Dr Ashvini Keshavan
Post-doctoral clinical research associate and Neurology registrar
Place of work / study:
University College London Institute of Neurology and National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery
Area of Research:
Biofluid biomarkers of Alzheimer’s disease
How is your work funded?
Wolfson Foundation and Weston Brain Institute/Selfridges Foundation
Tell us a little about yourself:
My research involves the application of blood and cerebrospinal fluid testing to the questions of early detection, differential diagnosis and prognosis in dementia, particularly Alzheimer’s disease. My PhD at UCL encompassed the application of novel blood tests for amyloid-beta, tau and neurofilament light chain to Insight 46, the neuroscience sub-study of the MRC’s British 1946 birth cohort. Moving forward my interests include bringing these tests into clinical practice and assessing their utility in more diverse and real-world settings.
Tell us a fun fact about yourself:
I learnt Odissi classical Indian dance from the age of 6 and after a long hiatus through medical house jobs I took it up again while entering research; I now help to teach it too!
Why did you choose to work in dementia?
One of my most enjoyable registrar training rotations was in cognitive neurology, because of the elegance demonstrated by my senior colleagues in assessing patients by history and examination, as well as the opportunity to learn about neuroimaging and cerebrospinal fluid sampling. We encounter dementia in all spheres of neurology and general medicine, and in my view it really is the problem of our times that most needs both preventive and therapeutic solutions. So when UCL advertised clinical research fellowships in neurodegeneration I knew that this was the field for me.