From the molecular study of receptor-ligand interactions to novel biomarkers of disease and non-invasive brain imaging - opportunities in basic and clinically oriented research

Summary

Methodologically broad but thematically focused on the role of receptors in glial (non-neuronal) cells in brain disease, the available basic science projects are concerned with the characterisation of receptor-ligand interactions while clinically oriented research centers around in vivo biodistribution studies and imaging of brain pathology in neurological and psychiatry diseases. Projects have access to some of Australia’s most advanced research infrastructure.

Supervisor(s)

Professor Richard Banati

Research Location

Health Sciences Brain and Mind Research Institute National Imaging

Program Type

Masters/PHD

Synopsis

In association with Australian Nuclear Sciences and Technology Organisation (ANSTO), the Bragg Institute (http://neo.ansto.gov.au/bragg) and the Australian Synchrotron (http://www.synchrotron.vic.gov.au/) unique opportunities exist to undertake interdisciplinary life science research. There are ongoing opportunities for honours and PhD projects related to the development of new imaging probes targeting non-neuronal (glial) cells in the brain and the study of receptor-ligand interactions at molecular level. Projects range from investigation in experimental animal models using in vivo imaging to accelerator mass-spectrometric analysis of drug distribution in biological tissue or the study of proteins by x-ray and neutron reflectometry. Clinical imaging research projects at the Brain and Mind Research Institute are concerned with the development of novel biomarkers (drugs and imaging probes) that measure disease progression and improve our understanding of the variability in the outcome of neurological and psychiatric disease. The research is conducted in broad interdisciplinary teams and knowledge or experience in one or more of the following fields is highly desirable: cellular and molecular biology, chemistry, medical imaging and data modelling.

Additional Information

Techniques:

Life cell imaging, Positron emission tomography (PET), Single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT), impedance spectrometry, quartz crystal microbalance measures, and protein structure analysis, x-ray scatter (SAXS) and neutron scatter (SANS), accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS)

Eligibility criteria:

Applicants must have a 1st class honours degree or equivalent in biology, chemistry, medicine, physics, engineering or related discipline and be eligible for an Australian (http://www.usyd.edu.au/fstudent/postgrad/research/costs/scholarships.shtml) or International postgraduate scholarship (http://www.usyd.edu.au/fstudent/international/postgrad/costs/scholarships.shtml).

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Keywords

glial cells; neuroimmunology; mental health; non-invasive imaging; molecular imaging; positron emission tomography (PET); single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT); life cell imaging; impedance spectrometry; quartz crystal microbalance; protein;

Opportunity ID

The opportunity ID for this research opportunity is: 139