Neurolgical Foundation of New Zealand

Official partner to Brain Awareness Week

Brain Awareness Week



Dr Rebekah Blakemore - Click here for more info

Rebekah completed a BSc at the University of Auckland majoring in Sport and Exercise Science. After seeking a change in pace and location Rebekah moved to Dunedin to complete her postgraduate studies at the University of Otago. Her Postgraduate Diploma and Master’s degree were completed in the Physical Education, Sport and Exercise Science Department, and […]

  • Neurological Foundation Repatriation Fellow, 2014

  • University of Otago, Christchurch
Rebekah Blakemore

Professor Dirk De Ridder - Click here for more info

New Zealand’s first Professor of Neurosurgery, Dirk De Ridder, is well underway with plans to make the University of Otago a world-leading academic neurosurgery unit. Professor Dirk De Ridder holds the position of the inaugural Neurological Foundation Chair of Neurosurgery at the University of Otago. Formerly a neurosurgeon at one of Belgium’s leading hospitals, Antwerp […]

  • Neurological Foundation Professor of Neurosurgery

  • University of Otago
Dirk De Ridder casual FOR web Feb 2013

Dr Owen Jones - Click here for more info

  • Postdoctoral Fellow

  • Department of Psychology, University of Otago
Owen Jones

Dr Karl Iremonger - Click here for more info

Dr Karl Iremonger is a lecturer and researcher within the University of Otago’s Department of Physiology, where he leads a team inside Otago’s Centre for Neuroendocrinology, (the largest group in the Southern Hemisphere that focuses on neurosection and the physiological interaction between the central nervous system and the endocrine system). Karl was awarded the Prime […]

  • Lecturer

  • Department of Physiology, University of Otago
Karl Iremonger

Dr Jessie Jacobsen - Click here for more info

In 2004, Dr Jessie Jacobsen received a Top Achiever Doctoral Scholarship to complete a PhD on Huntington’s disease at The University of Auckland. Her doctoral research won her the MacDiarmid Young Scientist of the Year award in 2007. Following the completion of her PhD she received a Neurological Foundation Philip Wrightson Postdoctoral Fellowship to study […]

  • Neuroscientist

  • School of Biological Sciences, The University of Auckland
Jessie & Russell

Dr Tracy Melzer - Click here for more info

Dr Tracy Melzer is MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) Research Manager at the New Zealand Brain Research Institute (NZBRI) in Christchurch. He works within the Parkinson’s disease research group that has recruited one of the world’s largest single-centre cohorts of well-characterised Parkinson’s disease (PD) patients with MRI data. This cohort is unique and is the result […]

  • Neurological Foundation Philip Wrightson Postdoctoral Fellow 2014

  • Department of Medicine, The University of Otago, Christchurch

Mandana Ghodratipour - Click here for more info

The Neurological Foundation’s first Gillespie Postgraduate Scholar, Ms Ghodratipour is fascinated by the topic of cell reprogramming (the process of transforming a particular cell type into a different cell type), and its applications for the study of Huntington’s disease (HD). HD is a genetic neurological disorder characterised by progressive loss of specific brain cells with […]

  • Inaugural Neurological Foundation Gillespie Postgraduate Scholar, 2013

  • Department of Pharmacology and Clinical Pharmacology, University of Auckland

Dr Louise Parr-Brownlie - Click here for more info

Dr Louise Parr-Brownlie’s research focuses on the neural mechanisms that underlie voluntary movements and the movement deficits of Parkinson’s disease. Louise works as a neurophysiologist and lecturer in the University of Otago’s Brain Health Research Centre and is one of an exclusive group of researchers dotted around the world working in the midst of a […]

  • Neurophysiologist and lecturer

  • Department of Anatomy, University of Otago

Mrs Angela Caughey - Click here for more info

Mrs Angela Caughey was born in Auckland where she still lives today. She survived being the youngest of five children, played several sports to representative level, was a bookworm, married, raised a family and broke in farm land to create a garden and tennis court, and worked in community education before she did an extra-mural […]

  • Author


Dr Lisa Smith - Click here for more info

Dr Lisa Smith was awarded the Neurological Foundation Miller Postgraduate Scholarship in 2009 to complete her study at Otago University which focused on Parkinson’s disease (PD) and the effects of fluctuations in dopamine which could be linked to abnormal movements. Lisa was a former Dux of St. Marys College Wellington, where she established her love […]

  • Postdoctoral Fellow

  • Anatomy Department, School of Medical Sciences, University of Otago
Lisa Smith