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Melanie Kolbel

BSc, MSc, PhD Student

Understanding sleep behaviour and habits in sickle cell anaemia


Melanie completed her HNC Diploma in Health and Social Care with a distinction from the London College UCK and graduated with a first-class honours in Cognitive Neuroscience (BSc) from the University of Westminster, London. She successfully graduated in Paediatric Neuropsychology (MSc) from the University of London and is a member of the British Psychology Society.

She is currently completing a PhD under the supervision of Professor Fenella Kirkham, Professor Christopher Clark and Dr Dagmara Dimitrou. Her current research focus is on understanding sleep behaviour and habits in sickle cell anaemia. Her methods include polysomnography to measure obstruction of airflow during sleep; an Actiwatch to measure sleep duration and fragmentation; collecting cortisol saliva samples during the day and assessing cognitive abilities and neuroimaging to understand structural and functional changes. She hopes to design interventions and treatment opportunities in the future.

She is the recipient of the BRC Doctoral Training Support Fund, the European Sleep Research Society Training Grant and won the UCL Grand Challenges to develop a novel spatial memory test for children. Melanie won the SLC Research Student Award at the International Neuropsychological Society Meeting in Cape Town (2017).

Melanie has given presentations at regional and national meetings. She authored and co-authored peer-reviewed articles and is active in teaching. Melanie has also worked with paediatric populations focused on education and health psychology.

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