The Liverpool BRAIN (Brain Research Advanced Imaging Network)

Simon Keller (Director)

Dr Simon Keller

Dr Simon Keller is a Senior Lecturer in Imaging Neuroscience in the Institute of Translational Medicine at the University of Liverpool. Simon has expertise in medical neuroimaging applications particularly, but not exclusively, in epilepsy. He has particular interest in how advanced imaging methods can be applied in neurological disorders to:

  • provide insights into causative neurobiological mechanisms
  • predict patient outcome after medical or surgical treatment
  • further understand cognitive impairment
  • help improve diagnostic assessments

Simon leads the Liverpool BRAIN, is involved in several research projects as PI or Co-I funded by the MRC, ERUK and NIHR, is a committee member of the Epilepsy Research UK Scientific Advisory Panel, NIHR Champion of Imaging for the Northwest CRN and elected Fellow of the Anatomical Society.

Email: simon.keller@liv.ac.uk

Staff webpage: https://www.liverpool.ac.uk/translational-medicine/staff/simon-keller/


Barbara Kreilkamp (Post-Doctoral Research Associate)

Barbara Kreilkamp Dr Barbara Kreilkamp is a Post-Doctoral Research Associate in the Institute of Translational Medicine with an overarching interest in the development and application of quantitative MRI techniques in epilepsy. Barbara has experience in structural and functional MRI analysis and is currently working on (i) the ERUK funded project “EpiBioNet: Identifying imaging network biomarkers of antiepileptic drug treatment outcome” and (ii) the development of software tools to automatically identify brain lesions causing epilepsy on MRI. Barbara acquires data at LiMRIC and the Walton Centre NHS Foundation Trust.

Email: B.Kreilkamp@liverpool.ac.uk


Christophe de Bezenac (Post-Doctoral Research Associate)

Christophe de BezenacDr Christophe de Bezenac is a Post-Doctoral Research Associate in the Institute of Translational Medicine with an interest in the development and application of quantitative functional and diffusion MRI techniques to study brain-behaviour relationships in health and disease. Christophe is currently working on the MRC funded project “Brain connectivity at epilepsy diagnosis: markers of cognitive dysfunction and pharmacoresistance” and acquires data at LiMRIC and the Walton Centre NHS Foundation Trust.

Email: cedb@liverpool.ac.uk


Guleed Adan (Clinical Research Fellow)

Guleed AdanDr Guleed Adan is an adult neurology specialist trainee at the Walton Centre NHS Foundation Trust and a clinical research fellow in the Institute of Translational Medicine. Guleed is working on the Association of British Neurologists and the Guarantors of Brain funded project “Predicting seizure recurrence following first unprovoked seizure”. Guleed is an aspiring epileptologist and has an interest in improving the early diagnosis of epilepsy and the development of multi-modal, non-invasive biomarkers to appropriately prognosticate and risk stratify patients following their first seizure. Guleed acquires data at LiMRIC and sees patients at the Walton Centre NHS Foundation Trust.

Email: guleed@liverpool.ac.uk


Lorna Bryant (PhD Student)

Lorna BryantLorna Bryant is a full-time PhD student working on an MRC DiMeN DTP funded project that uses advanced MRI techniques to identify the imaging correlates of failed seizure control after anti-epileptic drug treatment in people with epilepsy. Of particular interest is advanced diffusion MRI methods to disassociate intra-axonal and extra-axonal pathology and investigation of the relationship between central (brain MRI) and peripheral (blood) markers of inflammation. Lorna acquires data at LiMRIC.

Email: lbryant@liverpool.ac.uk


Yachin Chen (PhD Student)

Yachin ChenYachin Chen is a full-time PhD student working with imaging data of people with epilepsy acquired at the Walton Centre NHS Foundation Trust. Yachin’s main focus is the application of advanced DTI and resting-state functional MRI methods in people with generalised and focal epilepsy. Yachin has a particular interest in brain structural and functional connectivity and uses these methods to probe circumscribed network alterations (e.g. thalamocortical connectivity) in people with epilepsy.

Email: chen0715@liverpool.ac.uk


Nicola Leek (PhD Student, Research Assistant)

Nicola Leek Nicola Leek is a part-time PhD student who is investigating the relationship between genomic risk factors and quantitative neuroimaging findings in people with epilepsy. She is also a part-time research assistant on the MRC funded project “Brain connectivity at epilepsy diagnosis: markers of cognitive dysfunction and pharmacoresistance” and acquires neuropsychological data in people with a new diagnosis of epilepsy. Nicola acquires data at LiMRIC for the MRC project and at the Walton Centre NHS Foundation Trust for her PhD.

Email: nleek@liverpool.ac.uk


Andrea McKavanagh (PhD Student)

Andrea McKavanaghAndrea McKavanagh is a full-time PhD student working on an MRC DiMeN DTP funded project that focuses on the development of network imaging biomarkers of anti-epileptic drug treatment outcome in people with generalised and postsurgical outcome in people with refractory focal epilepsy. Andrea is applying network-based statistical, graph theoretical and machine learning approaches to DTI and resting-state fMRI data collected at the Walton Centre NHS Foundation Trust.

Email: A.Mckavanagh@liverpool.ac.uk


Daniel Brownhill (PhD Student)

Daniel BrownhilDaniel Brownhill is a full-time PhD student working on a multi-modal MRI and EEG project in people with newly diagnosed epilepsy funded by The Walton Centre NHS Foundation Trust and the Institute of Translational Medicine at the University of Liverpool. The overarching theme of Daniel’s work is to use MRI and EEG data acquired in patients who have been recruited into the SANAD-II trial to identify prognostic markers of anti-epileptic drug treatment outcome in people with newly diagnosed epilepsy. Daniel acquires data at the Walton Centre NHS Foundation Trust.

Email: hldbrown@student.liverpool.ac.uk


Erika Bersan (Senior Lecturer, PhD Student)

Erika BersanErika Bersan is a Senior Lecturer in Small Animal Neurology at the Small Animal Teaching Hospital, University of Liverpool. She is a European Specialist in Veterinary Neurology (Dip ECVN) with clinical interests in complications arising in animals undertaking anti-epileptic medications, intervertebral disc disease and spinal surgery. Erika is also a part-time PhD student working on a project that uses MRI morphometric and DTI techniques to determine brain abnormalities in canines with idiopathic epilepsy. Erika acquires data at the Small Animal Teaching Hospital.

Email: erikab@liverpool.ac.uk


Cory Hooper (PhD Student)

Cory HooperCory Hooper is a full-time PhD student working on the neuropsychological profiling and quantitative MRI analysis in patients with herpes simplex encephalitis. Much of Cory’s work is performed in context of the DexEnceph UK national trial.

Email: hlchoope@student.liverpool.ac.uk


Jamie Burgess (PhD Student)

Jamie BurgessJamie Burgess is a full-time PhD student. Amongst several novel investigations, Jamie is using morphometric MRI and DTI approaches to identify brain neurodegeneration in patients with diabetes. An important goal of Jamie’s work is to determine if there is a relationship between retinal nerve thinning and quantitative measures of brain degeneration in these patients.

Email: Jamie.Burgess@liverpool.ac.uk