Neuropathology Laboratory

Lab head: Prof. Jillian Kril
Location: Charles Perkins Centre, level 6 West, University of Sydney Camperdown

Time to target neuroinflammation in frontotemporal dementia (FTD)

Primary supervisor: Fiona Bright

Fontotemporal dementia (FTD) refers to a group of progressive neurodegenerative disorders with different pathological signatures, genetic variability and complex disease mechanisms. FTD has a slow and subtle early onset affecting ~15 per 100,000 people between the ages of 45-64 years. Despite recent advances in understanding thepathogenesis of FTD, there remain no effective treatments or fluid biomarkers.

However, mounting evidence suggests that neuroinflammation is a major component of FTD pathology, including the differential expression of inflammatory related peripheral proteins and extensive overlap between FTD and autoimmune diseases. In addition, several genes that are mutated in FTD have also been implicated in neuroinflammation.

The aim of this study is to explore the role and extent of neuroinflammation in FTD with specific focus on microglial-driven neuroinflammation, given that microglia are the major immune component of the central nervous system (CNS)  and are key to linking the nervous and immune systems. The study will examine the distribution and extent of microglial cell activation (neuroinflammatory response) within key regions of human post mortem FTD brain tissue collected from a regional brain donor program.

The investigation of neuroinflammation and immune mediated mechanisms in FTD is a promising research trajectory in the search for future development of biomarkers and disease modifying treatments.

Techniques: Immunohistochemistry, histology, microscopy and quantitation of neuropathological features.



Dr Fiona Bright               

Prof Jillian Kril

Discipline: Pathology
Co-supervisors: Jillian Kril
Keywords: Dementia, Neuropathology, Immune response