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Researchers launch Epilepsy Research Institute North West Doctoral Training Centre

A University of Liverpool researcher who specialises in neuroimaging and neuroscience has launched the Epilepsy Research Institute’s Doctoral Training Centre.

Professor Simon Keller, along with Dr Rebecca Bromley from the University of Manchester will lead the Training Centre. It aims to improve our understanding of the effects that epilepsy and anti-seizure medications have on cognition in people with epilepsy and their children.

The team is now recruiting students to complete PhDs relating to cognition in epilepsy.

Professor Simon Keller said:

“Epilepsy is more than just seizures. People with epilepsy often experience challenges with cognition and, despite the importance of this topic for people with epilepsy, research on this topic has been largely overlooked. Our Doctoral Training Centre, split across the Universities of Manchester and Liverpool in partnership with local NHS Trusts, will combine world-leading expertise in pre-clinical and clinical brain research in order to answer these important questions.”

The PhD Studentships are now open for applications and the projects are:

Cognition in people with epilepsy

Project 1: Investigating the changes to cognition over time and what factors influence them using studies with humans.

Project 2: Investigating how seizures and antiseizure medications have an impact on cognitive processes in animal and human cell studies.

Cognitive outcomes in the children of people with epilepsy

Project 3: Following up the children born to women with epilepsy to understand the impact of antiseizure medications on their cognition.

Project 4: Using animal and human cell investigations to uncover which antiseizure medications disrupt foetal brain development and how they do this.

Decision making in the clinic about cognitive risk in people with epilepsy and their future offspring

Project 5: Working with people with epilepsy and their families to understand how they view the impact of antiseizure medications on their cognitive functioning.

Project 6: Working with people with epilepsy to understand how they use complex information about the benefits and risks associated with their treatment to make decisions when planning a pregnancy.

More information on the Doctoral Training Centre can be found in this short video.

More information on each project and how to apply is provided on the Epilepsy Research Institute hub.