past Talk

Mapping the Human Brain

Location marker iconWestmead Institute for Medical ResearchTime icon2023
With rates of response to current treatments for mental disorders at only 50%, there is a need for a new system of understanding and treating mental disorders that is underpinned by the observable workings of the brain
Dr Isabella Breukelaar

The ability to effectively treat and maintain mental health disorders is an international medical challenge. Currently we do not understand the biological cause of the cognitive and emotional symptoms that define these disorders. We know the brain changes over the course of a lifespan and that altered brain growth or rates of decline are implicated in a vast range of psychiatric, developmental and neurogenerative diseases. Dr Breukelaar uses advancements in magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to explore how brain regions work collectively in order to shed new light on the working of our brains.


Dr Isabella Breukelaar is a researcher and postdoctoral fellow at the Brain Dynamics Centre, Westmead Institute for Medical Research. She uses large multi-modal datasets to investigate the impact of trauma and trauma-related illness on the brain and the shared neurobiological features that occur across anxiety, depression and psychosis. She hopes to one day see brain imaging integrated within clinical practice to improve mental health outcomes.

Nina Earl is a curator and science communicator at Powerhouse Museum. She has extensive experience in the design and development of interdisciplinary exhibitions, including recent exhibitions Design for Life and Eucalyptusdom.



Westmead Institute for Medical Research
176 Hawkesbury Rd
Westmead NSW 2145


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15 August 2023


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