Title of PhD: Cognitive Assessment of Paediatric Neurodegenerative Disease
Supervisor: Dr Andrew Olson
My research interests include the neuropsychological & neurophysiological assessment of metabolic neurodegenerative disease in children. These are a large and complex class of genetic disorders that result from the inactivity of one or more specific enzymes which are necessary in the normal development of the central nervous system. The primary aim is to explore the cognitive homogeneity and define the developmental trajectories within and across these disorders.
This is achieved through the construction of a neuropsychological test battery, designed specifically for children with metabolic disorders, which taps four cognitive domains: Memory, Language, Attention, and Motor Function. Establishing a test battery which is sensitivity to both developmental and neurodegenerative change is vital for assessing the impact of emerging novel therapies on improving cognitive function.
Allen, H., Ledgeway, T., Kelly, N., Hutchinson, C., Blundell, J. (2011), Divided attention impairs motion perception in older adults. Journal of Vision. Vol 11. Art 97.
Ban, H., Blundell, J., Welchman, A. (2011), Translating from local disparities to surface slant in the human visual cortex. Journal of Vision. Vol 11. Art 42
Blundell, J., Olson, A. (2012). Cognitive Assessment of Paediatric Neurodegenerative Disease: Morquio Syndrome (MPS IVa). Bham Uni Post Conference
Blundell, J., Kearney, S., Gissen, P., Hendriksz, C., Vijay, S., Chakrapani, A., Frisson, S., Olson, A. (2013), Measuring cognitive effects of metabolic disease using eyemovements. Molecular Genetics and Metabolism. 108: 25
Blundell, J., Kearney, S., Horton, J., Olson, A., Chakrapani, A. (2013), Visual attention in children with Morquio syndrome. Molecular Genetics and Metabolism. 108: 25