About Dr Serene Paul

My research interests are in: • Promoting physical activity, exercise participation and early access to rehabilitation for people with Parkinson’s disease and neurodegenerative disease. • Accurate detection of motor deficits, e.g. through use of wearable sensors, to aid targeted delivery of physical intervention for people with Parkinson’s disease and other neurodegenerative diseases in order to minimise physical disability • Evaluation of rehabilitation provision to and health service utilisation by people with Parkinson’s disease and other neurodegenerative diseases.

My research expertise is in: • Conducting randomised controlled trials and observational cohort studies • Data linkage studies involving analysis of routinely collected administrative health data to evaluate health service utilisation at a population health level • Analysing physical activity and movement deficits using wearable sensors • Regression analyses

I have published multiple papers pertaining to assessment and rehabilitation for people with Parkinson’s disease and older adults in high-impact clinical and rehabilitation journals, including Neurology and Movement Disorders. My research is directly relevant to clinical practice, e.g. my research includes the first randomised trial of muscle power training for Parkinson’s disease and observational studies using wearable sensors to improve assessment of movement in clinical populations. The clinical fall prediction tool I developed was incorporated into the 2014 European Physiotherapy Guideline for Parkinson’s disease and is being used clinically in Australia, Europe, Singapore and the USA. My track record of leadership and influence includes being an invited guest editor for a special edition of the journal Parkinson’s Disease in 2015, a role previously undertaken by leading Parkinson’s researchers (eg, Alice Nieuwboer and Gammon Earhart). I have reviewed for grants (NHMRC project grants, Physiotherapy Research Foundation) and conferences (World Confederation of Physical Therapy 2015). I also maintain regular contribution to the research community by undertaking invited manuscript reviews for international journals (average 7 per year).

Selected publications

Paul SS, Harvey LA, Canning CG, Boufous S, Lord SR, Close JCT, Sherrington C. Fall-related hospitalisation in people with Parkinson’s disease. Eur J Neurol 2017;24(3):523-9.

Paul SS, Harvey L, Carroll T, Li Q, Boufous S, Priddis A, Tiedemann A, Clemson L, Lord SR, Muecke S, Close JCT, Lo S, Sherrington C. Trends in fall-related ambulance use and hospitalisation among older adults in NSW from 2006 to 2013: a retrospective, population-based study. Publ Health Res Pract 2016 (accepted for publication 20 December 2016).  

Sherrington C, Michaleff ZA, Fairhall N, Paul SS, Tiedemann A, Whitney J, Cumming RG, Herbert RD, Close JCT, Lord SR. Exercise to prevent falls in older adults: an updated systematic review and meta-analysis. Br J Sports Med 2016 (doi: 10.1136/bjsports-2016-096547).  

Paul SS, Ellis TD, Dibble LE, Earhart GM, Ford MP, Foreman KB, Cavanaugh JT. Obtaining reliable estimates of ambulatory physical activity in people with Parkinson’s disease. J Parkinsons Dis 2016;6(2):301-5.
Paul SS, Tiedemann A, Hassett LM, Ramsay E, Kirkham C, Chagpar S, Sherrington C. Validity of the Fitbit activity tracker for measuring steps in community-dwelling older adults. BMJ Open Sport Exerc Med 2015;0:e000013.  

Paul SS, Thackeray A, Duncan RP, Cavanaugh JT, Ellis TD, Earhart GM, Ford MP, Foreman KB, Dibble LE. Two-year trajectory of fall risk in people with Parkinson disease: a latent class analysis. Arch Phys Med Rehabil 2016;97(3):372-9.  

Canning CG, Sherrington C, Lord SR, Close JCT, Heritier S, Heller G, Howard K, Allen NE, Latt MD, Murray S, O’Rourke S, Paul SS, Song J, Fung VSC. Exercise for falls prevention in Parkinson’s disease: a randomized controlled trial. Neurology 2015;84(3):304-12.  

Paul SS, Allen NE, Sherrington C, Heller G, Fung VSC, Close JCT, Lord SR, Canning CG. Risk factors for frequent falls in people with Parkinson’s disease. J Parkinsons Dis 2014;4(4):699-703. 

Canning CG, Paul SS, Nieuwboer N. Prevention of falls in Parkinson’s disease: a review of fall risk factors and the role of physical interventions. Neurodegener Dis Manag 2014;4(3):202-21.  

Paul SS, Canning CG, Song J, Fung VSC, Sherrington C. Leg muscle power is enhanced by training in people with Parkinson’s disease: a randomised controlled trial. Clin Rehabil 2014;28(3):275-88. 

Paul SS, Canning CG, Sherrington C, Lord SR, Close JCT, Fung VSC. Three simple clinical tests to accurately predict falls in people with Parkinson’s disease. Mov Disord 2013;28(5): 655-62.