Race Against Dementia is a global charity, founded by three-time Formula One world champion Sir Jackie Stewart, to fund breakthroughs in dementia research by applying the principles and expertise that have spurred incredible innovation in the fast-paced world of Formula One. I am extremely grateful to be part of the first cohort of Race Against Dementia fellows together with Dr Cara Croft, Dr Claire Durrant and Dr Ellen Dicks.
My research is focused on the lysosomal and autophagy pathway, which acts like a ‘waste disposal system’ within the brain cells that remove and recycle damaged material to prevent the build-up of toxic waste. I am particularly interested in understanding how genetic risk factors for Alzheimer’s disease disrupt this ‘waste disposal system’ and whether boosting the productivity of the brain’s clean-up machinery could be an effective way of treating Alzheimer’s disease.
One of the objectives of Race Against Dementia is to embed Formula One attitude and technology to drive culture change in dementia research. To help us understand the importance of creating a collaborative environment to accelerate dementia research, I visited Campus Biotech with the RAD team last year. Campus Biotech is a vibrant and collaborative life sciences hub with world-class research facilities in Geneva. For me, visiting Campus Biotech was an incredible experience. And I believe that Campus Biotech is a great example to demonstrate the possibility of creating a collaborative environment that brings everyone together. By bringing together expertise from a variety of biotechnology and life sciences disciplines under one roof, it allows us to translate cutting-edge research into clinical solutions.
I am so grateful for Sir Jackie’s vision in bringing Formula One to dementia research and the unique opportunity to collaborate and learn from leading figures from the Formula One world. I cannot appreciate enough the incredible opportunities this Race Against Dementia fellowship has opened up to me. I wholeheartedly recommend this fellowship to any early-career researchers determined to create a world free from dementia through innovative research
Dr Christy Hung was born and raised in Hong Kong. It was during her undergraduate final year project looking at the neural tube development that she first became interested in neuroscience. Driven by this passion, she went on to pursue a PhD at the University of Cambridge, focusing on the transportation of proteins inside nerve cells. After two years of postdoctoral training at the Gurdon Institute in Cambridge, Christy joined UCL in 2019 as a Race Against Dementia fellow, researching the lysosomal and autophagy pathway