Amy Gillespie



Biography

My research interests focus on schizophrenia, specifically, differentiating subtypes of schizophrenia, such as treatment-resistant schizophrenia. This falls within the Neuropsychiatry theme of the Clinical Disorders cluster. I have a particular interest in the personalised medicine objective, looking at pharmacogenetics of treatment response and understanding the epigenetic mechanisms involved.

I applied for the BRC/U PhD studentship because of the projects available being so pertinent to my interests, and having the opportunity to study at a university with such a lively research community and fantastic clinical connections.

BSc in Psychology (First Class Honours), University of Southampton
MSc in Psychiatric Research (Distinction), King’s College London

Two positions as a voluntary research assistant
Two years’ experience as a health care assistant on a psychiatric intensive care unit
One year as an honorary assistant psychologist within SLaM

Currently Chair of the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience (IoPPN) Student Forum
GTA for the Psychology BSc course at Guy’s campus
Voluntary Communication Project Officer for the BRC Athena Swan team

Epigenetic effects of Clozapine: a PhD integrating clinical and genetic skills

My PhD project integrates a number of my research interests, investigating how patients with treatment-resistant schizophrenia respond to clozapine medication through analysis of epigenetic mechanisms.

In the TRIC study (part funded by the EU CRESTAR consortium) we are collecting baseline and follow-up data over six months, to establish longitudinal changes in DNA methylation after clozapine initiation and how these correlate with changes in symptoms and side effects.


Our research hopes to illuminate avenues for personalising prescription of clozapine medication and developing new drugs that use the same mechanism of action as clozapine. 

 

Supervisors

 

Dr James Maccabe, Professor Jonathan Mill and Dr Alice Egerton

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Psychosis & neuropsychiatry

Using knowledge gained from neuroscience research to improve the diagnosis, treatment and management of people with neuropsychiatric disorders, including psychoses and neurological diseases.
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Training & development

We aim to attract outstanding candidates with a range of experience and offer a variety of training schemes and secondment opportunities, spanning all academic career pathways.
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