Dear AusDoCC family,

I am writing with some exciting news. I recently accepted a position as the Head of the Department of Neuroscience and the Edison Professor of Neurobiology at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, USA. This will come as a big surprise to many of you and I wanted to explain why I have accepted this position and what this means for the important work we have been doing with our AusDoCC family and importantly how this will continue.

Over the past 7 years myself and members of my laboratory have worked closely with you to build an Australian database of people with ACC and their families. This database has been the start of a major research program to understand your truly remarkable brains and how your brain has adapted and changed in light of ACC. We are also working hard to understand the causes of ACC, including identifying the genes involved, how ACC effects people’s cognitive functions, and how people with ACC manage challenges throughout their entire lives. I feel very privileged to work with you and your wonderful families and I wanted to reassure you that taking this position will actually allow me to continue to work with you and to grow our research on ACC.


First, here is a little about my new position:

Washington University School of Medicine is ranked equal 6th of all medical schools in the USA, has had 18 Nobel Prize winners, and is one of the world’s premier institutions for neuroscience research. Washington University is currently building an 11-story, 600,000- square-foot neuroscience research building which will bring together more than 100 research teams across different departments, and be one of the largest neuroscience research buildings in the USA ( break-ground-on-major-neuroscience-research-hub/).

Here is a link about the position:

In this role, I will not only lead the Department of Neuroscience, but I am expected to run a world-class research program within my own laboratory. My plan is to keep doing the research we have always been doing, and this will provide an opportunity to expand our efforts! Washington University in St Louis is associated with the Barnes-Jewish Hospital ( and the St Louis Children’s Hospital

In my new role, I will have the opportunity to collaborate with many more neurologists and paediatric neurologists to help expand our research and find treatments for those affected.

How will this involve AusDoCC?

Our research program currently contributes to the International Consortium for the Corpus Callosum and Cerebral Connectivity (IRC5). Your data make a critical contribution to this larger pool of data from around the world. Indeed, our Australian MRI data on ACC individuals using our high-field 7Tesla scanner is the only research dataset of its kind in the world. I intend to keep collecting data with you including MRI’s, blood draws for genetics, neuropsychological testing and other experiments that will be done here in Australia. My laboratory will then analyse this data and our work on animals will continue in St Louis. I will still be attending your conferences and we will continue to build the AusDoCC family and ACC database together.

I hope you will see this as a tremendous opportunity to continue our research together. Thank you, as always, for allowing me and my team to know you and your families and to push the boundaries of knowledge about ACC.

I will continue advocating for people with ACC and their families and together we will lead international efforts to understand the brain.


(AusDoCC Chief Scientific Advisor and Patron)