decision-making regarding the fitness to drive of older adults.

DASH is funded by the National Health and Medical Research Council.

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The Driving, Ageing, Safety and Health (DASH) project

The Body-Brain-Life Project

A growing number of modifiable risk and preventative factors for dementia have been identified. Primary care offers a natural setting for the identification of those who may be at particular risk and who may subsequently benefit most from risk reduction interventions.

The Body, Brain, Life – General Practice (BBL-GP) project – a continuation of the original Body Brain Life study – evaluates the efficacy of lifestyle management programs for reducing risk profiles for dementia in adults recruited from primary care. The project compares three different interventions: a BBL-GP intervention designed to reduce the risk of cognitive decline, a Lifestyle Modification Program (LMP) designed to enhance general wellbeing and improve lifestyle to reduce risk of chronic disease, and an Active Control condition. A total of 120 adults participated in the trial.

The BBL-GP intervention group completed eight online e-learning modules designed to improve dementia literacy, knowledge of risk factors, physical activity, nutrition, health, cognitive activity, social activity and mood. This group also received tailored face-to-face physical activity and nutrition sessions. Participants in the LMP group participated in group sessions on basic nutrition, meal planning, physical activity, health conditions, motivation and goals, medications and sleep. The Active Control group received weekly emails with links to information regarding lifestyle risk factors and disease management.

Primary Outcome:

 

Secondary Outcomes:

  • Cognitive function
  • Physical activity
  • Depressive symptoms
  • Diet quality
  • Sleep quality

Outcomes were assessed immediately following the intervention, 18-weeks post-intervention, and 36-weeks post-intervention. The final follow-up at 62-weeks post-intervention is due to be completed in mid-2018. A cost evaluation of the two interventions will also be completed.

Read more about the BBL-GP protocol here.

The BBL-GP project is funded by the National Health and Medical Research Council Centre of Research Excellence in Cognitive Health.

 

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The Body-Brain-Life Project

RESEARCH TEAM

KIRSTY ZMISA Executive Assistant : 9399 1021
: k.zmisa@neura.edu.au

PUBLICATIONS

No evidence of flavour-nutrient learning in a two-week 'home exposure' study in humans.

Attuquayefio T, Parish S, Rogers PJ, Brunstrom JM

Factors Associated With Anxiety Symptoms in Australian Deaf or Hard of Hearing Children.

Long J, Attuquayefio T, Hudson JL

Explicit wanting and liking for palatable snacks are differentially affected by change in physiological state, and differentially related to salivation and hunger.

Stevenson RJ, Francis HM, Attuquayefio T, Ockert C
View all publications