Bradford Clark Dickerson, M.D.
|Title||Associate Professor of Neurology|
|Institution||Massachusetts General Hospital|
|Address||Massachusetts General Hospital|
Gerontology Research Unit, Suite 2691
149 13th Street
Charlestown MA 02129
My research seeks to understand the neuroanatomic and neurophysiologic substrates of memory function in health and disease. I use structural and functional neuroimaging tools to study healthy younger and older individuals and those with cognitive impairment, including Alzheimer's disease and frontotemporal dementias. I have identified in vivo anatomic and physiologic correlates of memory function, and have begun to translate some of these measures into potential biomarkers of Alzheimer's disease. In particular, I was the first to report the observation that some individuals with mild cognitive impairment, the first symptomatic phase of Alzheimer's disease prior to dementia, demonstrate hyperactivation of memory-related brain regions, which may be an indication of attempted physiologic compensation for pathologic change. We are currently working heavily in the area of frontotemporal dementia, language (both semantics and syntax), affective and social behavior, and are aiming to identify behavioral and brain imaging markers of abnormalities in these disorders as well. I hope that these markers will be useful for identifying individuals who would be candidates for clinical trials of novel therapies for Alzheimer's disease and related neurodegenerative disorders. I have recently begun a series of clinical research studies investigating the brain-behavioral basis of frontotemporal dementias, one aim of which will be to translate these cognitive-behavioral and imaging measures into biomarkers. I teach at a local and national level on the topics of behavioral neurology, memory function, Alzheimer's disease, and magnetic resonance imaging. I mentor students, research assistants, neurology and psychiatry residents and fellows, and neurology, psychiatry, and radiology junior faculty on research methods and career development. In my weekly clinic, I see patients with disorders of behavior and cognition (including many patients with neurodegenerative dementias). I seek to identify clinical problems that I can pursue through my research, and attempt to use the insights I gain through research to provide better clinical care. FInally, I take care of patients and supervise residents through a month of hospital service each year.
Available: 10/31/12, Expires: 10/31/13
We have a large existing dataset of neuroimaging data and behavioral and symptom measures in patients with various forms of dementia particularly including Frontotemporal Dementia and Primary Progressive Aphasia as well as early and late onset Alzheimer's disease. The student would work with Dr. Dickerson to develop a specific hypothesis and then would perform analyses of data and write up the manuscript.
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