• Psychiatry
  • Research Focus


  • Dementia
  • Alzheimer's Disease
  • Clinical Trials
  • Clinical Conditions

  • Alzheimer's disease
  • Personality disorders
  • Equipment & Techniques

  • Positron Emission Tomography (PET)
  • Computational modelling
  • Back

    Dr Ben Underwood MA MBBS PhD FRCPsych CertMedEd

    University Position
    Assistant Professor
    Dr Ben Underwood is pleased to consider applications from prospective PhD students.


    I am an assistant professor in applied and translational old age psychiatry and honorary consultant old age psychiatrist in Cambridge. I am the research and development director at Cambridgeshire and Peterborough NHS Foundation Trust and clinical director of the WIndsor research unit at Fulbourn hospital. My primary research interests are in clinical trials in dementia where I have been PI and CI for more than 20 academic and commercial trials including phase 1 studies and those those arising from basic science in Cambridge. I am the lead for the NIHR CRN for dementia for the east of England and national lead for stratified medicine in dementia. I am particularly interested in novel trial design and co-production with people with lived experience to optimise trial outcomes. My other interests include using big data and modelling to improve dementia services. More recently I have started to develop an evidence base for people with dementia admitted to psychiatric inpatient care and people with complex emotional needs in later life .

    Schematic of the unfolded protein response, one target for experimental medicine approaches in dementia, and the sites of action of potential drugs.

    Key Publications

    Association between lithium use and the incidence of dementia and its subtypes: A retrospective cohort study.

    Journal: PLoS Med
    E-pub date: 1 Mar 2022
    Authors: S Chen, BR Underwood, PB Jones, JR Lewis, RN Cardinal


    Factors That Influence Meeting the Recommended Weekly Physical Activity Target Among Older People With Physical Multimorbidity: Evidence From 6 Low- and Middle-Income Countries.

    Journal: J Phys Act Health
    E-pub date: 1 Mar 2024
    Authors: L Smith, DK Yon, L Butler, K Kostev, C Brayne, Y Barnett, BR Underwood, JI Shin, M Rahmati, SAS Neufeld, A Ragnhildstveit, GF López Sánchez, A Koyanagi

    Risk Factors for Longer-Term Mortality in Discharged Patients with Dementia and SARS-CoV-2 Infection: A Matched Case-Control Study.

    Journal: J Alzheimers Dis
    E-pub date: 1 Aug 2023
    Authors: S Chen, RN Cardinal, K Auckland, EpiCov Database, S Gräf, JT O'Brien, BR Underwood

    Including older people in health and social care research: best practice recommendations based on the INCLUDE framework.

    Journal: Age Ageing
    E-pub date: 1 Jun 2023
    Authors: VA Goodwin, MSA Low, TJ Quinn, EJ Cockcroft, V Shepherd, PH Evans, EJ Henderson, F Mahmood, M Ni Lochlainn, C Needham, BR Underwood, A Arora, MD Witham

    Why care about integrated care? Part 3. Weighing sunlight: Delivering integration in practice and measuring success

    Journal: BJPsych Advances
    E-pub date: 7 Jan 2023
    Authors: DK Tracy, K Hanson, BR Underwood, SS Shergill

    The epidemiology and clinical features of personality disorders in later life; a study of secondary care data.

    Journal: Int J Geriatr Psychiatry
    E-pub date: 1 Dec 2022
    Authors: N Treagust, E Sidhom, J Lewis, C Denman, O Knutson, BR Underwood

    Trazodone and patient outcomes in dementia-Limitations of naturalistic cohort data.

    Journal: Int J Geriatr Psychiatry
    E-pub date: 31 Aug 2022
    Authors: E Sidhom, MS Padilla, J Lewis, S White, JT O'Brien, GR Mallucci, BR Underwood

    The Characteristics and Outcomes of People with Dementia in Inpatient Mental Health Care: A Review.

    Journal: Clin Gerontol
    E-pub date: 27 Jul 2022
    Authors: E Wolverson, R Dunning, G Crowther, G Russell, BR Underwood

    Targeting the Unfolded Protein Response as a Disease-Modifying Pathway in Dementia

    Journal: International Journal of Molecular Sciences
    E-pub date: 11 Feb 2022
    Authors: E Sidhom, JT O’Brien, AJ Butcher, HL Smith, GR Mallucci, BR Underwood

    Risk factors for excess deaths during lockdown among older users of secondary care mental health services without confirmed COVID-19: A retrospective cohort study.

    Journal: Int J Geriatr Psychiatry
    E-pub date: 1 Dec 2021
    Authors: S Chen, PB Jones, BR Underwood, E Fernandez-Egea, P Qin, JR Lewis, RN Cardinal

    Inpatient psychiatric care for patients with dementia at four sites in the United Kingdom.

    Journal: Int J Geriatr Psychiatry
    E-pub date: 1 Dec 2021
    Authors: BG Edmans, E Wolverson, R Dunning, M Slann, G Russell, G Crowther, D Hall, R Yates, M Albert, BR Underwood

    Challenges and opportunities for conducting a vaccine trial during the COVID-19 pandemic in the United Kingdom.

    Journal: Clin Trials
    E-pub date: 1 Oct 2021
    Authors: ME Török, BR Underwood, M Toshner, C Waddington, E Sidhom, K Sharrocks, R Bousfield, C Summers, C Saunders, Z McIntyre, H Morris, J Piper, G Calderon, S Dennis, T Assari, AM de Rotrou, A Shaw, J Bradley, J O'Brien, RC Rintoul, I Smith, E Bullmore, K Chatterjee, Cambridge COVID Vaccine Trial Team

    Providing memory assessment services during COVID-19.

    Journal: Aging Ment Health
    E-pub date: 31 Aug 2021
    Authors: BR Underwood, A Thompsell, E Sidhom, A Burns

    Simulating a Community Mental Health Service During the COVID-19 Pandemic: Effects of Clinician-Clinician Encounters, Clinician-Patient-Family Encounters, Symptom-Triggered Protective Behaviour, and Household Clustering.

    Journal: Front Psychiatry
    E-pub date: 1 Aug 2021
    Authors: RN Cardinal, CE Meiser-Stedman, DM Christmas, AC Price, C Denman, BR Underwood, S Chen, S Banerjee, SR White, L Su, TJ Ford, SR Chamberlain, CM Walsh

    Isolating residents including wandering residents in care and group homes: Medical ethics and English law in the context of Covid-19.

    Journal: Int J Law Psychiatry
    E-pub date: 1 Aug 2021
    Authors: K Liddell, A Ruck Keene, A Holland, J Huppert, BR Underwood, O Clark, SIG Barclay

    Investigation of risk of dementia diagnosis and death in patients in older people’s secondary care mental health services.

    Journal: Int J Geriatr Psychiatry
    E-pub date: 1 Apr 2021
    Authors: A Kershenbaum, RN Cardinal, S Chen, BR Underwood, A Seyedsalehi, J Lewis, JS Rubinsztein

    Patients with young-onset dementia in an older people’s mental health service.

    Journal: BJPsych Bull
    E-pub date: 1 Apr 2021
    Authors: M Yeung, K MacFarland, V Mlilo, N Dean, BR Underwood

    Does insulin resistance influence neurodegeneration in non-diabetic Alzheimer’s subjects?

    Journal: Alzheimers Res Ther
    E-pub date: 17 Feb 2021
    Authors: GD Femminella, NR Livingston, S Raza, T van der Doef, E Frangou, S Love, G Busza, V Calsolaro, S Carver, C Holmes, CW Ritchie, RM Lawrence, B McFarlane, G Tadros, BH Ridha, C Bannister, Z Walker, H Archer, E Coulthard, B Underwood, A Prasanna, P Koranteng, S Karim, K Junaid, B McGuinness, AP Passmore, R Nilforooshan, A Macharouthu, A Donaldson, S Thacker, G Russell, N Malik, V Mate, L Knight, S Kshemendran, T Tan, C Holscher, J Harrison, DJ Brooks, C Ballard, P Edison

    Mild cognitive impairment: the Manchester consensus.

    Journal: Age Ageing
    E-pub date: 8 Jan 2021
    Authors: RA Dunne, D Aarsland, JT O'Brien, C Ballard, S Banerjee, NC Fox, JD Isaacs, BR Underwood, RJ Perry, D Chan, T Dening, AJ Thomas, J Schryer, A-M Jones, AR Evans, C Alessi, EJ Coulthard, J Pickett, P Elton, RW Jones, S Mitchell, N Hooper, C Kalafatis, JGC Rasmussen, H Martin, JM Schott, A Burns

    The early impact of COVID-19 on mental health and community physical health services and their patients’ mortality in Cambridgeshire and Peterborough, UK.

    Journal: J Psychiatr Res
    E-pub date: 1 Dec 2020
    Authors: S Chen, PB Jones, BR Underwood, A Moore, ET Bullmore, S Banerjee, EF Osimo, JB Deakin, CF Hatfield, FJ Thompson, JD Artingstall, MP Slann, JR Lewis, RN Cardinal

    Efficacy of a dementia intensive support (DIS) service at preventing admissions to medical and psychiatric wards: qualitative and quantitative evaluation.

    Journal: BJPsych Bull
    E-pub date: 1 Dec 2020
    Authors: JS Rubinsztein, C Hatfield, L High, R Krishnan, NA Arnaoutoglou, P Goulia, R Dudas, S Ruhi, K Wildschut, L Chouliaras, BR Underwood

    Simulating a community mental health service during the COVID-19 pandemic: effects of clinician–clinician encounters, clinician–patient–family encounters, symptom-triggered protective behaviour, and household clustering

    E-pub date: 1 Aug 2020
    Authors: R Cardinal, C Meiser-Stedman, D Christmas, A Price, C Denman, B Underwood, S Chen, S Banerjee, S White, L Su, T Ford, S Chamberlain, C Walsh

    The application of stratified medicine to dementia care

    Journal: BJPsych Advances
    E-pub date: 1 Jul 2020
    Authors: E Sidhom, J O'Brien, BR Underwood

    Dementia with Lewy bodies – from scientific knowledge to clinical insights.

    Journal: Nat Rev Neurol
    E-pub date: 1 Feb 2019
    Authors: NA Arnaoutoglou, JT O'Brien, BR Underwood

    An open-label study to assess the feasibility and tolerability of rilmenidine for the treatment of Huntington’s disease.

    Journal: J Neurol
    E-pub date: 1 Dec 2017
    Authors: BR Underwood, ZW Green-Thompson, PJ Pugh, SE Lazic, SL Mason, J Griffin, PS Jones, JB Rowe, DC Rubinsztein, RA Barker

    Huntington’s Disease: Mechanisms of Pathogenesis and Therapeutic Strategies.

    Journal: Cold Spring Harb Perspect Med
    E-pub date: 5 Jul 2017
    Authors: M Jimenez-Sanchez, F Licitra, BR Underwood, DC Rubinsztein

    First-generation antipsychotics: not gone but forgotten.

    Journal: BJPsych Bull
    E-pub date: 1 Apr 2016
    Authors: CRM Dibben, GM Khandaker, BR Underwood, C O'Loughlin, C Keep, L Mann, PB Jones

    Consensus paper: pathological mechanisms underlying neurodegeneration in spinocerebellar ataxias.

    Journal: Cerebellum
    E-pub date: 1 Apr 2014
    Authors: A Matilla-Dueñas, T Ashizawa, A Brice, S Magri, KN McFarland, M Pandolfo, SM Pulst, O Riess, DC Rubinsztein, J Schmidt, T Schmidt, DR Scoles, G Stevanin, F Taroni, BR Underwood, I Sánchez

    Complex inhibitory effects of nitric oxide on autophagy.

    Journal: Mol Cell
    E-pub date: 8 Jul 2011
    Authors: S Sarkar, VI Korolchuk, M Renna, S Imarisio, A Fleming, A Williams, M Garcia-Arencibia, C Rose, S Luo, BR Underwood, G Kroemer, CJ O'Kane, DC Rubinsztein

    Regulation of mammalian autophagy in physiology and pathophysiology.

    Journal: Physiol Rev
    E-pub date: 1 Oct 2010
    Authors: B Ravikumar, S Sarkar, JE Davies, M Futter, M Garcia-Arencibia, ZW Green-Thompson, M Jimenez-Sanchez, VI Korolchuk, M Lichtenberg, S Luo, DCO Massey, FM Menzies, K Moreau, U Narayanan, M Renna, FH Siddiqi, BR Underwood, AR Winslow, DC Rubinsztein

    Antioxidants can inhibit basal autophagy and enhance neurodegeneration in models of polyglutamine disease.

    Journal: Hum Mol Genet
    E-pub date: 1 Sep 2010
    Authors: BR Underwood, S Imarisio, A Fleming, C Rose, G Krishna, P Heard, M Quick, VI Korolchuk, M Renna, S Sarkar, M García-Arencibia, CJ O'Kane, MP Murphy, DC Rubinsztein

    Mammalian macroautophagy at a glance.

    Journal: J Cell Sci
    E-pub date: 1 Jun 2009
    Authors: B Ravikumar, M Futter, L Jahreiss, VI Korolchuk, M Lichtenberg, S Luo, DCO Massey, FM Menzies, U Narayanan, M Renna, M Jimenez-Sanchez, S Sarkar, B Underwood, A Winslow, DC Rubinsztein

    Huntington’s disease: from pathology and genetics to potential therapies.

    Journal: Biochemical Journal
    E-pub date: 1 Jun 2008
    Authors: S Imarisio, J Carmichael, V Korolchuk, C-W Chen, S Saiki, C Rose, G Krishna, JE Davies, E Ttofi, BR Underwood, DC Rubinsztein

    Vardenafil improves comorbid erectile dysfunction and mild depression.

    Journal: Evid Based Ment Health
    E-pub date: 31 Aug 2006
    Authors: BR Underwood

    Impaired cognition and decision-making in bipolar depression but no ‘affective bias’ evident.

    Journal: Psychol Med
    E-pub date: 1 May 2006
    Authors: JS Rubinsztein, A Michael, BR Underwood, M Tempest, BJ Sahakian

    Huntington disease patients and transgenic mice have similar pro-catabolic serum metabolite profiles.

    Journal: Brain
    E-pub date: 1 Apr 2006
    Authors: BR Underwood, D Broadhurst, WB Dunn, DI Ellis, AW Michell, C Vacher, DE Mosedale, DB Kell, RA Barker, DJ Grainger, DC Rubinsztein

    Rapamycin alleviates toxicity of different aggregate-prone proteins.

    Journal: Hum Mol Genet
    E-pub date: 1 Feb 2006
    Authors: Z Berger, B Ravikumar, FM Menzies, LG Oroz, BR Underwood, MN Pangalos, I Schmitt, U Wullner, BO Evert, CJ O'Kane, DC Rubinsztein