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By joining the UK DRI you’ll belong to a team of fantastic researchers, technical specialists and professional support staff passionate about accelerating the discovery, development and delivery of interventions that will help diagnose, treat and ultimately prevent dementia, directly benefitting people affected by dementia, their carers, families and the community.

We’re looking for brilliant people with diverse perspectives. Together our unique contributions will transform the range and pace of research on dementia. You’ll be supported by the very best tools and resources and join a culture that encourages high risk/reward science and sharing of ideas.

We are a vibrant, ambitious and interactive community. We offer opportunities at all career levels for scientists and support staff in our seven centres across the UK, as well as in our London-based HQ team.

We’re always interested in hearing from people as passionate about our mission as we are. To find out more about working at the UK DRI or our current opportunities, please contact us at

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UK DRI at Cardiff University

From gene to function: hunting for new treatment targets across Alzheimer's, Parkinson's and Huntington's disease.

  • Specialisms at Cardiff
  • Disease mechanisms building on genetic evidence including; risk profiles; pathways and networks associated with Alzheimer's disease, Huntington(s) diseases and other dementias
  • Immunity
  • Lipid processing
  • Endocytosis
  • ApoE
  • Read more about Cardiff

    Professor Julie Williams and colleagues at Cardiff University have discovered over 27 risk genes for dementia which implicate the innate immune response in determining a person’s susceptibility to developing Alzheimer’s disease. Building on their world-class expertise in genetics and immunology, the UK DRI at Cardiff University uses these discoveries as the starting point for understanding disease mechanisms and producing new therapies.

    The team uses cellular and animal models to understand the function of risk genes implicated in two major areas of immunity: microglia cells and the complement system. They study the involvement of complement proteins in the loss of synapses and cell death in Alzheimer’s disease and describe how Alzheimer’s risk genes affect the production and activation of microglia in the brain.

    An additional programme of work develops novel mathematical approaches to the study of dementia that will be shared with by all members of the UK DRI. This work is developing models for stratifying dementia risk and statistical tools for identifying patterns in large biological ‘omics’ data sets.

    UK DRI at Cardiff University is located in the Hadyn Ellis building on the Innovation campus, with access to state of the art facilities within the Cardiff University Dementia Research Network.

Apply for latest jobs at Cardiff

  • Research Associate, UK DRI at Cardiff & UK DRI at UCL (Cross Centre)

    The UK DRI’s Cross-Centre Postdoctoral Programme is designed to simultaneously fund exciting emerging science and to foster intra-UK DRI collaboration through support of a postdoctoral position based across two UK DRI sites. This position offers a unique opportunity to leverage the UK DRI’s cross-institutional strengths. Applications are invited for a Research Associate in Neuroinflammation/Complement Biology to work on an exciting biomarkers study entitled ‘Profiling complement markers in blood using neuronal-derived extracellular vesicles in FTD.’ In this comprehensive study we will measure several complement biomarkers and markers of neuroinflammation and cell origin in plasma, CSF and neuronal-derived extracellular vesicles (EVs) extracted from plasma samples. EVs represent a compartment in the blood reflecting changes in the brain enabling assessment of brain changes in inflammatory markers such as complement proteins. The primary aim is to deliver a comprehensive data package on the roles of the complement pathway in frontotemporal dementia (FTD) using these biomarkers approaches. The data will help identify mechanisms and therapeutic strategies to modulate complement dysregulation in the disease. The post-holder will be based in the UK DRI at Cardiff in the labs of Prof B. Paul Morgan and Dr Wioleta Zelek, but will spend up to 6 months in year 1 at UK DRI at UCL with Dr Aitana Sogorb-Esteve optimising methods for extracellular vesicle (EV) extraction. Subsequently, they will undertake regular visits to perform specific analyses at UCL during the three-year period. Ref: 15481BR, Closing date: 27 November 2022

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  • Research Associate, UK DRI at Cardiff - Beccano-Kelly lab

    We have an exciting opportunity to appoint an enthusiastic and experienced post-doctoral researcher to join the Beccano-Kelly research group within the UK DRI at Cardiff. The candidate will use optogenetics to dissect the relationship between synaptic function and lysosomal activity, elucidating the impact of genetic mutations which cause late-onset Parkinson’s. The laboratory’s aim is to assess the earliest changes in Parkinson’s disease (PD), focussing on synaptic activity, in the context of the temporality of PD. Using cutting-edge techniques, tools and models (including cell culture of stem cells, high throughput confocal technology, multi-electrode array) and innovative design, we aim to generate a pathophysiological timeline identifying the most important phenotypes and how they can be modulated to prevent late-stage degeneration. Ref: 15362BR, Closing date: 30 November 2022

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  • PhD Studentship, UK DRI at Cardiff - Beccano-Kelly lab

    The UK DRI at Cardiff is delighted to offer a Parkinson's UK funded PhD Studentship for the project titled, "Disruption at the synapse: Investigation into the relationship of the dysfunctional autolysosomal pathway and synaptic activity as an initial change in Parkinson’s" in Dr Dayne Beccano-Kelly's lab. We are looking for a highly motivated scientist interested in investigating synaptic function and neurotransmitter release; the fundamental roles of a neuron. Control of these functions are complex and still being unraveled. Application deadline: 5 December 2022

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Latest tweets from @UKDRI

RT @UCLBrainScience: The Dementia Research Charity #Chatathon is a 12+ hour non-stop livestream discussion, hosted by Adam Smith @BetterRes
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In #WorldAlzheimersMonth we hosted the 2nd annual 'Making it Brain', a virtual free STEM conference for students ag…
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