Dr Rosie Clark
Honorary Senior Research AssociateBristol Medical School (PHS)
My current research is focused on two main streams, working alongside Cathy Williams and Iain Gilchrist. The first is the development of a paediatric clinical service for objective eye movement assessment, using an eye tracker. This involves creating a bespoke suite of flexible tests that can be used to assess many aspects of oculomotor control, which is suitable for use with a range of abilities and ages of children. Eye trackers are seldom used in a clinical setting, but could have a huge potential to aid the diagnostic pathway and monitor disease progression, as objective eye tracking can highlight more subtle abnormalities and changes than can be seen by eye. Recently, I conducted a NHS service evaulation of a paediatric eye tracking clinic in Bristol Eye Hospital to address this need.
The second stream of research involves investigating the efficacy of a novel app designed and built with developer Kieren Pitts and artist Alex Lucas as a therapeutic tool to improve oculomotor control in children. Currently there are no validated evidence-based treatments for children with impaired oculomotor control, so this is an exciting development that could potentially improve their quality of life. We have conducted acceptability piloting of this app and found a daily ‘dose’ of activity on the app across 4 to 6 weeks to be feasible for children to engage with. The next step for this project is to conduct a full feasibility trial.
My research interests lie in paediatric vision and specifically eye movement control. Often children who have additional developmental or learning needs also have impaired control of their eye movements. This can impact on almost every aspect of life including learning to read, crossing a road and interacting with friends. I am also interested in epidemiology, genetics and biomarkers of visual impairment, and have spent some time working in ALSPAC on these kinds of data. I am also interested in the interaction of oculomotor control with areas of cognition, cognitive side effects associated with treatments that interact with the brain and how we can use objective eye-movement recordings to understand more about decision-making and cognition.
Maternal prenatal vitamin B12 intake is associated with speech development and mathematical abilities in childhood
Heath and Technology
Unexpected associations between the number of FRAXE repeats in boys and evidence of diabetes in their mothers and maternal grandmothers raises intriguing hypotheses
Associations between paracetamol (acetaminophen) intake between 18 and 32 weeks gestation and neurocognitive outcomes in the child
Paediatric and Perinatal Epidemiology
The FRAXA and FRAXE allele repeat size of boys from the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children (ALSPAC)
Wellcome Open Research