Coordinated approach to integrate neurodegenerative diseases data from all real world clinical and research sources  across Scotland

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Dr Mario Parra Rodriguez

Mario is a Lecturer in Psychology at the University of Strathclyde, Glasgow and member of the Scottish Dementia Research Consortium Executive Committee. 

Mario graduated as a Medical Doctor in 1993 and as a Clinical Neurophysiologist in 1997. He worked at the Cuban Neuroscience Centre and at different University Hospitals in Cuba and in Colombia. During his clinical work he focused on neuropsychological and neurophysiological aspects of dementia syndromes and other neurological disorders and taught neuroscience related subjects in the field of medicine and psychology.


Mario's motivation for teaching and research led me to a major career change into academia. This started with his PhD in 2005 at the University of Edinburgh and continued with three Postdoctoral Fellowships and a position as a Clinical Studies Officer within the NHS Scotland. Mario was as an Assistant Professor in Psychology at Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh from 2015 until 2018 before joining the University of Strathclyde. 

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Dr Amir Dehservi

Amir is a researcher developing automatic methods for detecting (brain imaging, speech, etc.) biomarkers for neurodegenerative diseases, such as Parkinson's disease and Alzheimer's disease, by considering the novel application of Evolutionary Algorithms.


In his position as a Research Fellow at teh University of Aberdeen Biomedical Imaging Centre, Amir is working with a multidisciplinary team of clinicians and scientists who are focused upon unravelling the mechanisms of chronic fatigue, a salient issue across the chronic disease spectrum. Specifically, he is looking into the analysis and understanding of a multi-modal MRI/fMRI brain study, using machine learning techniques (including Evolutionary Algorithms), in order to characterise the mediators of fatigue in patients with rheumatoid arthritis among other diseases.

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Dr Norman Alm

Norman is an Honorary Research Fellow in Computing at Dundee University. His most recent research areas are computer-based communication support for people with dementia and their carers and computer-based games usable by people with dementia.


Norman was part of a multidisciplinary group that developed CIRCA, a system for supported reminiscence conversations for people with dementia. The same group also developed the Living in the Moment (LIM) games, which were playable without the need for working memory.  CIRCA and LIM were taken to the market through a spin-out company. 


The BBC RemArc (Reminiscence Archive) system was inspired by CIRCA. 


Currently Norman is advising on a project to explore the use of ambient everyday sounds to stimulate reminiscence conversations in people with dementia.

Archie Campbell

Archie joined Generation Scotland as Data Analyst / Programmer in 2007, after 15 years in commercial software development. He subsequently became Data Manager, then overall Project Manager. Archie is now Generation Scotland Chief Technology Officer

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Dr Sammy Danso

Sammy is a Research Fellow in applied Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Data Science at the University of Edinburgh Dementia Prevention. Prior to joining the Dementia Prevention group, Sammy held a number of post-doctoral research positions within the University of Edinburgh and Newcastle University focusing on application of AI to a variety of problems. He also worked for the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. 

Sammy holds a PhD in Artificial Intelligence from the University of Leeds. He also has a background in Software Engineering and has extensive experience developing systems to facilitate large-scale epidemiological and clinical studies. 

His research interest is in the area of application of AI and Big Data technologies to Brain Health research with particular focus on dementia and healthy aging. This involves developing novel machine learning approaches that utilise low-cost multi-modal data obtained from a variety of sources, including natural language to detect brain health issues and the modifiable risk factors responsible in order to improve the utility of AI technologies globally. 


Research to discover or improve methods to allow neurodegenerative diseases to be detected earlier and more accurately.



The foundation for the development of 

effective treatments for neurodegenerative diseases

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Improving our understanding of all aspects of dementia care and caring

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Focussing on the prevention of neurodegenerative diseases and their progression to develop symptoms as observed in dementia