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Biography

Dr Latha Velayudhan is a Senior Clinical Lecturer and joined the Department of Old Age Psychiatry at the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience (IoPPN), Kings College London (KCL). Latha is also a Consultant Old Age Psychiatrist at the South London &Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust (SLaM) and leads the Lewisham Memory Service.

Latha is a clinician-academic with research interests in dementia, specifically Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Her main research work includes identification of biomarkers (clinical, blood and neuroimaging) for AD, young onset dementia, investigating risk factors for cognitive impairment and conducting clinical trials, currently using cannabinoid medications for neuropsychiatric symptoms in Alzheimer’s and Parkinson's disease, with the objective of translating the understanding and outcomes into routine clinical practice. Her clinical research interest also includes studying smell identification dysfunction in Alzheimer's dementia. With the aim to improve post-diagnostic care and support, she has led the design and development of mobile applications for people with dementia and carers including Young Onset Dementia (YOD) app which is available for free download from Apple and Google Play Store.

Latha completed MBBS at the Mysore Medical College, India and then undertook psychiatric training, obtaining a DPM (Psychiatry) and Diplomate of National Board (Psychiatry) at the National Institute of Mental Health & Neurosciences (NIMHANS), Bangalore, India. After coming to the UK in 2003, she completed higher specialist training at the SLaM, did MRC Preparatory Clinician Scientist Fellowship at the MRC Centre for Neurodegeneration and completed MD (Res) at the IoPPN, Kings College London. She then worked as Senior Clinical Research Fellow and consultant psychiatrist at the University of Leicester and Leicestershire Partnership NHS Trust (LPT), returning to KCL in 2017.

Awards:

  • Highly Commended award from the National Care Coordination Association Good Practice Awards for the Young Onset Dementia Mobile Application (YOD app) for the category “Innovation to Support Service Development”, 2016, Ellesmere Port, UK.
  • Highly Commended Excellent Idea/ Innovation Award for the YOD app at the Celebrating Excellence Awards 2016, LPT, UK. 
  • Lacey French Travel Award to attend and present at International Conference of Alzheimer’s Disease (ICAD) 2011, Paris, France.
  • Travel Fellowship awarded by the ICAD to attend and present at ICAD 2010 Honolulu, Hawaii, USA.
  • Travel award from Alzheimer’s Research Trust 2010. 
  • Denis Hill Prize 2008 proxime accessit, Institute of Psychiatry, KCL. 
  • MRC Preparatory Clinician Scientist Fellowship 2007.

Research Interests

  • Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias
  • Blood based biomarkers 
  • Clinical trials 
  • Mild cognitive impairment 
  • Neuropsychiatric symptoms 
  • Neuroimaging 
  • Olfaction

Research Groups

  • Department of Old Age Psychiatry 
  • Mental Health for Older Adults & Dementia CAG

Description

  • I teach medical students, MRCPsych students and lecture for MSc courses (Clinical Neuropsychiatry and Psychiatric Research) on topics related to dementia. 
  • I interview and examine medical students at the GKT School of Medicine. 
  • I supervise PhD students, BSc and MSc dissertations.