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Providing a neuropathological basis for concussion diagnosis & determination of recovery

The heterogenous, subjective, and often subtle and rapidly evolving nature of concussion symptoms and signs creates challenges for diagnosis. Progress has been made with clinical screening tools, but concussion remains a clinical presentation without a defined pathological basis, and as such, some have suggested it is not yet a true diagnosis. We and others have shown that neuropathological changes can last beyond concussion symptoms, and that such changes seem to create a window of heightened vulnerability to repeated concussion. Circulating molecules and advanced MRI that reflect different aspects of concussion pathology have shown promise to be detectable after brain injury. Nonetheless, studies suffer from small sample sizes, single time-point or wide-ranging serial assessments with high attrition rates, a lack of females, and none have featured simultaneous measures of multiple blood and MRI biomarkers over time. Here, we will enrol amateur Australian football players and use a multimodal approach to determine how advanced blood and MRI can provide neuropathological substrates for concussion diagnosis and determination of brain recovery.
Essential criteria: 
Minimum entry requirements can be found here:
Concussion, biomarker, mild traumatic brain injury, AFL, MRI, physiology, neuroscience, pathology
Available options 
Masters by research
Time commitment 
Top-up scholarship funding available 
Physical location 
Alfred Centre, The Alfred Hospital
Assoc Prof 
Sandy Shultz
Biswadev Mitra

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