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Roman Bauer discusses UK Biobank as Newcastle Centre Scans 10,000th Participant

As the UK Biobank scanned its 10,000th participant, Dr Roman Bauer was interviewed by the BBC about how he uses its data.

The UK Biobank imaging study (the largest in the world) has scanned over 41k participants. The Newcastle centre imaged its 10,000th participant on 17th July.

Dr Bauer's team and collaborators (including the Scimpulse foundation, www.scimpulse.org) use images gathered by the UK Biobank in their computational work.

They are currently analysing images from the retina (the tissue lining the back of the eye), in order to assess using Machine Learning & Artificial Intelligence algorithms whether these could be used as biomarkers for various conditions. They are particularly interested in certain neurological disorders, such as Parkinson’s disease or Alzheimer’s disease.

Dr Bauer said "We investigate whether the images can be associated with brain structural changes as measured with MRI, to have a quick and practical way to diagnose such brain disorders. The UK Biobank is an excellent database for this, given the large number of relevant participants and diagnoses, ensuring high confidence in our results."

In a recent publication, Dr Bauer's team show that we can use MRI/DTI data to model changes in the brain during Alzheimer’s disease progression, and also diagnose Alzheimer’s disease potentially several years earlier than what is currently possible. 

The UK Biobank featured on BBC Look North and also on the Charlie Charlton Show on 17th July. The radio show is available to listen to until the 18th August 2019:  https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p07dn894

UK Biobank

published on: 9 August 2019