The Center for Children's Bone Health

Lab head: David Little, Aaron Schindeler, Craig Munns
Location: The Kids Research Institute at The Children's Hospital at Westmead

The Center for Children's Bone Health (CCBH) aims to advance orthopaedic care and bone health through an improved understanding of bone diseases, bone healing and pharmaceutical therapies. Its research approach is highly translational, bridging the gap from bench to bedside.

The CCBH encompasses an array of basic scientists, engineers, technicians and research assistants, postgraduate scholars, medical doctors and other clinical staff across the Sydney Children's Hospitals Network (SCHN).  Members of the CCBH have had significant academic and grant success and has a robust publication records, particularly in high impact bone, orthopaedic, and tissue engineering journals.

Research approach equipment: Advanced genetically modified mouse models Culture of cell lines and primary bone & muscle cells from mice & humans Gene expression & protein analysis by qPCR and western blotting Tissue histology & histomorphometry XR, DEXA, QCT and microCT scanning Virus induced gene excision Surgical models in rodents(fracture models, BMP-induced bone, spine fusion) & drug administration Manufacturing of polymer scaffolds and other tissue engineering constructs

New therapeutics for preventing and treating fracture infection

Primary supervisor: Aaron Schindeler

Fracture infection is a major challenge in orthopaedic medicine. Once a bone infection is present, treatment can be challenging and many pathogens are acquiring resistance to commonly used antibiotics. In particular, drug-resistant strains of staphlococcus aureus are a major challenge and can lead to delayed or non-union, sepsis, amputation, and in some cases death.

We have identified a new candidate compound with dual properties as an antibiotic and as a bone repair agent. We are looking for a student to examine the functionality of this agent in joint replacement. Data from previous research projects has shown that it can prevent infection as an implant coating, however we hypothesize that delivery via different biomaterials may improve its antibiotic and bone formation effects in vivo. 

This project would suit a student with a biomedical science or biomedical engineering background, particularly with an interest in preclinical translation and biomaterials.

Interested students should contact Dr Aaron Schindeler on 0404032645 or at for further information.

Discipline: Applied Medical Sciences, Westmead
Co-supervisors: David Little
Keywords: Bone health, Orthopaedics, Paediatrics