Dr. Van Veluw is interested in the vascular contributions to dementia, and have a strong background in neuroimaging and neuropathology. Her current research focuses on one of the most common age-related cerebral small vessel diseases; cerebral amyloid angiopathy (CAA). She use both in vivo clinical MRI as well as high-resolution ex vivo (7T) MRI of human brain tissue to understand the neuropathology underlying MRI-observed microvascular lesions. Moreover, her work with a mouse model that develops Alzheimer pathology as well as CAA, to get at the underlying mechanisms of microvascular dysfunction in dementia. Specifically, multi-photon microscopy to study structure and function of small cortical vessels and the mechanisms underlying microhemorrhage formation in the living mouse brain. For this work Van Veluw received a postdoctoral fellowship.
In terms of future research directions towards becoming an independent investigator, she interested in trying to understand the neuropathological tissue changes underlying imaging abnormalities commonly observed in immunotherapy trials in Alzheimer’s disease (so-called ARIA-E & ARIA-H). . These severe imaging abnormalities pose serious challenges for the safe use of immunotherapies, and a better understanding what drives these vascular-related pathologies may help finding ways to prevent them. Although these abnormalities are relatively ‘new’ observations in the field of Alzheimer’s disease, we have dealt with them for many years in the context of CAA. Therefore I believe we can significantly contribute to this emerging ‘challenge’. My aim is to do so by providing MRI-histopathological translational approaches as well as a mouse model to understand the mechanisms that drive these complications.