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4 Nov 2015

New research project into blood test for early diagnosis of neurodegenerative disorders

From left: Dr Platt, Dr Sivakumaran, Matthew Healey and Dr William Rowe.

Loughborough University scientists have begun a research project with Peterborough City Hospital into a new blood test for the early diagnosis of neurodegenerative disorders.

The research, set up as part of a PhD studentship, will focus on using nanotechnology to develop a diagnostic kit for screening neurodegenerative disorders, such as Alzheimer’s disease, that result in the progressive loss of brain function and mobility.

Matthew Healey has been appointed by Loughborough University to undertake the research with the Pathology Department at Peterborough City Hospital.

He said: “I’ve studied analytical chemistry, so I’m thrilled to be given the opportunity to use my knowledge and expertise to develop the diagnostic test using the state-of-the-art laboratories at Peterborough City Hospital. I’m confident that this collaborative project will produce ground-breaking results.”

Dr Mark Platt, from the Department of Chemistry at Loughborough University, said: “The project hopes to test, develop and embed the protocols we have developed at Loughborough into an assay for screening prion disease. This collaboration ensures that the programme is continuously aligned and tested to the standards of the NHS, and that's an exciting prospect that we hope will deliver a high impact result.” 

Dr Muttuswamy Sivakumaran, Consultant Haematologist and Chairman of the Trust Research and Development Committee, added: “We are all very excited about this new research collaboration.”

Notes for editors

Article reference number: November News

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Loughborough is one of the country’s leading universities, with an international reputation for research that matters, excellence in teaching, strong links with industry, and unrivalled achievement in sport and its underpinning academic disciplines.

It has been awarded five stars in the independent QS Stars university rating scheme, putting it among the best universities in the world, and was named University of the Year in the What Uni Student Choice Awards 2015.Loughborough is consistently ranked in the top twenty of UK universities in the Times Higher Education’s ‘table of tables’ and is in the top 10 in England for research intensity. It was 2nd in the 2015 THE Student Experience Survey and was named Sports University of the Year 2013-14 by The Times and Sunday Times. In recognition of its contribution to the sector, Loughborough has been awarded seven Queen's Anniversary Prizes.

In September 2015 the University opened an additional academic campus in London’s new innovation quarter. Loughborough University London, based on the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, offers postgraduate and executive-level education, as well as research and enterprise opportunities.