7 March 2019

Stanford University opportunity for Perron Institute researcher

Brain stimulation therapies as a potential treatment for Alzheimer’s disease and other neurological disorders will be studied at prestigious Stanford University in the United States by Perron Institute neuroscience researcher Alesha Heath.

Alesha joined the Perron Institute’s brain plasticity research team led by Associate Professor Jenny Rodger in March 2018. She completed her PhD in December as part of a joint supervision arrangement between The University of Western Australia and the Sorbonne in Paris.

In her new role as a Postdoctoral Research Scholar at Stanford, Aleesha will be based in Palo Alto in California.

Her special research interest will be the effectiveness of brain stimulation for people with mild cognitive impairment, a condition which causes a slight decline in abilities such as memory and thinking skills.

“Although not always, mild cognitive impairment can mean Alzheimer’s is developing,” Alesha said.

“The hope is that identifying and treating early stage cognitive loss can slow the rate of decline and possibly pave the way for new treatments to delay the development of Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia.”

Alesha grew up in WA’s South West. Her interest in learning about the amazing ability of the brain to change and adapt began with the purchase of a book about neuroplasticity at a Donnybrook newsagency.

She hopes to return to Australia in the future to continue her research in the neurosciences field.