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Dr Melissa Farnham has been awarded a Project Grant by the Rebecca L Cooper Foundation for her research investigating the role of the brain in the development of cardiometabolic diseases in people with obstructive sleep apnoea.

Obstructive sleep apnoea (OSA) is a highly prevalent condition characterised by intermittent episodes of hypoxia (deprivation of oxygen to the brain) during sleep.

Peo­ple with OSA are extreme­ly like­ly to also have high blood pres­sure and dia­betes, both major risk fac­tors for car­dio­vas­cu­lar dis­ease,” Dr Farn­ham states.

“Only some patients with OSA benefit from current treatments and many are at risk of life-threatening heart attacks or stroke.”

Dr Farnham’s project ‘Is a brain peptide sympathetically driving cardio-metabolic dysfunction following intermittent hypoxia?’ focuses on how intermittent stimulation of brain circuits regulate blood glucose and blood pressure.

It would open the excit­ing pos­si­bil­i­ty of com­ple­ment­ing cur­rent treat­ment with a new ther­a­peu­tic strat­e­gy to man­age dis­ease pro­gres­sion,” says Dr Farnham.

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