Defining predictors of clinical and axonal outcomes after optic neuritis in patients at high risk of developing multiple sclerosis

Research Opportunity
Honours, Master of Biomedical Science
Project Status
Medicine and Radiology
Royal Melbourne Hospital
Supervisor Email Number Webpage
Dr Anneke van der Walt Personal web page
A/Prof Tomas Kalincik +61 3 93424404 Personal web page

Project Details

Optic neuritis is a common first manifestation of multiple sclerosis. Although the outcome after optic neuritis is generally good, even minimal residual visual impairment can result in decreased quality of life. In addition, the optic nerve often suffers permanent axonal damage and measurement of this nerve injury could be useful in developing and testing new treatments aimed at neuroprotection in MS. Both functional and structural changes in the optic nerve after optic neuritis can now be measured by sensitive technologies such as optical coherence tomography (OCT), multi-focal visual evoked potentials and advanced MRI techniques.

This project aims to develop a predictive model of clinical and axonal recovery using a hierarchical clustering (decision tree) analysis to determine which factors are the most predictive of outcomes 6 and 12 months after optic neuritis. The data has been collected in a cohort of 44 patients who was studied comprehensively for 12 months after a first episode of optic neuritis. This project will suit students with interest in statistics and health outcomes research. During the project, you will improve your statistical skills, learning some of the more complex statistical techniques. Knowledge of elementary statistics is a requisite. You will contribute to the evidence-based clinical management of multiple sclerosis.

Faculty Research Themes


School Research Themes

Neuroscience & Psychiatry

Research Opportunities

Honours, Master of Biomedical Science
Graduate Research Students who are interested in joining this project will need to consider their elegibility as well as other Graduate Research requirements before contacting the supervisor of this research

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Key Contact

For further information about this research, please contact a supervisor.


Medicine and Radiology

Research Group / Unit / Centre

CORe Unit (Clinical Outcomes Research Unit)

Research Node

Royal Melbourne Hospital

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