Diagnosis, treatment and prevention of medically relevant prion diseases

Research Opportunity
Masters by Research, Honours
Department
Microbiology and Immunology
Location
Doherty Institute
Primary Supervisor Email Number Webpage
Associate Professor Vicki Lawson vlawson@unimelb.edu.au Personal web page

Summary Projects are available that use mouse adapted human prion strains in cell-free, in vitro and in vivo assays using a range of techniques to investigate the effect of prion strain variation on diagnosis, treatment and prevention of prion disease.

Project Details

Prion diseases are invariably fatal neurodegenerative disorders that affect both humans and animals. Prion diseases are caused by the propagation of a misfolded form of the normal cellular prion protein. Despite advances in our understanding of the nature of the transmissible agent of prion diseases there is still no treatment that has been shown to be effective in slowing or preventing progression of disease in humans. Furthermore, there is currently no pre-symptomatic diagnostic method that can identify patients with early disease who might respond to therapeutic intervention should it become available or identify individuals who are at risk of transmitting disease. A further challenge to the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of prion diseases is the existence of prion strains that reflect different conformations of the misfolded prion protein. The existence of these strains, which manifest in different disease phenotypes, can affect treatment and diagnosis of disease and effect decontamination of surgical equipment. Projects are available that use mouse adapted human prion strains in cell-free, in vitro and in vivo assays using a range of techniques to investigate the effect of prion strain variation on diagnosis, treatment and prevention of prion disease.



Faculty Research Themes

Infection and Immunology

School Research Themes

Infection & Immunity



Research Opportunities

Masters by Research, Honours
Students who are interested in joining this project will need to consider their elegibility as well as other requirements before contacting the supervisor of this research

Graduate Research application

Honours application

Key Contact

For further information about this research, please contact a supervisor.

Department

Microbiology and Immunology

Research Group / Unit / Centre

Lawson laboratory: Neurodegenerative disease caused by prions

Research Node

Doherty Institute

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