Associate Professor Mathew Summers

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Associate Professor Mathew Summers


Research areas

  • neuropsychology
  • dementia
  • mild cognitive impairment
  • My-AHA (My Active and Healthy Ageing)


Associate Professor Mathew Summers, a member of the Sunshine Coast Mind and Neuroscience – Thompson Institute, is an AHPRA registered and endorsed Clinical Neuropsychologist and member of the APS College of Clinical Neuropsychologists.

Mathew is conducting research into neuropsychological markers of risk for developing Alzheimer’s dementia in adults with mild cognitive impairment as well as the potential for late life education to prevent the onset of dementia or reduce the incidence of age-related cognitive decline.

He is also engaged on the NHMRC funded Tasmanian Healthy Brain Project, a world-first longitudinal study of the potential benefit of University education in older adults to reduce the incident risk of dementia and mild cognitive impairment.

The Tasmanian Health Brain Project is being conducted in conjunction with colleagues from the Wicking Dementia Research and Education Centre at the University of Tasmania.

Follow Mathew at these other sites:

Professional memberships

  • Registered Psychologist, Clinical Neuropsychology endorsed (Psychology Board of Australia)
  • Member of the Australian Psychological Society
  • Member of the APS College of Clinical Neuropsychologists
  • Member of the International Neuropsychological Society
  • Member of the American Psychological Association
  • Member of the Alzheimer’s Association International Society to Advance Alzheimer Research and Treatment (ISTAART)
  • Member of the National Health and Medical Research Council of Australia (NHMRC) Translational Research Faculty


Klekociuk, S.Z., Summers, J.J., Vickers, J.C. & Summers, M.J. (2014). Reducing false positive diagnosis in MCI: The importance of comprehensive neuropsychological assessment. European Journal of Neurology, 21, 1330-1336. doi: 10.1111/ene.12488. PubMed 24943259.

Summers, M.J. & Saunders, N.L.J. (2012). Neuropsychological measures predict decline to Alzheimer’s dementia from mild cognitive impairment. Neuropsychology, 26(4), 498-508.doi: 10.1037/a0028576. doi: 10.1037/a0028576. PubMed 22612573.

Ward, D.D., Summers, M.J., Saunders, N.L. & Vickers, J.C. (2014). Modelling cognitive reserve in healthy middle and older aged adults: The Tasmanian Healthy Brain Project. International Psychogeriatrics, firstview. doi : 10.1017/S1041610214002075, PubMed 25245405

Lenehan, M.E., Klekociuk, S.Z., & Summers, M.J. (2012). Absence of a relationship between subjective memory complaint and objective memory impairment in mild cognitive impairment (MCI): Is it time to abandon subjective memory complaint as an MCI diagnostic criterion? International Psychogeriatrics, 24 (9), 1505-1514, doi: 10.1017/S1041610212000695.PubMed 22717042.

Saunders, N. & Summers, M.J. (2010). Attention and working memory deficits in mild cognitive impairment. Journal of Clinical and Experimental Neuropsychology, 32 (4), 350-357.doi: 10.1080/13803390903042379. PubMed 19787522.

Potential research projects for HDR and Honours students

  • Influence of exercise on cognitive function
  • Neuropsychological aspects of dementia and preclinical stages of dementia
  • Healthy aging – cognitive and neuropsychological aspects

Research grants

Grant/Project name  Investigators  Funding body  Year(s)  Focus
my-AHA: My active and healthy aging Summers, M.J. & Smith, S. NHMRC-European Union Project Grant (APP1115818) (A$496,081.20) 2016–2019 Early risk detection and intervention for age-related frailty
The Tasmanian Health Brain Project:  A longitudinal intervention study to reduce the risk of ageing-related cognitive decline and dementia Vickers, J.C, Summers, M.J., Valenzuela, M.J., Summers, J.J., King, A., Robinson, A., & Srikanth, V. NHMRC Project Grant (APP1108794) (A$878,790.50) 2016–2020 A longitudinal intervention study to reduce the risk of ageing-related cognitive decline and dementia
My active and healthy ageing (HORIZON2020-PHC-21-2015:  Advancing active and healthy ageing with ICT: Early risk detection and intervention) Vercelli, A., Rainero, I., Rocca, P., Isaia, G. ... Summers, M.J. & Smith, S. European Commission Research Consortium grant (A$6,890,572)  2016–2020 ICT-based intervention for frailty
Assessing cognitive impairment in cardiovascular patients: Predictive assessment of dementia related microvascular brain disease Summers, M.J., Greaves, K., & Klekociuk, S.Z. Wishlist Sunshine Coast Health Foundation (A$19,668)  2015–2017 Cognitive screening of cardiovascular patients
The Healthy Brain Project: A prospective cohort study to examine how later-life university education may affect the trajectory of ageing-related cognitive decline Vickers, J., Summers, M.J., Valenzuela, M., Summers, J.J., Ritchie, K., & Robinson, A NHMRC Project Grant (APP1003645) (A$1,031,442)   2011–2016  
A phase 1b, double-blind, randomised, placebo-controlled, parallel group study of the safety, tolerability, preliminary efficacy and pharmacodynamics of BTD-001 in young adults and adolescents with Down Syndrome Summers, M.J. & Strong, J. Research Consultancy, Novotech (Australia Pty Ltd) (A$90,120)  2013  
Evaluation of a multidimensional cognitive enhancement training program for healthy older adults Summers, J.J., Elder, S.J., Summers, M.J., & Vickers, J.C.  ARC Linkage Grant (LP0991044)  (A$327,583) 2009–2011  
The role of the ApoE gene in cognitive performance following traumatic brain injury 

Pritchett, C., Skilbeck, C., Summers, M.J., & Dickson, T.

Cradle Coast Cross Boundary Research Fund $2,460 2010  
Neuromotor and neuropsychological assessment of staff in Groote Eylandt: Phase II  Summers, J.J., Hannan, G.J. & Summers, M.J. Research Consultancy, Groote Eylandt Mining Company (GEMCO) ($68,692)  2008  
Study of Tasmanian Outcomes in Intensive Care (STOIC – Pilot Study) amd (STOIC-2) 24 month follow up Marsden, K., Summers, M.J., Turner, A., Bell, T., & Beswick, A. Royal Hobart Hospital Research Foundation Grant (06-346S/08-369) (A$13,773)  2008  

A longitudinal study of psychological and neuromotor effects of low level manganese exposure

Summers, J.J., Hannan, G.J., Summers, M.J., & McLean, S.R. ARC Linkage Grant (LP0455174) (A$185,301) 2004–2007   
Neural correlates of performance trade-offs and interference in dual-task performance Summers, J.J., Martin, F., Temprado, J.J., & Summers, M.J. ARC Discovery Grant (DP0451217) (A$200,000)  2004–2007   
Neuromotor and neuropsychological assessment of staff in Groote Eylandt Summers, J.J., Hannan, G.J., & Summers, M.J. Research Consultancy, Groote Eylandt Mining Company (GEMCO) (A$68,750) 2006  
A study of Tasmanian Outcomes in Intensive Care (STOIC) pilot Study Marsden, K., Turner, A., Summers, M.J., Bell, T., Beswick, A., & Trubody, V. Royal Hobart Hospital Research Foundation Grant (06-346S/08-369) (A$15,000) 2006  
Event-related potentials (ERP) as a diagnostic tool of attention dysfunction in closed head injury Summers, M.J. & Martin, F. MAIB Injury Prevention and Management Foundation research grant (A$130,007) 2003–2006  
Effects of resistance exercise in a gym on physiological and cognitive functioning in older adults Skilbeck, C.E., Ball, M.J., Williams, A., Martin, F., Summers, J.J., & Summers, M.J. University of Tasmania Institutional Research Grant Scheme (A$17,000) 2004  
The long-term effects of low exposures to manganese dust and fume on neuromuscular and psychological functioning: A longitudinal approach Summers, J.J, Hannan, G.J. & Summers, M.J. Research Consultancy, Tasmanian Electrometallurgical Company (TEMCO) (A$36,364) 2004  
Inattentional blindness: The effects of frontal lobe damage Summers, M.J. MAIB Injury Prevention and Management Foundation (A$9,856) 2002  
Portable ERP machine purchase Summers, M.J. & Martin, F. UTAS Faculty of Science & Engineering Major Equipment Grant (A$83,250) 2002  



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