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UCL takes the lead with £8.5m funding for dementia research

11 December 2013

UCL has been awarded more than £8.5 million by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) and the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) to help tackle the challenges associated with dementia.

The investment was announced at today’s G8 dementia summit and represents a significant proportion of the total £20 million funding awarded by the two organisations for research into dementia prevention and improvements in the quality of life for people with dementia.

"Dementia is a major challenge for our society,” says ESRC Chief Executive Paul Boyle. “It is imperative to develop an understanding of the needs of those with dementia, their families and the communities they live in."

Professor Nick Fox (Professor of Clinical Neurology, Director of the Dementia Research Centre, Neurodegenerative Diseases, UCL Institute of Neurology) was interviewed on this morning's Radio 4 Today programme, discussing the challenges of dementia and profiling the new Leonard Wolfson Experimental Neurology Centre at UCL. 

Professor Martin Rossor (Director of the NIHR Dementia and Neurodegenerative Research Network (DeNDRoN)) discussed dementia research and drug discovery on Radio 4's You and Yours, saying: "We need large numbers of researchers working together and we need data access..."

The three UCL-led studies were allocated funding following an extremely competitive selection process. They include:

  • ‘Seeing what they see’, £2,621,429, led by Dr Sebastian Crutch (Principal Research Associate, Dementia Research Centre, Neurodegenerative Diseases, UCL Institute of Neurology ) Dementia-related visual impairment (caused by degeneration of the brain rather than the eye) is a common but greatly under-recognised symptom that contributes to problems as diverse as visual hallucinations, falls and poor diet. This project aims to deliver interventions that compensate for dementia-related visual impairment in the home/care home environment, and to investigate the impact of dementia-related visual impairment upon health-related quality of life in people with dementia and their carers.

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