Neuroepidemiology

Research Overview

The Neuroepidemiology Unit (NEU) at the Centre for Epidemiology and Biostatistics was formed in 2015, building on the international profile in multiple sclerosis prevention of its head, Professor George Jelinek. The NEU has developed novel methods of accessing unique preventive medicine data from large communities of people with MS utilising Web 2.0 platforms, including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and various websites and forums. It leads research into the potential for lifestyle-based preventive medicine approaches to reducing the disease burden of MS nationally and internationally.

The NEU conducts a number of studies related to primary and secondary prevention of MS. These include: the longitudinal HOLISM Study (Health Outcomes and Lifestyle In a Sample of people with MS) of around 2,500 people with MS from 57 countries, followed up at 2.5 yearly intervals from baseline in 2012, and the STOP-MS Study (Studying Outcomes Of People attending MS programs) following several hundred people with MS who have attended residential community education programs on MS prevention at 1, 3, 5, 10 and 20 years from attendance, including examination of the lifestyle behaviours of a subset of that group. The NEU is also planning to design and conduct randomised controlled trials examining novel methods of delivery of lifestyle-based secondary and tertiary preventive measures, including web-based educational applications; qualitative studies of preventive medicine aspects of the health of people with MS and their partners; and other studies developed in discussion with the Unit’s Scientific Advisory Group.

The NEU is a multidisciplinary team with medical doctors, psychologists, biostatisticians, and public health researchers. It is currently funded largely by philanthropic donations.

Centre for Epidemiology and Biostatistics contact details

Level 3, 207 Bouverie Street
Melbourne School of Population and Global Health
The University of Melbourne
Victoria, 3010, Australia

Tel: +61 3 8344 0637

Email: epi-info@unimelb.edu.au

Staff

Funding

Professor George Jelinek (unit head)

Zoe Aitken

Chelsea Brown

Dr Alysha De Livera

Dr Claudia Marck

Taylor Mills

Dr Sandra Neate

Emily O'Kearney

Dr Keryn Taylor

Dr Tracey Weiland