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Approved research

Investigating the diabetes-related metabolic and vascular risk factors that contribute to functional & neurodegeneration brain ageing

Principal Investigator: Dr Bradley MacIntosh
Approved Research ID: 55623
Approval date: April 8th 2020

Lay summary

Diabetes affects many lives of many across the globe. Unfortunately, people with diabetes tend to more likely to suffer a stroke. Among stroke survivors, diabetes appears to be a barrier to recovery. People living with diabetes also appear to be more at risk of problems with memory. The complications of diabetes on the brain appear numerous. These diabetes-to-brain relationships are not fully understood and require further investigation. In this project, we will test whether small-sized brain lesions, often resulting in subtle neurological symptoms, are a key element on how diabetes influences the brain. This line of research will help us understand whether there are certain aspects of diabetes that are more problematic to the health of the brain. To pursue this research with an improved and precise clinical assessment, we would need a large sample size that can enable us to carefully consider diabetes in relation to the metabolic syndrome (e.g. high blood pressure, obesity, and lipids). We will use images of the brain that are used to depict lesions. We will use a separate set of functional images to study the brain connections that are part of the brain's overall function. We will also evaluate the cognitive impacts of diabetes on the behaviour by measuring the outcomes of different cognitive tests and assessments. This will provide further insight into the effect of the diabetic population in their daily tasks.