Rachel’s primary research interests and background encompass the investigation of schizophrenia and psychosis, with particular emphasis on the importance of symptom dimensions and outcomes.
Current projects include:
HuSH: How we Understand Hallucinations. Charitable Trust Funded Study £32,000. C.I. Dr Rachel Upthegrove 2013-2015 Using phenomenological interviews and ethnographic diary methods, the AVH study aims to gain a deeper insight of the experience of hearing voices. The techniques used for data collection have previously been shown to encourage reflexive thinking and foster open discussion. Results obtained will inform further qualitative and neuroimaging work to explore whether themes emerging from this phenomenological approach map onto our current understanding of the biological processes underpinning AVH in schizophrenia and non-psychotic illness.
BioPoP: Biological correlates of dimensional symptoms of psychosis. C.I. Rachel Upthegrove. This study aims to discover whether neuroimaging and cellular biomarkers can be identified for specific symptom dimensions in first episode psychosis. This has important implications for the accurate early identification of patients with poor prognosis and the development of novel, targeted, treatments.
PRONIA: EU FP7 Funded: Personalised Prognostic Tools for Early Psychosis Management. C.I. Nikos Koutsolerious. PRONIA will use routine brain imaging and complementary data to optimise candidate biomarkers for the prediction and staging of psychoses and aim to generate a prognostic system that generalises well across different mental health services. We will also implement new multi-modal risk quantification tools to predict mental health-related disability in young help-seekers. The fusion of these tools with clinical knowledge will produce cybernetic prognostic services that accurately identify help-seekers at the highest risk of psychosis, poor functioning and suicide-related mortality. More information available here.
ECLIPSE/CIRCUITS: NIHR PGfAR funded Building Resilience and Recovery through Enhancing Cognition and quality of Life in the early PSychosEs (ECLIPSE) - Study 9: Implementation of Cognitive Remediation into Early Intervention. C.I. Til Wykes and Eileen Joyce. More information available here.