Cognitive neurology

About

Professor Nestor is a clinician-scientist and joined the Queensland Brain Institute in October/2017. He also has a conjoint appointment at Mater Misericordiae Ltd (Mater Hospital).

He aims to relate the neuropsychological and behavioural profiles of degenerative dementias, such as Alzheimer's disease and frontotemporal dementia, to regional brain damage through neuroimaging (MRI and PET) and histopathological analysis. His particular interest is the pathological landscape of incipient dementia (so-called mild cognitive impairment).

By studying patients in this category he hopes to develop a greater understanding of the regions of highest vulnerability to neurodegeneration in different pathologies. Identification of such regions may potentially lead to a better understanding of what makes these regions vulnerable in the first place. His research ultimately aims to improve diagnostic certainty and prognostic markers of decline - both of which are relevant to therapeutic development.

To this end, a major focus of his is on developing novel approaches to MR imaging for single subject pathological diagnoses that can be exported into the everyday clinical setting; this has included to date diffusion imaging (Sajjadi et al, 2013) and quantitative susceptibility mapping (Acosta-Cabornero et al, 2013).

Patient Referrals

Professor Nestor’s memory clinic is located at Mater Public Hospital, South Brisbane. Specialists wishing to refer patients to this service should send the referral to Mater Memory Clinic, details of which can be found by clicking here.

Contact

  +61 7 344 32505

   nestor.research@uq.edu.au

Orcid


Group Publications

Research Areas

  • Dementia
  • Neurodegeneration
  • Neuropsychology
  • Neuroimaging
  • Alzheimer's disease
  • Frontotemporal Lobar Degeneration

Group Leader

Research Members

  • Dr Soo Lee

    Dr Soo Lee

    Clinical Research Coordinator
    Queensland Brain Institute

Support Staff

MRI Bio-Marker Study

Data Collection: 2019 – 2024

Currently, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans used in standard medical practice often offer only limited information for the diagnosis of different forms of degenerative brain diseases. The overall aim of this study is to improve the ability of MRI to make disease-specific diagnoses of the major neurodegenerative disease patients (eg., Alzheimer’s Disease, frontotemporal dementias, Parkinson’s Disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and related disorders) using advanced MRI methods. In addition to improved diagnosis, it is hoped that these new MRI methods may also offer new insights into how these diseases affect the brain and, therefore, potentially identify new targets for treatment.

 

Cognitive Test Development and Normative Data Collection Study

Data Collection: 2019 – 2024

In order to know if a mental ability is not normal in brain diseases that cause dementia, we first have to define normal! This involves testing healthy people in the same age range as those who develop dementias. We therefore need the help of healthy people over the age of 50 to do these tests so that we can create a normal range of performance. Some of these tests are already in use around the world and we need to create a normal range for the local population; sometimes we develop completely new tests that we hope will be more useful in diagnosing and understanding dementias than those that already exist.

To volunteer for this study, please click on this link and go to “Cognitive Test Development.”

 

The Australian Frontotemporal Dementia (FTD) Gene-Carrier Longitudinal Study

Data Collection: 2019 - Ongoing

FTD usually occurs spontaneously in single individuals, however, it can sometimes run in a family (meaning that multiple relatives are affected). Examples of these family forms of FTD include those caused by abnormalities in the C9orf72 gene, the progranulin (PGRN) gene or the tau gene. In this study, we are trying to better understand how the FTD disease process emerges by studying healthy first degree relatives from such families. The study involves a blood test, MRI scanning and tests of mental abilities. It is hoped that with a better understanding of how the disease emerges, methods of prevention might be developed in the future.

To volunteer for this study, please click on this link and go to “The FLAG Study”.

The Cognitive Neurology Group (Professor Peter Nestor) at the Queensland Brain Institute (QBI) conducts research on improving early detection and accurate diagnosis for different types of dementia.

Part of this involves developing better tests of memory, language and thinking abilities. In order to develop new tests and interpret performance of people with dementia, we also need the help of healthy people. This is where we need your help!

YOU NEED TO

  • Be over the age of 50 years.
  • Have English as your first language.
  • Be in reasonably good health with no previous history of significant brain diseases.
  • Be available for three hours (maximum) to attend an appointment at the QBI, UQ (St Lucia).

WHERE

Queensland Brain Institute (Building #79), The University of Queensland, St Lucia Qld.

YOUR COMMITMENT

You will be asked to complete a series of pen-and-paper and computerised tests that are designed to assess mental abilities, such as memory, thinking, language and how our eyes scan the world.

WILL I GET PAID?

There is no payment for participating.

INTERESTED?

If you meet the requirements and are interested in participating, or you would like further information, please email Dr Soo Lee (nestor.research@uq.edu.au), phone (07) 3443 2615, or visit the Nestor Lab website.