When: Thursday 3 August 2021
What time: 12-1pm BST
Where: Online (Zoom Webinar)

This event will focus on the vital connection points between nerve cells in the brain – synapses. You’ll have a chance to hear from two scientists from our Scotland Research Network, who will discuss research underway at the University of Edinburgh and University of Glasgow. They will share how synapses store information in the brain, and how they are damaged in Alzheimer’s and other dementias. They will discuss how their work is paving the way to potential new treatments for Alzheimer’s, that can help restore and protect synapses and offering benefits to those living with the disease.

As well as talking about their research, they will answer your questions during the Q&A session.

The event will take place on Zoom, and is free to attend. It is open to everyone, and no previous knowledge of dementia or research is required.


Prof Tara Spires-Jones

Prof Tara Spires-Jones is the Deputy Director at the Centre for Discovery Brain Sciences and UK Dementia Research Institute Group Leader at the University of Edinburgh. In dementia, memory declines because synapses and neurons become dysfunctional and die. Prof Spires-Jones leads a team of researchers working to understand how synapses die, in order to develop effective strategies to prevent or treat Alzheimer’s disease. She will share some of the groups’ latest discoveries linking Alzheimer’s risk genes to synapse vulnerability.

Sarah Hesse

Sarah Hesse is a PhD student at the Centre for Translational Pharmacology, University of Glasgow. She will talk about her research into a key player at synapse connection points, called the M1 receptor. Her work in the lab has found that activating this receptor using new types of drugs can help to restore communication at synapses, in mice with features of Alzheimer’s disease. She will share how this work could lead to new treatments that can reconnect nerve cells, and benefit people with Alzheimer’s disease.

For more information or questions about the event, please email the Public Engagement team

If you have accessibility requirements, please get in touch and we’ll do what we can to help you